What’s the key to keeping our lineups safe and fun?
Knowing and spreading the unwritten rulebook to surfing- surf etiquette! So, here we are! Ready to pass down and circulate some surf etiquette/safety tips, for whoever may need it.
Tip #1: Get to know your surf level
Whether you’re brand new to surfing, or already have some experience, it’s essential to find a surf spot that suits your skill level. Surfing at a break that’s right for you is the best way to avoid unwanted surf incidents- whether that means avoiding crowded lineups, difficult waves, sharp reef, etc.
It’s certainly courageous (and cool) to push outside of your comfort zone and surf difficult waves! You should only try to push these limits once you’re completely confident that you can control your surfboard and maneuver around other surfers or obstacles in the lineup.
What’s the best way to find a break thats right for you?
One recommendation, besides reflecting on your own surf sessions and experiences, is to talk with experienced surfers in your area. If you’re at your local beach and wondering if the break or conditions are appropriate for your level, scope out an experienced surfer who’s close by and just start chatting! Chances are, they’ll be willing to point you in the right direction.
Tip #2: Practice reading the “lineup”
Getting to know your own surf abilities isn’t the only piece to the puzzle. It’s also important to pay attention to other surfers in the lineup! When you’re out in the water (and even before you paddle out) you should definitely be taking mental notes on the other surfers in the water.
Which surfers are the local legends? Are there any beginners? Who is catching the most waves?
Paying attention to other surfers will help you to make better informed decisions about where to sit in the lineup and which waves to paddle for. Another perk? If you’re respectful and observant to others in the lineup, they’ll be respectful and observant right on back!
Tip #3: Avoid ditching your board
Here at Surf With Amigas we put it like this: “If your board is 9ft long and your leash is also 9ft long… that’s an 18ft radius of destruction”. Learn how to turtle roll and do it often. It’s even fun to practice this technique with a surfboard in the pool! Don’t know how to turtle? Watch our tutorial here. It’s also important to practice how to dismount from your board at the end of your waves without launching the board into the air.
Keeping your board close by is extremely important when it comes to surf safety. If you see your surf buddies ditching their boards, spread the word! Give them the “radius” talk, then teach them how to do the turtle roll!
Surf safe. Be respectful. Have fun!