Surfing is fun, no doubt about that! However, for beginners, it can also be overwhelming. It is not uncommon to commit mistakes, so it is important to be aware of how to do it right for surf beginners!
It is not as easy as grabbing your board, paddling on the water, and standing up! It may seem straightforward in theory, but in practice, it can actually be harder than what you have initially imagined.
From surfing safety to the basic rules of surfing, there are different things that you need to learn as a novice. That said, you need to learn fundamental surfing tips, including those that are listed below.
Ready? Read on and improve your surfing skills!
Start with the Right Board
Whether you are buying brand-new or renting, you need the best surfboard for beginners. It should be designed with the needs of novices in mind. Otherwise, you might end up being frustrated.
You should choose a surfboard not only based on your skills but also based on what is most appropriate for your body, including your weight. It should be large and thick, which will be easier to maneuver. Buying a shorter board is best only if you are already experienced in the sport. The condition of the waves will also have an impact on the surfboard to choose.
Be Mindful of the Surf Conditions
Since you are just starting, we highly recommend that you start surfing in small waves. You need to find a beach with beginner-friendly waves. Avoid those with a rocky bottom as this can increase the likelihood of suffering from cuts and injuries.
A beginner surf spot is a place that is not crowded. This will not only make you feel less intimidated but will also minimize the likelihood that you will be the cause of the injury of another party.
Work on your Paddling Skills
While there are many things that surf beginners need to learn, one of the most important is paddling. If you do this the wrong way, it can be exhausting. You will feel tired even before you can stand up on your board.
One of the most important is to avoid paddling with the use of both arms at the same time. Aside from fatigue, this will also slow down the board and will make your speed inconsistent. You need to find your rhythm and be able to maintain it.
When you paddle, do it while executing the crawl stroke. This will mimic the action of crawling, which means that you will be using your arms alternately. It will also make it easier for you to catch a wave when surfing.
Aside from paddling the right way, you also need to know where to paddle. You should never paddle in dangerous areas, especially if you know that it is way out of your league.
In improving your paddling skills, another important thing to do is to practice proper laying down. If you are too forward, there is a possibility of nose-diving. On the other hand, if you are too far at the back, you might be unable to watch a wave. So, you need to position your body in the center.
Find the Perfect Timing
Time is of the essence when it comes to surfing. You need to know when it is time to stand up after paddling. You cannot just end up paddling, right? With poor timing, you may be too early or too late to catch the wave.
Experts suggest that it takes trial and error to perfect your timing. You may also need to work on the speed of your paddling to catch waves.
Stand the Right Way
Now that you know how to paddle, you need to learn how to stand the right way on a surfboard. This is one of the most important as it can affect the way you ride the wave. When you do this the wrong way, you will end up falling and frustrated!
For surf beginners, the first thing to do is to determine whether you are a goofy or a regular surfer. If you are a regular surfer, this means your left foot is the one that is positioned forward. A goofy surfer, on the other hand, is someone who has the right foot forward. You need to consider which one is your stronger foot to know which should be positioned forward.
When it comes to the position of your feet, both should be centered on the width of your surfboard. If it is not in the center, you will easily lose your balance. The distance, on the other hand, should be the same as the width of your shoulders.
More so, you need to bend your knees in such a way that they will point towards each other. While you bend your lower body, the upper body should remain straight to be well-balanced. This position will also make it easier to shift weight.
Nonetheless, take note that it is not enough that you know the proper stance. While it can indeed be helpful to prevent falling out of the board, it will also be good to use surf wax or surfboard traction pads, which will help to minimize the likelihood of slipping.
Dress for the Occasion
When listing down surfing tips for beginners, one more thing that should not be ignored is the importance of what you wear.
Your chest and stomach can be prone to scratches, so make sure that you find the right surfing wetsuit or rash guards. For girls, while wearing surfing bikinis might seem comfortable, you have to observe caution to avoid any form of malfunction and to prevent rashes from the board.
Survive the Wipeout
Whether you like it or not, a wipeout is one thing that you will most probably experience when you are surfing. You need to get used to it as this is one thing that you will frequently experience. Oftentimes, you will feel trapped and helpless, especially if you are a beginner.
There are some things that you can do to prevent being wiped out. For instance, avoid paddling outside of your comfort zone. Always assess the conditions before you paddle and do not go to a place if you think that the waves are too big for you.
The presence of the mind is important. Once you realize that you will be wiped out, the first thing that you need to do is to jump out of the surfboard. Jump like what you would do in shallow water, making sure that your butt lands first. Stay calm and be in control.
Broken boards, cuts, and drowning are just some of the things that can happen during a wipeout, so you will need to know how to survive it. We also recommend that you use the best surf earplugs since water getting in your ears can be uncomfortable.
Surfing safety should be a primary concern, especially because you are a beginner. Aside from being aware of where you go, one more thing that can help is to always go with a buddy, making sure that someone can extend a helping hand when needed.
To prevent surf injuries, it is also important to stay fit and healthy. This way, you will not only have the stamina, but you will also find it easier to withstand rough surf conditions.
You should also stay safe from the heat of the sun. Even if you are wearing a wetsuit, this does not mean that you are safe. Your face is exposed. So, make sure that you have the best sunscreen for surfing.
Know-How to Behave
Learning surfing tips for beginners is not only about mastering the basic skills and techniques. You also need to know how to behave the right way, especially when you are already on the water. For instance, you should know how to give way to someone who already has the right to the wave, which will avoid a clash. You should also avoid snaking in or paddling in a wave where someone is already positioned.
It is also important that you respect the locals, wherever you are surfing. Listen to them since they know better.
Practice Makes Perfect
At the end of the day, this is perhaps the most important. Keep on practicing to be consistent and to hone your skills. Never give up too soon. The best surfers are not made overnight!
Plan surfing trips as often as possible. Watch videos and talk to people who are experienced in surfing. Invest in a balance board for surfing to replicate the actual conditions on the water.
Globo Surfer Overview
With the surfing tips that have been mentioned above, it will be easier to get started the right way. You won’t be a pro overnight, but with consistent practice and with the tricks that have been mentioned above, it won’t take long before you can finally master the fundamentals.