O'Neill began as a small surf shop in 1952 - right at the golden beginning before you could really say that there was such a thing as a surf culture. It was just something that people did. But it was something that enough people did that you could open up a surf shop and make a living, which is what Jack O'Neill did just across "The Great Highway" in San Francisco, only a sand dune away from his favorite surf spot. The "Surf Shop" quickly grew in popularity thanks to Jack O'Neill's handmade neoprene vests - the first of their kind. Over the next few years O'Neill's wetsuit designs would go from popular to essential as they made it possible to surf all year round under what had been prohibitively cold conditions. Northern California was a surf destination for only part of the year before O'Neill vests and wetsuits. It wasn't long before people were surfing New Hampshire and Rhode Island in January, all thanks to O'Neill's innovative wetsuits.
O'Neill has never stopped making design improvements. Breaking new ground and setting the curve seemed to come naturally to Jack O'Neill. For example, O'Neill's vests allowed the surfers to enjoy longer sessions in cold water and surf places that had been too cold for surfing. O'Neill products can be found from Southern California all the way out to Antartica, and with good reason. O'Neill has built their reputation on quality products that can do things others can't. O'Neill knows that if you can improve upon something then you should. Boardshort purists want their boardshorts the way they were made when they were first made. This typically means stiff fabric, rigid waistbands with no elastic, unlined, a tie front, and a single cargo pocket. O'Neill makes some of their boardshorts in the traditonal way, but they're not going to be inhibited by old modes of thinking. Keeping history going is important. O'Neill keeps history alive by always looking at what's new and how it can improve what already exists. Naturally they want to honor the classic boardshort, but doing something because that was the way it was done the first time or because that's the way it's always been done ignores the possibility of something better. If people insisted on absolute tradition then we'd still be wearing wool bodysuits to swim in, and people didn't even like doing that back when there weren't any other options.
O'Neill hasn't turned its back on the possibility of improvement that comes with every new material and method of production. O'Neill has improved their boardshorts simply by adding stretch fabric to the boardshort material so that the suit doesn't resist your movements. O'Neill swimwear isn't just for surfers with a lot of years of experience either. O'Neill makes boardshorts in boys sizes as well. In fact, O'Neill makes their boys boarshorts exactly like their men's boardshorts, so if your boy wants to be just like dad he can.
Today O'Neill style in swimwear and tee shirts is popular with all men who enjoy an active outdoor life. Boardshortsfeature cargo pockets, rigid drawstring waists and a longer length. Quick-dry fabric goes from board to beach with ease. O'Neill swimwear is also available in boys' sizing from 24-30.