Beachgoers watched on with interest as hydrofoil surfers made the most of the wave conditions at Porth Beach on Thursday.

Hydrofoil surfing involves a board with a long, distinct hydrofoil underneath.

The hydrofoils' design and shape enable the rider and board to sit higher above the water, resulting in greater overall speeds due to reduced friction.

The Hydrofoil Surfboard, or Foilboard was invented In 1999 by prominent waterman Mango Carafino.

He was the first to design the Hydrofoil and brought them to the wider market that enjoys lots of commercial success today. 

There are earlier examples of the hydrofoil board in other disciplines including the first waterski hydrofoil in the 1960s, the first hydrofoil kneeboard in 1973, and the first windsurf hydrofoil in 1979.

Hydrofoils deflect water flow downwards and result in an upward force being exerted on the craft.

As the boat or craft accelerates, the hydrofoil eventually raises the hull of the boat or craft out of the water.

The hydrofoil achieves a balance with the craft's weight at a certain point, causing it to no longer fully lift the boat or craft out of the water and ride perfectly above the water.

Hydrofoil surfboards now incorporate hydrofoil technology for improved performance.

These boards maintain the board design, but they have a metal or carbon fiber hydrofoil attached to the bottom of the board.

The hydrofoil extends a few feet from the board and features a small airplane-like structure at its tip.

In the exact same way, it deflects the flow of water downward and reduces the water's impact on the board, resulting in a smoother and faster ride.

With foil boards, riders experience a unique feeling of floating or flying on top of the water that traditional surfboards just can't do.

This is done by paddling, 'pumping' the board, using waves, electric-powered jets, or being towed. 

This means foilboards have the advantage of enabling riders to stand up on the board without specifically requiring a wave to start. 

Video by Robert Taylor.