Bodysurfing Pipeline

2017 Pipeline Bodysurfing Contest

On March 28, 2017 Pipeline was taken over by some of the best bodysurfers on the planet for the North Shore Lifeguard Association’s annual bodysurfing contest. The NSLA carried on the 40+ year tradition of holding a Pipeline bodysurfing contest for the original surfing tribe. Due to the late-season holding period, the surf isn’t always classic pipe conditions, but this year contestants took advantage of a beautiful day and overhead swell. Mike Stewart was able to take down another title in the talented field. Three very talented photographers provided us with a comprehensive gallery of stoke. Please contact them for prints and enjoy.

Gallery by Mike Chlala @chlala_shoots

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Gallery by Brian Yee @808maukatomakai

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Gallery by Jeff Kawelo @unko_shots

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2016 Point Panic Experience

The 2016 Point Panic Experience

Written by Event Director Kanekoa Crabbe

All photos provided by Nick Ricca @nickricca

Congratulations to B.K Holt & Kai Santos for winning the Bodysurfing & Handboarding Divisions of the 2016 Point Panic Experience!  These individuals were also the only two wave riders whom advanced to both final heats on both days of competition.  Though the surf was small, clean and somewhat inconsistent, all 50+ contestants took full advantage of the opportunity provided.  From a fired-up 11-year old beach entry grommet to the small handful of elders in their 60’s, these pure wave riders came to Point Panic from the islands of Hawaii and Kauai, Australia, North & South America and various locations on Oahu.

Much thanks and appreciation go out to ALL of this years’ participants, supporters and various sponsors of this 8th annual Point Panic wave riding event.  They include VISSLA, DaFin, Hawaiian South Shore, Soaptopia, Vertra, Custom Countertops Inc., EKM Records, Friends of Point Panic Foundation, Malama Point Panic, Menehune Water Company, Viper Surfing Fins, BSD Inc., International Bodysurfer, Manukai Handboards, Hawaiian Handplanes, Hawaiian Handfins and Wave Blades.  Mahalo nui loa for perpetuating the purest form of wave riding at the best bodysurfing wave in the world!  Hope to see you all again next year at Point Panic and don’t forget to pray for surf so maybe, just maybe, it’ll be “90 feet and glassy!”

Team Kaha Nalu Hawaii in SoCal

When we first heard that Team Kaha Nalu Hawaii was traveling to California in late August for the World Bodysurfing Championship, we immediately crossed our fingers for swell.  We hoped that for all competitors traveling to Oceanside. We wanted to show off our home break.

After a slow start to August, a bump showed up on the long range forecast and sure enough the weekend of the contest saw one of the best swells of the summer.

Here is their perspective on the contest and their time in Southern California.

Team Kaha Nalu founder Sean Enoka:
“This year, the World Bodysurfing Championships really changed my outlook about the whole thing. There is always talk about it being more of a swim contest, and that the waves aren’t good or whatever. But this year there was highly challenging but very good surf, and by the time it narrowed down to the finals it was very clear that the talent level was world class, and ALL of the competitors in the finals were killers…and are in shape.

I think that this year the name World Championships fit the bill because people showed up from all over the world. France was in. Brazil was in. Australia in. California and truly bodysurfers from all over the world. I sat and watched some of the finals on Sunday and it was super impressive how hard everyone was working to get the victory. This year was awesome and I’ll definitely be back in years to come.

We just got lucky with swell and hopefully we can get blessed the next time. On a personal trip, I was disappointed that I didn’t make it out of the first round, but the current + cold + beach start  and 15min heats did me in. But I got a chance to surf the North side of the pier and figure it out a little.

But for the contest itself, I think that all of the organizers and volunteers were awesome and it was a great contest. But I would change a couple of things like having the judges view from the beach, water starts from designated buoy markers, electronic scoring, and some other production stuff but mainly where you start and what the judges can see. I watched Kai’s heat start right as some sets were rolling in and by the time some of the guys made it out, there was like 9 mins left in the heat!  I think the judges are really overloaded and view from the wrong angle. They can’t see anything once you pass them or if you are riding away. Plus, they have to write and look away for that split second that someone could be doing something incredible. Of course bodysurfing isn’t the NFL with replay, but I think that the number of competitors and world title designation justifies a bit of an upgrade. The back to back heat starts and early starts at 6:30am are just necessary in order to process that many people and it goes like clockwork right on time.

We were so lucky to arrive just at the same time as a decent Southern hemi swell. Thursday Wedge was about 2-4 and fun sized with the side wave working and then Friday got a little bigger and the main peak was working. It was great to all be together with the Wedge Crew and also the Frenchmen. That wave is definitely one of the best in the world for bodysurfing.

