Blue Planet News

April 24, 2016


Molokai to Oahu Race (M2O) 2016 race board rental and buy back programs

Are you looking to rent a board for the Molokai to Oahu race on July 31st 2016?  We have high performance downwind boards available for rent for the Molokai race.

The rental fee for use of one of our high performance carbon boards is a $400 flat fee which includes 7 days of board use.  We have 14' Blue Planet Bump Rider boards, 14' SIC bullets (V1 and V2 models) and 17 Bullets available for rent.

We also offer the following:  purchase a new race board from us, after the race you can either keep the board, sell it yourself, or we will offer to buy it back for 30% off the new price (if there is no major damage to the board).   This offer is only for new boards purchased from our shop less than one month before the race and sold back within a week after the race.

If you are interested, please order the board at least one month before the race.

Please call our shop for availability and pricing, or check our available inventory spreadsheet for available boards (click tabs at the bottom to see all the inventory)

Molokai race board rental program

m2o race rental boards


buy new SUP

buy new SIC paddleboard

buy new SIC bullet SUP

Connor Baxter on paddle length and SUP stroke technique video

I recently had the chance to sit down and interview Connor Baxter at the 2017 Starboard distributor meeting on Maui. I can't post the video on his updated version of the Bolt paddle yet though I can say it felt great.  This video features Connor talking about the length of his paddles for SUP racing and Stand Up Surfing (his paddles are dramatically shorter than they used to be) and has some great stroke technique tips.

Connor explains how he uses his legs and core muscles more and keeping his upper body relaxed.  He also talks about his choke down stroke, "porpoising" his board when sprinting and some other great insights.  You can't argue with his results, please give the thumbs up on youtube if you enjoy this video and subscribe to the blueplanetsurf youtube channel!



Connor Baxter demonstrates his stroke technique in this video and talks about how it changes over the years, including a dramatically shorter paddle length, and how he watches and tries to mimic the strokes of other top paddlers like Danny Ching and Travis Grant at races.   He uses the analogy of pulling and propelling yourself past a fixed steel pole on a skateboard by pulling the hips back and then throwing them forward, a good analogy. 

This is a link to a facebook video of Georges Cornsteadt that shows him using the forward thrust coming from the hips in a paddling drill:


Evan Leong and I discuss stroke technique and this video in this episode of Board Meeting:


Connor Baxter stroke technique

How to Stand Up Paddle Board with Verena Mei

Learn how to SUP with Verena Mei and Blue Planet Surf.  

Verena is a professional race car driver who grew up in Hawaii and recently moved back to Oahu.  She got into Stand Up Paddleboarding and has been a great customer and supporter of Blue Planet Surf Shop.  In this series she is getting tips on safety, technique, board handling and more from Blue Planet Surf founder Robert Stehlik.  This series of 11 videos covers all the basics of Stand Up Paddling and also goes into some more advanced stroke technique.  It's basically like getting a private SUP lesson for free, compliments of

Here is the first video in the series:

How to Stand Up Paddle Board with Verena Mei, Part 1: Safety


SUP is a great, fun, health and safe sport if practiced with some common sense.

Basic points covered in this video are:

1) Be aware of conditions.  When you are starting out, light wind and protected water are the best conditions for learning quickly.  Light winds are fine but the chop created by the wind will make balancing more difficult and you should always make sure to paddle into the wind first to make sure you can get back to where you started.  Don't go out if the wind is strong, offshore winds (blowing you away from the shore) can be very dangerous as they can carry you out to sea and usually get stronger the farther out you get.

2) Always wear a leash.  In Hawaii we are not required to wear a personal floatation device when Stand Up Paddle boarding but you should always wear a good leash and make sure it is attached securely, that way your boards is always attached to you and acts as your floatation device.

3) Know how to swim.  This should be self explanatory, but before you learn how to SUP, you should learn how to swim first.  The rule of thumb is: don't go out further from shore than you could swim back on your own power.

This is the second video in this series: board handling and gear

In this video we cover how to protect your board from heat and fin damage, how to safely lift up and carry your board and some things to consider when choosing your first board.  At Blue Planet we always recommend trying several SUP's before choosing one as nothing beats trying a board to get an idea of whether it will work for you or not.  Balancing should be challenging at first, as your balance quickly improves.  We often talk to customers that bought their first board without trying it first and then finding out that it is just not a good board for their needs.  Let's face it, it does not matter how cheap a board is or how great the deal seems to be, if you don't enjoy using the board and it sits around collecting dust, it's a waste of money.  We want you to get out on the water and enjoy your board, so we want to make sure you get one that is right for you.  

