As he looked out on the water in Waikiki where three beach boys were standing and paddling on 60 pound tandem surfboards with custom made elongated outrigger paddles, his initial thought was of his two teenage boys. This would be great way to spend time with family, a way to create special memories that his boys could reflect on long after he was gone. In an instant KM Hawaii was born in the mind of Brett Huf.
Living on Oahu, it was 2006 and a time when even most Hawaiians hadn’t yet heard of the unknown sport of stand up paddling. Not a shaper by trade, this ended up being an advantage as his thinking wasn’t limited to surf-style shapes, but was open to alternative ways and more efficient ways of designing boards. “In the beginning I had no idea what I was doing, but I just kept doing it. I’m just a normal person who went for it.”
He admits there was a lot of trial and error in the early days, and said what helped him was input from others regarding board shapes. “People are always happy to give you valuable info if you show humility when asking.” Beginning with recreational boards and later adding surf and race designs, Brett realized many of the initial SUP boards pushed water instead of cutting through the water efficently. After consulting with a Navy seal he began looking at how ships moves through the water and applied this to his race boards with huge success.
Considering himself to be just the guy next door, Brett’s payoff is seeing the enthusiasm of someone who instantly becomes hooked on the the sport, helping the younger generation of SUP grow and become champions, and watching as middle-aged person gets on a board and feels like a teenager again. KM Hawaii was founded with a vision of bringing families together, inspiring and changing people’s lives forever. Although the designs and performance of the boards advance and expand, the dedication to it’s roots will always be at the heart of the company.
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