“The shape of a surfboard tells it’s own story, it’s unique curves from the nose to the tail... just like our bodies. We should celebrate that!” - Nique Miller

All boards come in different shapes and sizes, unique curves that make that board special. And so do our bodies. Introducing Shapes, a four part series featuring four amazing, strong and unique women, and the shapes that allow them to do what they love.

We caught up with team rider, Nique Miller, and her shaper Michael Takayama from Michael Surfboards, to discuss all things surfing and body positivity. 

Dive into our convo with Nique:

How would you describe your body type? 

Graceful Curves  

Favorite Billabong swim top silhouette & why?

My favorite Billabong top is the knotted trilet bikini top. I love that it’s sturdy for surfing but still very feminine & cute. It also gives smaller chested people like me an illusion of having more cleavage. 

Favorite Billabong swim bottom silhouette & why?

My favorite Billabong bikini bottoms are the Havana bottoms. I love that they are high-waisted but still pretty cheeky. They also are great coverage for surfing & stay on well while catching waves. 

Favorite surfboard shape:

My favorite surfboard shape is a classic “log” longboard.

Preferred fin set-up (quad, tri, single, etc)?

Single fin.

Favorite Type of wave (crumbly, big, fast, etc)?

My favorite type of wave is a shoulder to head high wave (right) that is medium pace with a bit of punch.

How do you sum up your style in 1-2 sentences:

I would describe my style as classic & graceful. I want to resemble a ballerina when I’m surfing. I love to noseride and walk back & forth on the board. Also combined with powerful turns & unique tricks.

Why is being unique & having your own style important to you (1-2 Sentences):

I think it’s important to be different and develop your own style because everyone is so distinct and beautiful and this is what makes us all unique and able to inspire others to embrace their own self. I also believe it makes the world more interesting & not so boring having everyone be the same.

Talk about your shaper and current go-to board by him: 

I have been riding Michael Takayama boards for the last 3years. I absolutely love his boards. I have ridden and tested out many longboards but his are the by far best for noseriding ones. Nose riding is when you walk to the the front of the board and gracefully balance on the edge, a very difficult longboard skill. I have been able to have some of the longest hang tens (10toes over the nose)  and cheater 5’s (one foot on the nose) on Michael’s board. I also really love that Michael hand shapes them all himself, no machine or other workers used, you are working directly with him and getting a unique custom board made for you. 

I love my board in particular because it is an all around board. It not only nose rides well but turns great and paddles very nicely. I also love the soft pastel multicolor glassing. 

My board is a 9’4 Comp Model …23.5in wide, 3in thick, squash tail, 50/50 rounded rails and medium rocker. 

Get to know Michael Takayama from Michael Surfboards:

Where are you located and how long have you been in business?

We have been in business in Oceanside, California coming up on 3 years now. We are still quite young.

How did you get started shaping boards?

I’ve been shaping boards on and off for over 30 years but more or less as a hobby. I’ve been building boards full time for 3 years now since I’ve acquired the shop.

When I was 9 yrs old my father show me how to drip the fiberglass off an old broken board, reshape what we could salvage and then glass it. They weren’t really surfboards they were called Paipo boards. Body boards I guess. My biggest influence was my Uncle Donald. I never worked for him, but I spent many decades observing, and absorbing everything I could when I would visit him. I’m very grateful.

Tell us a little about the process! How long does it take to make a board start to finish?

The process we have making our boards is different than most shops. We do every step of the build in house. I shape, glass, sand, pinline, gloss and polish every board with the help of 2 guy. As of now we are doing about 8 boards every 10 days. They are all built custom for each individual. Our boards are not one size fits all like most manufacturers. We believe in quality over quantity.

What’s the best part about seeing someone surf on your boards?

The best part about seeing somebody ride my boards is the stoke and the smiles. Seeing the joy they bring people is by far the best part.

How can we get one?!

People can inquire about the boards at my son runs the page. He takes the orders and answers all the questions.

Watch episode 03: