Are you tired of wave pools yet? Well, take a deep breath, because here’s another one. PDS Surf’s creatively named “Wave Pool Project” is (perhaps) not-so-coincidentally located in Japan, where surfing is going to take its first Olympic steps. And (perhaps) not-so-coincidentally, Japan is where Kelly Slater has a plan to build another pool.
Wave pools are so hot right now. They’re on everyone’s lips, whether they’re bashing them or praising them. Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch is an official stop on the tour. There are unsquashable rumors that Olympic surfing will be held in a wave pool. Everyone badmouthed Wavegarden tech because it wasn’t perfect enough, then they badmouthed Kelly’s tech because it was too perfect, then they collectively creamed in their pants because that new one in Waco (shoulda called it the Waco Wave Co., you dummies) had some imperfections. Then Kelly turned around and decided to make his LESS perfect and now here we are with a couple of wave pools made by different people and a couple of waves that are all very similar. I think there’s one in Queensland that Occy’s backing, and of course there’s the ever-present threat of the Webber wave pool that, after what seems like one hundred years of hype, had never actually been a real thing. Surfers are a funny bunch. But wait… there’s one more to add to that incomplete list: Plan Do See Inc is building one in Japan, and it all seems very secretive. Either they’re secretive or they’re terrible at promotion, because now is the time for wave pool news, and I, with my finger on the arrhythmic heartbeat of surfing culture, have never heard of it! Imagine!
According to PDS Surf, they “can make the entertaining wave waker anywhere on the globe.” And users can “surf with anybody you want, anytime you want, as long as you want,” which is nice. They also claim on their website that “in a wave pool, there is no age difference or skill difference,” which can’t be right because I have surfed in a wave pool with someone both younger than me and better at surfing than me. PDS stands for Plan Do See Inc, which appears to be a Japanse hospitality-related company that builds hotels and restaurants around the world.
Unlike many other wave pool companies, PDS released a very technical video showing how their wave is generated. If you’re not science minded, this may not make sense to you, so don’t feel bad if you don’t quite understand all the vagaries of the fluid mechanics you see below:
So what’s the eventual plan for PDS Surf? Well, it seems to be similar to NLand—a place for the everyday average Joe/Jill to go if they can’t surf in the ocean. “For experienced surfers, the wave pool is where they can polish their skills anytime, and not be affected by the weather or wave condition,” they explain on their website. “For beginners, it is a place where they can discover the joy of surfing conveniently. Enjoy a night-surf after work, bond with your partner and family, organize group events, gather some friends for a surf session, or even quietly sit at our café & bar and listen to the waves.”
See more on Plan Do See Surf’s Instagram.