Beach sports and games can be light-hearted or more serious in nature, with both types bringing lots of fun to the participants. Ball games of all kinds are played on the sand but the iconic six panel inflatable beach ball (1) is particularly well suited to the environment. Beach balls have been around since at least the 1950s, they come in a variety of sizes and are made of curved panels of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) heat welded together. They are popular because they are lightweight and can be inflated when at the seaside making them easier to carry. Inflatable toys can become a danger on the sea as they are not easily controlled.
The Frisbee is another toy which is often seen being used at the seaside. It has its origins in the L’il Abner’s Flyin’ Saucer (2) designed by Fred Morrison in 1948. This toy was made of injection moulded butyl stearate by Pipco (Partners In Plastic COmpany). The design was inspired by children throwing empty pie tins to each other to catch.
The Slyde Hipster Handboard (3) or handplane is used to body surf and is a planing device which enables the user to ride waves faster, longer and with more control than a conventional body board. This board has a thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) ‘flak jacket’ which is tough and lightweight making it scratch and dent resistant. The high-density foam core delivers strength, rigidity, lightness, durability and buoyancy.
Kitesurfing is an extreme sport where wind is captured by a large power kite to propel a rider on a board. Concepts of the sport began to emerge in the 1970s, with it gaining popularity in the late 1990s. The Cabrinha Drifter (4) is made of Nano Ripstop polyester. This textile has a specific weave pattern which contains any rips or tears within a square in the fabric, preventing them from spreading across the material. The leading edge of the kite is inflated, along with three struts from front to back, giving it structure even when not in the air.