Few businesses can say they got their start from a tray. To most, the inconspicuous fast food tray was nothing more than a handy device to carry your Big Mac and fries to the old rusty immovable table on the beachfront boardwalk. However, to a 14-year-old spending his or her day on the beach, those trays meant so much more. As kids, we would spend the hot South African days during the summer break, generally making nuisance's of ourselves and dreaming up all sorts of "wave riding" apparatuses from fast food trays to the trusty old flip-flop (yes believe it or not you can surf a wave with a shoe). Some I won't go into details for the sake of brevity, but let’s just say the results were anything but favorable, and it I'm sure it would be concerning for any onlooker to see the results of misguided hydro dynamic principles being put to use on a 8-foot wave.
As is the human condition, there was the need for perfection and ummm… innovation, I think. Let's just say, not all trays are born the same. Of course, it became our mission to sort the chaff from the wheat. Tray hunting was serious business back in the day and the need for the perfect ride often outweighed the need to not be chased down the beach by flailing armed restaurant staff.
Modification was rife and I guess you can call it early product development. In hindsight, what better way to spend a day than perfecting wave-riding machines! The lift and extra speed these improvised Handboards provided were the driving forces that inspired a line of boards to enhance the bodysurfing experience for everyone and the birth of Slyde Handboards and a dream.
THEN THERE WAS CALI
Fast forward through many years of travel around the globe and a Degree in Product design. I finally settled In California, It may seem random but it had been my goal all along and I guess it had never been a doubt in my mind where I wanted to start my business. California is where great things start and especially in the surf and skate industry. From San Diego to the Redwoods, Cali has an electricity and vibe you can feed off. It has an energy that inspires you on a daily basis.
SPREADING THE STOKE
It all started because, well If we enjoyed it why wouldn't everybody else? We had hunch we wouldn't be the only ones who got that uncontrollable smile after getting shacked on a handboard. The feeling that you're just a Grom having the greatest time in the ocean, and we weren't wrong. To date we have Shipped to over 30 countries. To places I didn't even know had surf and made friends and connections all over the world, from Australia to Russia and back. This is why we do this. This is the STOKE!
Slyde would not be where it is today without these boundary-pushing, open-minded, sun-burnt lovers of fun. This passionate bunch is what makes Slyde awesome. Go ahead - read a Slyde blog written by Sarah, chat with Michelle on Slyde's facebook page, email Angela a complaint (she will turn your frown, upside down), or just get stoked while riding one of your Slyde Handboards designed by Steve.