Click here for more information on how to choose the right board and watch the video.

Click here for more information on our free SUP Clinics for Blue Planet customers.


A common mistake made by beginners is holding the paddle backwards, this video shows how to angle the paddle correctly and why:


Being able to steer the board is very important, this video covers steering (or sweeping) strokes vs. forward strokes and how to turn the board:


This video goes over how to stand up on the board without losing your balance:


Falling in is part of learning, this covers how to fall in safely and how to get back on the board easily:


Most beginners tend to "grab" the board with their toes, this covers how to keep your feet from going numb or cramping and how to move your feet on the board:


This video goes into slightly more advanced stroke technique: feathering (twisting the blade when exiting the water) makes the stroke much smoother and more efficient and the sooner you learn it, the easier it is to learn it.  When we coach more advanced paddlers that have been paddling for a long time without feathering, it is very difficult for them to adjust their stroke, so try to learn this right from the start:


The five phases of the Stand Up Paddle stroke: Catch, Power, Exit, Recovery:


Doing the twist:  using less of your arms and more of your torso and core muscles to power your stroke:


Making your stoke more efficient by reaching forward and keeping the power phase in front of your feet, where it is most efficient:


We hope you enjoyed this series of videos, please subscribe to our youtube channel and watch our latest videos, we post new videos on a weekly basis.  

Aloha, Robert Stehlik and Verena Mei

How to SUP with Verena Mei


Blue Planet Surf Shop expansion celebration

Thank you to everyone who was able to attend the event and for making it a great celebration!
Here is a photo album from the event:

Feel free to tag yourself and friends and add your photos. Aloha! Special thanks to event sponsors/ supporters: Kona...

Posted by Robert Stehlik on Sunday, March 20, 2016

AccesSurf Fundraiser and Shop Expansion Celebration Invitiation:

This is an open invitation to all Blue Planet customers to join us for a celebration and fundraiser for Access Surf from 6 pm-8:30 pm on March 19th.  A $10 donation to Access Surf will get you two drinks, pupus and a raffle ticket, the grand prize is a new Blue Planet SUP board.  Surfer Joe Teipel will be the MC, we will have a blessing of the new parking lot, warehouse, and our re-modeled and expanded retail space.  We will present a new mural by artist Hilton Alves who will sign his artwork at the event.   Our shop staff will be on hand to show you the latest Blue Planet gear and we will have some great offers for attendees all day long.  

Parking: The event will be held in the parking lot, so our parking lot will be closed after 4 pm,  please find parking elsewhere and walk to the event.  If you are not able to free parking close by, paid parking is available the the Blaisdell Center, a short walk away.  

We hope you can attend, please RSVP to

Blue Planet Surf SUP HQ celebration invitation


This is a sketch by Hilton Alves with the mural he will be painting on the back walls of our shop this coming Wednesday- Friday March 9-11, 2016.

mural sketch for blue planet surf by Hilton Alves


All proceeds of the event will go to:

AccesSurf is a nonprofit creating community based programs for anyone with a disability to enjoy the water!


Included with your donation is the chance to win this Blue Planet 10'2" x 32" Easy Model with adjustable paddle and many other door prizes.

Win this 10'2 Easy model yellow 2015


This event will be a lot of fun, we hope to see you there!


Robert Stehlik and the Blue Planet crew

PS: Please remember to RSVP to so we know how many guests to expect.



Here is a video of the back walls of the shop getting prepped for the mural.  Hilton Alves is planning to start painting the mural on this coming Wednesday, March 9th, we will post videos of the process, stay posted!



The mural is finished, Hilton will put some finishing touches and sign it at the event.  He also donated an original painting (valued at $2000) as a door prize for our fundraiser event, thank you Hilton!

Blue Planet parking lot mural by Hilton Alves, SUP HQ

Hilton Alves donating a painting for Accessurf event at Blue Planet SUP HQ

Here is a time lapse video of Hilton paining the mural over 2 days:



Update 3/15: 

Darin Leong offered to play live guitar and Ukulele music at the event from 6-7 pm


Live Auction!

