The Hawaii State Board of Education has announced that surfing will become an official sport in state secondary schools, making Hawaii the first state in the nation to sanction the sport for high school programs. Although surfing is the oldest sport in Hawaii and has been the state's official individual sport since 2004, the board has been unable to implement it in schools due to lack of funding—until now.
High school competition is expected to begin in the spring of 2013. Contests will be judged similar to pro surf meets (and like golf), with individual boy's and girl's champions and team champions.
Hawaii native and pro surfer Carissa Moore, the youngest world champion ever at age 18, relished the news. As a student, she often had to convince her teachers of surfing's importance. Moore said, “I think it’s awesome and will open doors for kids. Surfing … has taught me a lot of valuable lessons: what hard work and perseverance can do; time management; and how to stay organized.”
Moore’s comments confirm the knowledge that sports provide important benefits to student-athletes. As she says, “[It's] a way to channel a lot of energy into something positive.”