World Surf League (WSL) Hawaii's first-ever Junior Development Day took place at a beachfront Pipeline property Saturday, March 26, with a young cadre of up-and-coming pros in attendance, along with their parents and coaches. They were treated to career insights from seasoned competitors Freddy Patacchia and Pancho Sullivan; a social media skills session; tour scheduling and planning; and sports injury prevention and management skills.
Athlete ages ranged from 11 to 18 years, averaging 15 years. Of those who attended, 76 percent said they planned to attend college to support career options beyond the waves. Marketing, management, film production, fashion, sports commentary, physical therapy, and marine biology were among a range of career options they mentioned as potential options and ideas.
WSL Hawaii has committed to a total of three Junior Development Days in 2016, and the same for 2017. The organization will work to connect their junior members with skills training, mentors and career experience opportunities within the industry and around events, working to set them up for a life both on and around the world's best waves.
The social media module was one of the highlights of the day. The virtual session was delivered digitally on a Samsung HD TV by Tim Greenberg, WSL's Global Senior VP of Digital. Surfers learned trade secrets on how to gain more Instagram followers, how to use social media as a professional tool, tips to improving their accounts for maximum likes, plus insider info on the CT surfers who play the social media game right and respectfully.
Collectively, Hawaii's WSL Junior members have an astounding Instagram following of more than 300,000. Parents also learned how to help guide and support their children through the ever-evolving world of social.
Lauren Reinert, of Contemporary Sports Therapy, provided hands-on demonstrations for injury prevention and management to teach the young athletes about sports science. Reinert stressed the importance of keeping the body healthy, strong and limber, especially for those who continue to push the limits of surfing skyward.
WSL Hawaii/Tahiti Nui will continue to place emphasis on kids of their community, and support a grassroots movement to raise the level of surfing and get Polynesian surfers back on top in the professional ranks. The next Junior Development Day will be in step with the upcoming Ala Moana Pro Junior from July 11 - 17 and is open to all WSL Hawaii/Tahiti Nui 18 and Under junior members and their families. For more information or to reserve your place in the next session, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
A sincere mahalo to Banzai Bowls and Cholo's HomeStyle Mexican Restaurant for keeping Hawaii's pro juniors and families fueled-up and fed throughout the program.