If you are new to surfing, this is a great place to start. Below, we have included 4 beginner surfing tips that will set you up for success.
Surfing is a very ‘involved’ sport, there are lot’s and lot’s of things involved and some of them you have no control over, like the ever changing nature of the waves. The trick is doing everything right that you can control, like having the right surfboard or choosing a suitable surf spot to ensure you progress and stay stoked.
HOW TO CHOOSE A SURFBOARD
Choosing the right surfboard for you is key to learning how to surf, small light boards offer less buoyancy requiring a lot more strength and effort to paddle than a beginner friendly long board. The extra buoyancy of a long board makes it easier to paddle, catch waves and to stand up on so when it comes to learning you’ll benefit greatly from a big floaty board. Long boards are generally thick, wide and around 8-10 feet in height , this is ideal for an average sized adult.
CHOOSE A BEGINNER SURF SPOT
Choosing your surf spot wisely is one of the best things you can do to ensure you progress and have a good time. Unlike a ski resort where every run is marked with a color so you can match the run with your ability, surfing requires you to use your own judgement and knowledge to decide whats suitable for you. Unfortunately it’s easy to find yourself on a blue or black (difficult) run so to speak resulting in an unproductive experience that can make learning to surf seem almost impossible.The idea is to find a spot with functional waves for learning and one that is free from any obvious hazards. If you get the chance we highly recommend taking a lesson from a certified surf school to get you started or even better yet, experiencing on of our surf coaching camps.
Green waves are what we call waves that have a wall and break to either the left or right, riding these waves is the eventual goal in surfing although learning to catch green waves is the hardest part of learning to surf. That’s why beginners surfers are better off starting out catching whitewater waves as they are easy to catch and allow you to master all the basic skills you will need to progress.Whitewater is the foamy part which is what exists after a wave has broken. Start out in these white waves and you will master all the basic skills of surfing quicker and easier.
Choosing a good beginner surf spot is also important for safety reasons, the ocean can be a wild place and can easily provide dangerous situations which is the last thing your looking for when your starting out surfing waves.
A safe surf spot should be free of rocks, lots of other surfers and rip currents.
Rip currents are commonly found where surfers ride waves, we discuss how to identify and deal with these in our Rip current 101 guide.
The best way to gauge the waves is to spend 15 minutes on the beach watching them , this way you can see if there are any hazards and choose the exact spot where you can find some long whitewater rides.
LEARN TO SURF IN STEPS
One of the best beginner surf tips you can get is to break learning to surf up into steps. Many beginners head straight out and join experienced surfers in the green waves, this makes it really hard to master the basic surf skills that form the foundation of your surfing because initially you won’t spend much time actually up and surfing waves.
Surf your best has created a systematic step by step approach to learning that ensures you master the right skills in the right order so you don’t become held back by any bad habits.
Check out our surf coaching camps to learn more.