I am 5'8 and weigh 205 lbs. I bought the Jive a few years ago to learn how to roll and to get comfortable surfing a closed deck boat. I live near San Diego and have become mostly a surf kayaker in recent years. When I asked some experienced BCU instructors what closed deck boat they recommended for getting started surfing decked boats they all agreed the Jive was the best place to start. True to their recommendations the Jive is easy to roll and easy to surf. It's a very forgiving boat. Slow compared to my surf kayaks and without fins it does not give the ability to hold on a wave as well as a surf kayak, or get off a wave or hit the lip. It will surf big waves, but not the best for fast breaking hollow waves. It is very loose and will spin if you flatten out at high speed, it teaches you to surf rail to rail and use the paddle as fin for trimming on a fast wave. It's a venerable little boat and a lot of fun in rock gardens and confused seas, bobs like a cork. It's small enough I throw it in my van or truck for traveling and it has seen a lot of waves up and down the California coast. Have done very little whitewater, but I was very confident after having been in rough ocean conditions in my Jive. Only drawback is that the foam seat is fairly uncomfortable as is the steel foot plate. I have to get out and stretch every couple of hours.
It's too bad Necky does not make this boat any more, it seems to be a very good design for both rivers and surfing . A good boat to get started.Great beginner/advanced kayak. Very stable, easy to roll and surf. Excellent secondary stability. Will stay on line even in pushy water up to Class IV. Playful river runner for larger paddlers. Stern can be somewhat catchy when learning.
On the downside, as the outfitting is poor, Dagger or Perception thighbraces are highly recommended to replace Necky plastic strips. Needs dawg bars as the security straps are the next-to-useless nylon web variety. A recessed drain plug and top to bottom bulkheads would be nice, too.