Hurley’s Phantom boardshorts have been optimizing surfers’ performance since they were first designed in 2007. To some, surfing is a sport, to others, it’s a hobby, a distraction from day-to-day life and a way to relax. Either way, Hurley’s Phantom boardshorts and the activity share a common goal: developing performance.

The original Phantom 120 was born in 2007 when Nike applied the lightweight, stretchy fabric used in its 2004 Olympic swimming shorts to boardshorts. Since then, Nike’s influence on Hurley has led to continued innovation. Nike Flywire contributed to noticeable waistband changes in 2010 and 2011 improving the closure and enabling unprecedented fit. Around the same time, the brand began making a greater sustainability effort by repurposing plastic bottles and turning them into Phantom fabric which they continue to do today.

In 2015 the brand worked with famous surfers John John Florence and Julian Wilson to create reactive waistbands and even more functional fits. For its most recent update, Hurley developed Hyperweave which features a single woven layer and free-floating magwires that make the waistband incredibly light and reactive to movement while reducing the closure size by 50%.

This is all well and good for experienced surfers but what does this mean for everyone else? As well as being a fun activity, surfing can be a tool for optimizing human performance too. The physical benefits are pretty obvious, but the mental benefits are less so. Surfing can make the mind lighter, faster and more flexible — mirroring what Hurley has done with its Phantom boardshorts.

Mindfulness and meditation are big amongst fitness and wellness enthusiasts, and people are familiar with activities such as yoga and meditation apps such as Headspace. However, the mindfulness benefits of surfing are more allusive. The active ingredient in these all of these practices is presence; they ask individuals to focus only on something in the present moment and to disconnect from external distractions. When surfing, the mind must pay attention to the water and disconnect from everything beyond the beach.

The concepts behind the last 10 years of Hurley Phantom transcend the clothing and tell a greater surf story.

Hurley's innovative surf clubs are making surfing more accessible for everyone.

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