How To Pop Up On A Surfboard, Surf Pop Up


If you aim to become a prominent wave rider, then you need to learn the basics of surfing and one important technique you need to get acquainted with is a pop-up.

Surfing pop up is simply how you stand or get to your feet on a surfboard. Pulling this stunt requires flexibility, upper body strength, strong legs, and strong core muscles.

If you are just beginning to surf, getting on your feet quickly on a wobbly board can be quite difficult. It is therefore important that you practice on land before you get onto the water. If you have a surfing balance board, even better because it will make your practice sessions more fun and real. Here is how to stand up on a surfboard properly.

1. Place Your Hands Right

When it is time to do the pop-up, place your palms on the surfboard below your armpits. Do not put your hands in front of your chest or you will push the board’s nose into the water and get wiped out. Do not grab the sides or rails of the surfboard either, as your palms could slip and get your chin hitting on the board’s deck.

2. Look Where You Are Going

The secret to a successful surfing pop up is looking forward and keeping your head straight. One of the most common mistakes that beginners make when popping up is focusing on where their legs and feet are going instead of where the board is going.

Looking down gets you losing your balance, which increases your chances of a wipeout. One trick to avoid looking down is picking a spot on the horizon or shoreline and staring at it while you pop up.

3. Curve Your Toes

You need to move your feet from the surfboard’s tail to the middle, which means you will need adequate leverage for an immense jump. By curving your toes, you get a big push, increasing your likelihood of landing in the middle of the board.

4. Push Up And Jump

With your arms below your armpits, eyes looking forward, and toes arched, you can now pop up. Push up with as much strength as you can and jump to the middle of the board. As you do this, rotate your body so you land sideways. But remember the surfboard is in motion all this time, so once you land, stay low and get ready to proceed with the surfing.

Brushing Up Your Pop Up

Performing a surf pop up successfully requires constant practice and keeping fit. Yoga for surfers can really help you remain flexible and develop a strong core. This will, in return, help you get to your feet on the board more smoothly and most importantly enable you to catch more waves while surfing.

Practice coordination and balance. This may sound funny but perfecting a pop-up is not only for the fresh meat out there. Even pros need to warm up with some rounds before hitting the water.

When Should You Pop Up?


Knowing when to pop up is one of the most crucial things you do during your surf sessions. How to stand up on a surfboard successfully will highly depend on how well you understand your surfing timing. Yes, strong core muscles and good upper body strength will get everything easier but one of the basic rules of surfing is that you should get your timing right to pull a successful pop-up stunt.

The first sign that it’s time to pop up is when your surfboard’s face dips down the wave’s face. In other words, you have matched the wave’s pace and now the gravity is pulling you down the wave. Pop up as soon as you feel the board become weightless.

If you pop up before your surfboard’s nose dips down the wave’s face, you will miss the wave. Your body’s movement when you transition from riding to standing on the board will reduce the board’s speed. Now, without the force from your riding and the pull of gravity, the surfboard will completely slow down and the wave will just roll underneath you to the beach.

How about popping up too late? Well, just like you don’t want to pop up too early, you don’t want to pop up too late either.

A scenario, commonly known as pearling is observed when the wave’s angle gets too steep for the surfer to react or the surfer is caught up in a dangerous part of the wave without enough speed. If the wave is too big and you are not able to lean your body weight back enough to match that angle, you will be lunged forward toward the wave’s trough. Together with your surfboard!

Thus, timing is everything when it comes to wave riding and it is also an important surfing safety measure. To get your timing right, always keep your eyes on the peak and see how the waves are forming.

Keeping your eye constantly on the wave will help you assess its angle so you can change positions as required. If the wave seems to move too quickly or is starting to get steeper, get ready to pop. If its peak is still developing, you may want to move your board faster past the wave to where you think it is likely to break.

Only being on the constant lookout for the ever forming and changing peaks will help you analyze the wave, adjust your speed, and do you pop up effectively. It will also enable you to survive a surfing wipeout.

Globo Surf Overview

Doing a surf pop up can be a little challenging if you are just getting started with wave riding, but with regular practicing, things get easier. The above guide demonstrates how to successfully pop up on a surfboard and could be all you need to polish up your pop up skills.

More Surf Reviews:


  1. The Secrets Of The Perfect Pop Up,
Globo Surf
My name is David Hamburg. I am an avid water sports fan who enjoys paddle boarding, surfing, scuba diving, and kite surfing. Anything with a board or chance I can get in the water I love! I am such a big fan I decided to start this website to review all my favorite products and some others. Hope you enjoy!