Duke Kahanamoku

Duke Paoa Kahanamoku Kahinu Mokoe Hulikohola ( born August 24, 1890 in Honolulu, Hawaii Kingdom, † January 22, 1968 ibid ), also known as The Big Kahuna, is generally acknowledged as the father of modern surfing. Had the missionaries from Hawaii once forbidden surfing as damnable idleness, it was rediscovered in the early 20th century by Kahanamoku and made ​​popular worldwide. He was also more time Olympic gold medalist in swimming.

Duke ( Duke ) is Kahanamokus first name. His father was baptized in honor of Prince Alfred of Saxe- Coburg- Gotha, Duke of Edinburgh, who visited in 1869 at the time of his birth Hawaii. The name Duke then went over to the eldest son.

During his youth, Kahanamoku began a predecessor of today's surf boards to develop and was guided by the well-known for centuries Hawaiian Olo boards. The " papa nui " said board consisted of wood of the Koa Acacia, was 4.8 meters long and weighed 52 kg. The board had no dorsal fin, as these had not been invented.

On August 11, 1911 Kahanamoku took part in a swimming competition in the harbor of Honolulu. About 100 yards ( 91.44 meters) freestyle he reached it, a time of 55.4 seconds, with which he beat the former record by 4.6 seconds. He also undercutting the record more than 220 yards ( 201.17 meters) and equaled the record for 50 yards (45.72 meters). However, the Amateur Athletic Union had doubts about these times and realized these benefits until many years later.

Between the Olympics and after retiring from professional sports Kahanamoku traveled to many countries to swimming demonstrations, particularly to Australia and the USA. At these events, he also introduced surfing, which had hitherto been known only in Hawaii.

During his stay in Southern California, Kahanamoku performed in numerous Hollywood films. He made ​​the acquaintance of people who helped to increase the popularity of surfing yet. Duke Kahanamoku was the first that was recorded both in the Hall of Fame of the international swimming sport as well as in the Surfing Hall of Fame. According to him, the Duke Kahanamoku Invitational Surfing Championships are named. From 1932 to 1961 he was sheriff of Honolulu. Because of his contributions to it erected in honor statue at Waikīkī Beach is often decorated with Leis ( Flower Garlands ). Kahanamoku was a member of the Federation of the Freemasons, his box Hawaiian Lodge No.. 21 is a resident of Honolulu.