As a well-established manufacturing and industrial base, it comes as no surprise that Durban has a decent track record of start-up companies that have, from humble beginnings, become successful Surfing businesses.
An example of an innovation which Durban is extremely proud of is in the success that we have had in reaching out to previously excluded communities. From a background where surfing was seen as an exclusionary sport we have through various programs developed surfers from all walks of life. In fact, it can be argued that surfing’s developmental successes have shamed other sporting codes.
Programs such as “KZN Learn2Surf” program which is based at Addington Beach have taught youngsters to surf; provided them with some sustenance; and provided a platform for them to become surfers and be ocean aware. Youngsters from this program have entered mainstream surfing and have represented the Province at SA Championship level.Another innovation which is world re-known and was televised through Coca Cola on their advertising billboards, is the “surfers, not street children” program. Surfing was introduced to a shelter for street children as a socialization program. Young surfers from that program are now making selection into the provincial surf teams and are able to manage their own tournament. Some have qualified as International judges.
Other innovations are:
The KZN Sharks Board which is the agency which cleans and repairs and maintains the shark nets which protectt our bathing beaches, have developed a device which emits electrical impulses to keep sharks away from the surfer and other water users.
World reknown ZigZag Surf Magazine and The Bomb surf magazine.
Tommy Lawson has developed a shark repellent, situated inside the surfboard, which is trialling this year.