Dick Ash with his Bellybogger

I only very recently heard of Bellyboggers for the first time… guess they never quite made it to our shores.

Now that I’ve dug around on the Internet a bit, I find that Bellybogger’s have a long lineage and proud history. I also came across an Interview with their creator Dick Ash (by the guys at the Paipo Forum), which you can find here:  A Paipo Interview with Dick Ash

It is an interesting read and gives some insight into not only the principles behind how Bellyboggers work, but also, in his explaination, Dick touches on something which I have also recently become aware of; the role of elbows in riding prone…

We’ve recently had some really good and consistent swell & have been fortunate to surf pretty much 5 days straight. On one of these I took my Bodyboard out to an especially hollow and hard breaking shorebreak in the morning and then in the afternoon, I took my Mat out to a mellower wave that was breaking at a good size, but for all intents and purposes could be called a ‘longboarding wave’.

Riding these two vastly different craft back-to-back, highlighted for me just how different the sensation of speed is between a bodyboard and a mat. On the bodyboard, being propped up on one’s elbow,  it feels like you are going slower and also removes the more tactile sensation I seem to have when riding a mat which, because I lie so far forward and with my head so close to the water, gives me the heightened sensation of pure speed.

There are far too few voices around like that of Dick Ash, and I think we all owe a debt of gratitude to the folks at for preserving these valuable insights on wave-riding through their various sites and especially the The Paipo Interviews.

To find out more about Bellyboggers, visit their website: Bellybogger Home


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