Windsurfing and the Ultra Trail: Two different sports, the same sensation

July 12, 2021

Windsurfing and the Ultra Trail: Two different sports, the same sensation

What do Windsurfing and Ultra Trail have in common? In principle absolutely nothing, right?

The answer is actually somewhat different. These two sports have more in common than meets the eye…. We'll tell you then.

Keep reading!


Windsurfing has its origins in the 30s, when the surfer Tom blake He had the idea of ​​placing a sail on his surfboard so he wouldn't have to wear out his arms so much when paddling for the waves. This simple but very effective invention would mean that the force of the wind was in charge of doing the hard work. We could say that this character was the creator of the Windsurfingas a sports concept.

Years later, in 1949, Newman Derby he improved on Blake's idea, developing a more sophisticated sailboard system, but did not go on to patent it. Derby is known as the "official" creator of the windsurfing board. Newman and his wife, who is listed today as the first female windsurfer in history, set up a board factory and the invention began to spread.

The growth of this sport came to California, where Jim Drake, a sailor and engineer by profession, and Hoyle Schweitzer, a surfer and skier, decided to patent the invention that Derby had developed, but with some modifications and improvements applied. The boards were made of polyethylene instead of fiberglass, thus making the board much less heavy and easier to transport.

Born to Windsurf - Hats- The Indian Face

His new product was called the windsurfer and the first runs of boards were three and a half meters long and weighed almost thirty kilos. Drake bought the corresponding part from his partner Schweitzer and expanded the market by going to Holland and popularizing windsurfing on the European continent.

Windsurfing coexisted in parallel for a few years in different ways, in different places. On the one hand, by the hand of Derby and his wife, and on the other in the custody of Drake.

The couple Derby and Drake met in the late 70s and, as expected, a great fight ensued between both sides over who really was the inventor of the windsurfing board. In parallel to their discussion, two surfers living in Hawaii were investigating the sailboard and developing an improvement so that the pieces would remain tied to the board in order to manage the use of the sail well.

Beyond copyright and the exact moment in which this sport begins, let us emphasize that, in summary, windsurfing is a sport that is born when a sailor occurs to place a sail on a surfboard and use the wind as a motor. Although now it is a very common and established practice in the sports world, windsurfing is the convergence of navigation and surfing; It is influenced by these two water sports and adds elements such as the wind, or the speed that give it its essence and its personality.

Be that as it may, windsurfing is one of those sports that makes you feel free. Away from the area where the waves break, windsurfers spend hours understanding which way the wind is blowing, which way to turn their body, and maintaining balance while holding a large, heavy sail.


The Trail was born in America at the beginning of the XNUMXth century, in San Francisco. The reason for the emergence of this sport was a bet between some runners who wanted to compete to see who could travel the fastest distance between a XNUMXth century settlement to a place known as Mount Tamalpais.

The result of this careerBetween the mountains and a sandy and changing terrain was very positive, so much so that it became an annual tradition and the course was given the name of Cross Country Run.

En SpainFor its part, the first ultra trail practices also date back to the beginning of the XNUMXth century. In the area of ​​the Basque Country, in Bilbao, competitions were organized in which the competitors ran in pairs and climbed the mountain with their hands tied.

Born to Ultratrail- Hats-The Indian Face

In 1916 the ultra trail races left the north of Spain and reached the Sierra de Guadarrama. That year, the Amigos del Campo society organized the first “official” competition that had Cercedilla-Siete Picos-Cercedilla as its itinerary.

The mountain races then began to emerge and different clubs, such as the Peñalara Club created the Iron Cup, a tournament that would have as the winner the runner who obtained the first place in two consecutive editions. Throughout the first half of the 50th century, new careers appeared in Guadarrama. With the outbreak of the Civil War they came to a standstill, and XNUMX years after the beginning of the conflict the ultra Trail competitions returned with the “Cross de las Dehesas” tournament.


It may seem at first glance that Windsurfing and Ultra Trail have little or nothing in common with each other, but that is not entirely true. Although each one is carried out on a terrain, under conditions and with different qualities and physical demands, both share an element: the feeling of freedom that is granted by practicing them.

Running an Ultra Trail race means engaging all your senses, feeling each firm footfall on the ground, being aware of the speed at which your body is when seeing how the wind hits your face, and, above all, knowing that you are alive, when you notice the force with which your heart beats.

Being, on the other hand, somewhat far from the coast, standing on a board and trusting that the wind will transport you at high speed, lift you over the water and feel that you are flying is a sensation that can be achieved if you practice windsurfing.

Cap- Born to be free - The Indian Face

Freedom, positive feelings and happiness is what these sports share to which we wanted to pay a warm tribute. We have created a collection of caps Born To Windsurf and Born To Ultra Trail, among many other sports that also share the essence of which we were talking, and we have combined in another cap, what these activities share: Born To Be Free.

We hope that knowing how and where these sports were born has encouraged you to get started in one of them, or discover that you also want to feel free.

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