Very much contestable conditions.
Oside: very much contestable conditions.

Team Kaha Nalu teamrider Kanealii Wilcox:
The contest was amazing! Things that really stood out to me include how many people it draws annually from all over the world and how efficient it runs with 370 competitors in 2 days. The bodysurf community never falls short of top notch camaraderie with everyone sharing the stoke. 

We scored fun Wedge and as long as the Wedge boys are out, its going to be a blast. Whether its trading waves or trading laughs, you can always count on them for a good time. Also, those guys know how to host guests! 
Best part of the whole trip for me was going as a group and experiencing such a great time together and to bring those memories home to reminisce about later!

Team Kaha Nalu teamrider Keali’i Punley:
The WBC was a great experience and a blessing to be a part of. Coming from Hawaii, we are not used to used to cold water. To be honest, I had a difficult time breathing and getting used to a full wetsuit. So I had to adapt and adjust. Fighting the strong current in just a 15 minute heat was hard but we managed. But we know our ability and what we can do on wave. When we got on set waves we ripped them with style. I learned a lot during my first time at the World Bodysurfing Championship. It was great uniting with bodysurfers from all over the world at one location and seeing different styles and techniques.

We had a blast during our Wedge session thanks to our fellow Wedge Crew members. Many of them watched us rip from the beach, “giving us an opportunity” to catch as many waves as possible.

2016 NSLA Pipeline Bodysurfing Contest

The North Shore Lifeguard Association ran the Pipeline Bodysurfing Contest in average surf this year. As always, the competitors were stoked to get the wave to themselves if only for a little while. This year’s champion is Kalani Brown. Kalani defeated a final full of guys who have multiple final appearances including Todd Sells, Chris Baker and Kai Santos.

“I had a awesome time getting to compete in this years Pipeline Body Surfing Contest the North Shore Lifeguard Association put on. It was a real honor getting to bodysurf with such talented watermen at an empty 3-4 foot pipeline and backdoor. I’m still shocked that I was able to do as well as I did. I know how good all of the guys in the final are and didn’t think I stood a chance. I just want to thank everyone who works hard behind the scenes to put on an event like this one. Cant wait till next years contest!”
-Kalani Brown

Final Results @northshorelifeguardassociation
Final Results

To learn more about or support the North Shore Lifeguard Association check out their website or look them up on Facebook.

Special thanks to the photographers who volunteered their images to complete this gallery. Keep up with their work through instagram at:

Jeff Kawelo @unko_shots

David Rubuliak @drubu

Brian Yee @808makua2makai

All-Time Sessions: Kalani Lattanzi

Kalani Lattanzi has made a habit of being in the right place at the right time this year. The 21-year old Brazilian bodysurfer/bodyboarder hybrid has been a part of the most exciting sessions in recent memory. He shared his most recent experience with us in our first of an on-going series called All-Time Sessions.

14.01.15 Jaws

SLM: Tell us about the Jaws session.

K: Henrique Pistilli invited me to bodysurf Jaws, so I said, ” sure why not.” I was excited because the conditions were finally perfect. We want to go bigger, but it was epic, 12-15 feet we had great times out there. The crew was Henrique, Kai Santos, Michael Donohoe, Kaliya Mayell and myself. When we first got in, we stayed at the west bowl, but after some waves we tried to stay with the surfers. The surfers were kind of surprised, but they seemed happy to see us having fun.

SLM: How was swimming with Kai and Henrique?

K: Kai and Henrique are expert watermen. Kai is a fearless mad dog. Henrique is calm on the outside, but burning inside and catching so many waves he even ended up on some of mine.  Jaws is different because there is so much water, you have to paddle super hard.

SLM: Did you need to train for Jaws specifically?

K: I didn’t need to train, I live at Itacoatiara beach, the heaviest wave in the world, in my opinion. So its already a big training surfing there. The most important thing is mentally, I use to say ” it’s only water.” Makes me feel more comfortable. When the session was over we were all so happy that everyone made it out safe. This is my second favorite bodysurfing session of all-time, just behind El Buey in 2011.

SLM: What fins did you wear?

K: I use the same I use for bodyboard, Invert Style fins, a Churchill modeled fin.

SLM: What’s your advice for the next crew of bodysurfers taking on Jaws?

K: If you wanna stay safe, stay at west bowl if you wanna go bigger try bodysurf at outside. More dangerous but maybe you catch a sick wave.

SLM: That’ll be where you are next time?

K: Yes.

Shannon ReportingSpecial thanks to @ShannonReporting for the photographic documentation. She is a photographer, surfer and television journalist.



This session was featured on the Brazilian T.V. show Homem Peixe. Check out the episode and more of Henrique Pistilli’s travels HERE.