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Watch Some Board-less Wave Riders Hitting the Breakers at the 42nd Annual World Bodysurfing Championships

Watch Some Board-less Wave Riders Hitting the Breakers at the 42nd Annual World Bodysurfing Championships

Photo: Bengt Nyman (Flickr/Wikimedia Commons)

The same Pacific breakers that make our stretch of coastline here in San Diego County among the most fabled destinations in the world for traditional surfing also happen to work mighty well for riding the waves sans surfboard—aka bodysurfing.

Perhaps you’ve tried it, perhaps not, but either way the pinnacle of the sport will be on display this month within easy day-tripping reach of the Sofia Hotel here in Downtown San Diego at the World Bodysurfing Championships!

The 2018 World Bodysurfing Championships in Oceanside, CA

The 2018 World Bodysurfing Championships are the 42nd: an impressive run, it goes without saying. As many as 400 bodysurfers from all across this grand liquid planet of ours compete in the event, which this year takes place Saturday, August 18th and Sunday, August 19th at Oceanside Pier—just an hour or so by car or commuter train from San Diego. (We don’t recommend bodysurfing the whole way, in case your enthusiasm’s getting the better of you.)

The contests, which kick off bright and early at 6:30 AM both mornings, come broken up by age bracket and take the form of 15-minute heats on Saturday. Those who advance will work their way through quarter finals, semis, and finals for each age group on Sunday in the big buildup to the Men’s and Women’s Grand Championships that afternoon. The awards ceremony takes place just before 2 PM.

Last year’s World Bodysurfing Champions were Makena Magro and Dave Ford, proving their prowess in the beautiful blue rollers. We’ll see who takes the crown in 2018!

Check Out the 42nd Annual World Bodysurfing Championships Off Oceanside Pier With a Luxury Downtown San Diego Stay at the Sofia Hotel

Watching both surfers and bodysurfers at work along our local, dream-minted beaches is commonplace coastal entertainment in Greater San Diego, but it’s not everyday you get to see the best of the best going at it to prove their skills and mettle for prizes and glory. That makes the lovely jaunt up-coast from the Sofia Hotel to Oceanside for this year’s 42nd edition of the World Bodysurfing Championships well worth the effort. And meanwhile if you’re jonesing to put in some quality time of your own bodysurfing in glinting Pacific Ocean waves, our boutique Downtown San Diego hotel also makes the unbeatable H.Q. (Incidentally, we recently rounded up some of the best swimming beaches in the region, if you’re interested…)

And on a related note: If you do check out the weekend bodysurfing action up in Oceanside, we also recommend a side trip to the one-and-only California Surf Museum for an unparalleled overview of the Golden State’s contributions to wave-riding over the years!