Auctioneer Joe Teipel will auction off some items with part of the proceeds benefiting AccesSurf.  This is a list of the items that will be offered at the auction, more items may be added depending on participation:

1) 10'6 x 34" Blue Planet Multi Tasker Air inflatable SUP package- retail value $1049

10'6 Multi Tasker Air Blue Planet iSUP

For details:

2) 11'6 Rock Solid SUP- retail value at $699

Rock Solid SUP at Blue Planet

For details:

3) 11'4 x 35" Blue Planet Soft Top SUP, retail value $599

For details:

4) Blue Planet Adjustable SUP paddle, valued at $59



Thank you to everyone for making our event a big success!  Here is a photo album with photos of the event:


Blue Planet Surf 2016 Product Catalog

Preview the 2016 Blue Planet Product range, including our Stand Up Paddle boards, surf boards, paddles, accessories, team riders, distributor listing, shop information, construction options, and more in our new 78 page catalog, click on the arrow to browse through the pages, click on the bottom right corner to view it full screen:

For now we only have this catalog available online.  We do have some print versions on order but due to the high cost of printing this catalog we are unfortunately not able to send it out for free.

Photo credits: Terry Reis Surf Shooter Hawaii, Ryan T Foley, Miho Tanaka, and Blue Planet Staff

Please also watch this video featuring the 2016 Blue Planet SUP board lineup:


The Blue Planet Story:

At Blue Planet we are serious, competitive and passionate about watersports and running a customer driven business. We work hard and play hard. We aim to be the market leader in stand up paddling and surfing and strive to be the best business in the marketplace. Many things have to come together to make this happen, but in the end everything is based on one goal:

We want to help you have more fun on the water! 

Our mission is to share the stoke and help as many people as possible to enjoy the water. We make user-friendly equipment that is fun to use for beginners and high performance gear for those that are ready to take it to the next level. From weekend warriors to high performance pro level riders, we have the right board for you. We aim to make the best gear and offer the most compelling value combining leading edge design, quality and features at a great price.

When I started the business as a business college student in 1993, the goal was to build a business for surfers, by surfers that would allow us to enjoy our favorite watersports when conditions are good. I often have to remind myself of this when work and other obligations take over. The ocean is our playground and we need to remember to enjoy it and make time to play and have fun. We also need to protect it. We do our best to use environmentally responsible materials, conserve energy, re-use, recycle, reduce waste and try to minimize our impact on the environment and the oceans. We encourage our customers to do the same. So what are you waiting for, get outside and have some fun!


See you on the water,

Aloha, Robert Stehlik

& the Blue Planet crew

 Blue Planet 2016 SUP catalog front cover

Blue Planet Catalog back cover collage

Kick Back & Relax with the ENO Hammock System

Blue Planet Surf Shop started stocking the ENO hammocks (Eagle's Nest Outfitters) last year and they have been a hit.  We are the premier ENO dealer in Honolulu and have a great selection of ENO hammocks and accessories in stock.  

Check out our website to see some of the items we stock (we may have more items in the shop that are not shown on the website).  You can also check out the Eagle's Nest Outfitters page for more details and available colors.

The Double Nest Hammock shown in this video comes in many different cool color combinations.  It is rated for up to 400 lbs weight and can hold two people.  It's very light and packs in it's integrated bag down to a very small package, so it's perfect to take anywhere you go. Although the fabric is very thin and light, these hammocks are surprisingly strong and resilient due to the quality materials and heavy duty triple stitched seams.  The suspension strap system makes it easy to set up by looping the two straps around two trees or attachment points and has multiple loops so you can easily adjust the height of the hammock which clips into the loops with the carabiner.

So please check out the demonstration in the video above and come to our shop to check out the selection of hammocks.  We think you will be impressed.  So when it's time to recover, kick back and relax, enjoy life a little more with an ENO hammock.  Aloha!


ENO DoubleNest Features:

Eagle's Nest Outfitters ENO hammock features


Many color combinations to choose from:

ENO Hammock colors at Blue PlanetENO DoubleNest available colors


Enjoy lounging with your friends:

Stacked ENO Hammocks

ENO suspension strapsENO hammock with a view

Enjoy the view from a ENO hammock

ENO hammock with a view in Hawaii

SUP Tips: Catching Waves and Bumps- Flatwater drills to help you get ready for open ocean stand up paddle boarding

If you are new to downwind stand up paddle boarding, and want to get ready to do some open ocean downwinders, these are some tips and drills you can practice in flat water to help you get ready for riding bumps on a SUP.   Check the bottom of this page for information on coached downwinders. 

