Laird Hamilton Bio
Name: Laird Hamilton
Birthday: March 2, 1964
Birthplace: San Fransisco, California
Nickname: The Waterman
Weight: 215 lbs
Height: 6 feet 3 inches
Big Wave Boss
Laird Hamilton is the biggest wave riding hero ever. No one has mastered the art of surfing big waves like Laird. He has traveled the World and surfed every known big wave any country has to offer… and he still lives to tell his stories.
Big Wave Boy
Laird’s dad Bill taught him how to surf when he was only 3 year’s old. By the time Laird was 7, he was jumping off 60-foot cliffs. Laird grew up in Hawaii and he lived in a village called Kaua’i with many local Hawaiians. It was a tough life constantly fighting with kids because he was different (Blond hair and tall). This toughness probably influenced him to become such a big daredevil.
Laird got his nickname “the Waterman” after the stories of the Ancient Hawaiians. Hawaiians were the first people to surf waves with their big canoes. The strongest swimmer, most courageous and leader of surfing the canoes into the biggest waves, was made leader of the tribes and called “the Waterman”. Laird inherited this name as he spent most of his years learning how to surf these same big waves of Hawaii.
Laird’s favorite accomplishment in his surfing carreer was co-inventing the way surfers can ride the biggest waves…called “Tow-in Surfing.” When waves grow to the size of mountains, they are too big to paddle into. Laird solved the problem by hooking a tow rope to a jet ski, adding footstraps to a surfboard for stability and taking turns with his friends towing each other into giant waves.
Super Stunt Man
Laird is a surfer with accomplishments in a variety of different challenges. Check out some of these amazing feats:
- Broke the European Windsurfing Speed Record when he was 22 years old
- He crossed the English Channel (34 km) on a paddle board when he was 25
- Surfed 70-foot waves in “Riding Giants” a documentary about tow-in surfing
- Married Gabrielle Reece (a New York Fashion Model)
- In 2000, Laird surfed Teahupoo and was labeled the heaviest wave ever ridden
North Shore Star
Laird starred in the feature film “North Shore”, one of the greatest surfing movies ever made. He played the character Lance Burkhart, the unbeatable World Champion of Surfing… he was the bad guy who would cheat to win all the competitions. It’s a great movie from the 1980’s and if you like surfing and an 80s music soundtrack, you’ll probably love “North Shore.”