The future of wavepools: Wavegarden vs. Kelly’s Wave
Right now I have no doubt that wave pools are a game changer. They have evolved to a point where they can generate actual waves I’d like to pay to surf. As a consumer, I like the idea of having options and the product refinement that will result from the competition between Wavegarden and Kelly’s Wave. I believe that the impact of these pools on the society is going to be wider than just adding another exotic option to slide down a wave.
I’m not going into the details about which technology is better, or which one creates the most perfect or powerful wave. To be honest I don’t care about it, because I care about the experience and whether or not it makes people experience flow. For me, the best between both is the one able to achieve it with the largest number of people besides their skills.
Nobody has asked for my opinion and that’s why here they go my two cents on the subject.
It is clear that the main target market for these pools is us, surfers. The early adopters will be people like me, that already like surf and want to try new things. But in some unexpected ways, the society will be impacted and -in my opinion- benefited from this new technology.
If I work my ass off Monday to Friday, and have limited time to surf, frustration is likely to happen.When I do have some spare time, Mars and Jupiter need to be aligned if I am to surf on good conditions and at an empty spot. You and I have been there and hated how we love surf.
With these pools in place, I could pay for the perfect wave just for me: no local bullshit, easy parking, perfect conditions every time. Is this the era of Pay-per-surf? I am sure we will see people opt for pools over beaches for their convenience.
Fine, this is cheating. It is obvious that if these pools can generate waves for several purposes at the same time, they are making more money per wave. Since schools can run on shitty waves, they could use the leftovers to teach.
What pools might change is this: soccer moms and dads. What if I had a wavepool in town where I can take my kids to? It would be safe, I can be sitting by the pool watching how my kids are in class or a competition while sipping beer. I am sure we will have a generation of parents that will approach this sport the same way, and talking kids to surf classes is going to be a common thing.
Surf training is now limited to those living on the shore. Thus all the ripping guys live close to the beach and their number of sessions are limited by the weather. They can train when mother nature decides, and the kind of training is subject to the conditions.
Wave pools open the door to a new concept: standardization. Once we all have the same conditions every day, surf is suitable to be taught as any other sport where the place where it’s practiced does not change. Waves will be always the same and predictable, so one could practice the same movement over and over.
I expect this aspect to lead to new generations that learn much faster, new maneuvers to be invented more often, and new dedicated surf training businesses to appear.
It is no secret that flow state, that we all reach when surfing, can be used as a treatment for various problems. Until today the access to a therapy where surf is involved was limited to coastal organizations and patients, but having pools around the corner is going to change it. Both therapists and patients will have an expected 24/7 availability, and this fact alone will make surf to be considered a tool, and not just an accessory. I would like to see in the near future a breed of professionals specialized on therapies where flow through surf is at the core of their treatments.
Both therapists and patients will have an expected 24/7 availability, and this fact alone will make surf to be considered a tool, and not just an accessory. Professionals could be able to count on having a scheduled and tailored wave to create perfect therapy sessions. It is clear to me that this will give a refinement in such treatments. I would like to see in the near future a breed of professionals specialized on therapies where flow through surf is at the core of their treatments.
I would like to see in the near future a breed of professionals specialized on therapies where flow through surf is at the core of their treatments.
The winner is yet to be decided, and I believe it will depend on the one who is able to provide a solution far beyond a simple wave. If one of them is able to create a shift in society and focus today on how this technology can bring value in different ways, will win. Because it will be their victory and ours too.