This post is focused on downwinders and catching/ gliding on bumps, but this drill is also helpful for catching breaking waves if you want to learn to stand up paddle surf.

In this first video I'm showing how to take a few quick accelerating strokes and then pause, glide and skim/ brace the paddle to keep you stable and balanced while gliding.  If you are doing a downwinder in light winds, this is what you will end up doing:  a few quick accelerating strokes, then pause and glide while you are getting pulled along by the bump in front of you.  In light wind you usually won't have to move the feet back, you can keep the parallel stance close to the center of the board.  It's good to practice this drill in flat water to break the habit of paddling with long, powerful strokes at a steady pace.  Downwinders are about quick sprints and glides, so you have to learn to break up your pace.   The first step is to practice taking 3,4, or 5 quick strokes and then let the board glide for about the same amount of time, so you are only paddling for about half the time.  Don't worry about moving your feet at first and just get into a good rhythm of accelerating and then gliding and skimming your paddle for balance.  Try to skim it as far out to the side as possible with the paddle at a low angle to the water for side to side stability and behind you for front to back stability.  Just skim the paddle lightly over the surface, you don't want to break, just keep the paddle very close to the water or skim very lightly over the surface.  While skimming the paddle acts as a third leg which will give you more control and will allow you to feel more comfortable in rougher conditions.  If you do loose your balance you can lean on the paddle and push your center of gravity back over the center of the board.


This next video shows how to start in "first gear" by taking quick, short strokes for powerful acceleration.  You want to focus on keeping your stroke in front of your feet and using quick bursts of power to accelerate.  Practice this in flat water as well as you will not have time to focus on this when conditions get rough. 

When the wind is stronger and the bumps get steeper, you will also have to move your weight back on the board to keep the nose from piercing and to allow your board to release and accelerate by planing on top of the water surface and to reduce the amount of wetted surface.  So, once you are good at stroking quickly to accelerate and then gliding while skimming the paddle, the next step is to also practice moving your feet back as you stop paddling and glide.  As the board slows down and the tail starts to sink, you then have to move your weight back forward close to center quickly and take some more quick acceleration strokes.  The video below has some helpful tips for moving your feet around on the board without rocking the board and loosing your balance:

 If you do this for a while, you will notice that these quick sprints followed by pauses of gliding will actually be very hard work and your heart rate will go up to a higher rate than when paddling at a steady pace.  I find that my heart rate goes up significantly higher in downwinders than when flatwater paddling which is why it is so important to relax and rest while you get a free ride when gliding on and connecting bumps.  If you don't rest it is hard to catch the next bump.  There is a misconception that when the wind blows hard you hardly have to paddle anymore.  The reality is that you have to accelerate more quickly and paddle even harder to catch the faster moving bumps on the really windy days if you want to keep up with the really fast guys.  The goal is to move as close to the speed of the bumps as possible and the stronger the wind is and the longer the fetch (the distance the wind has to create bumps), the faster you have to move to catch them.

The next video covers the five most common mistakes made by first timers on downwind runs and will be helpful to watch as well if you want to improve your downwind stand up paddle technique.


 In this Board Meeting Episode #13 Evan and Robert talk in depth about the drills shown in the first video:

Thank you for watching!


Robert Stehlik

Copyright Blue Planet Surf 2016,  you are welcome to re-post or share this content but please credit Blue Planet Surf and put a link to

Resources mentioned in the videos:

For more information on our weekly SUP training group, please visit:

For information on SUP lessons and downwind coaching by Robert Stehlik, please visit:

For information on downwind coaching with Jeff Chang/ Wet Feet, please visit:

For information on coached downwinders with Jeremy Riggs on Maui:

Safety first:  Downwinders can be dangerous.  Always go with a partner or group and if you are going for the first time, go with an experienced paddler or coach.  Have a plan and set up meeting places if you loose sight of each other, with can happen quickly in open ocean conditions.  Take a cellphone in a waterproof case and/ or a EPIRB.  Always wear a leash and make sure all your equipment is in good condition.

Equipment used in the videos:

Rasta downwind board: 14' x 28" 2016 Bump Rider:

Blue downwind board: 12'6 x 28" 2016 Bump Surfer:

Paddle:  Kai Zen with 88 blade:


SUP Downwind drill Robert Stehlik

 Direct link to the Downwind Drill SUP tip video on youtube


Click for the BBB Business Review of this Surfboards in Honolulu HI