Summer is here in full swing and if there are a few of you out there who have never tried surfing, but always wanted to give it a shot, here are a few tips for first time surfers.
Get in shape
Start working on those arms, and get your balance intact. It will be a lot easier the first time you’re out on the water if you’re physically fit. So, work on your core strengthening (so pivotal for balancing on the board), and get ready for the continuous pushups you’ll have to do whenever you try and catch a wave. Oh yeah, being a good swimmer helps, too.
Equipment is very important
A beginner surfer needs a soft top long board. The bigger the board; the better. Larger boards will give you greater stability (less side to side rocking) when attempting to stand. Also, soft boards won’t hurt as much if you fall and it happens to crash against you. They’re very versatile, paddle fast, stable, and simply the best choice. No matter how athletic you are, a smaller board is a complete waste of time for a beginner.
Wear a wet suit or rash guard long t-shirt
You’ll want to wear a wet suit to keep you warm since most surfing waters are chilly. Wet suits also act as a rash guard for your skin since you will rub up against your surfboard. Similarly, a rash guard acts as a barrier for the upper half of your body to keep your arms and torso from rubbing against the board.
Get the surf “stance” down
Before you even get in the water, practice pushing up from your board and getting into your surf stance. Bend your knees and keep your arms out, focus on an unmoving object in front of you and keep your feet firmly planted. Once you’ve got it on dry ground, see how easy it is to try that in moving water!
Surf the white water
A fact: women generally learn to surf faster than men. Why? Women will pick the larger boards and are cool surfing the white water of small waves, while men will select small boards and go for the big waves but catch nothing. Surfing the white water of small waves is a good place to start as you practice the mechanics of standing up and balancing.
Keep trying and don’t give up
Your arms may be sore, and you may be tired of falling off your board, but keep trying and keep getting up. You’ll be stoked once you finally catch that wave!
Be safe and watch your board
Be careful of your board, as it is generally the greatest danger to your safety and others around you. When you fall, the board with its knife like fins is going to go flying into the air with a 20 foot trajectory from the leash. So, protect your head and face, and watch out every time you hit the water.
Don’t overdo it your first time out
Surfing will work out your back, neck, and shoulders, and paddling will exercise new muscles, too. So, when your muscles and back feel tired, give it a rest. Notice any signs of pain and discomfort in your back, and if you feel any tingling, it’s time to call it a day.
Take a Lesson
If all else fails, find a surfing school or an experienced surfer/teacher. They’ll get you to know the basics and fine tune your surfing skills.
Most importantly, have fun! Good luck! Continue reading