3 Surf Etiquette Tips That Every Surfer Should Know

What’s the key to keeping our lineups safe and fun?

Knowing and practicing surf etiquette! Familiarizing yourself with these unwritten rules of surfing will empower you to catch more waves, surf safely, and feel confident with other surfers in the lineup. Here are 3 easy-to-remember surf etiquette tips that every surfer should know.

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 can be exhilarating) to push outside of your comfort zone and surf difficult waves! However, you should only really 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. 

So what’s the best way to find a surf break that’s right for your level?

One recommendation 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. If you’re at the water’s edge trying to decide if you’ve chosen the right spot, check out the other surfers in the water. Do you see anyone riding a similar surfboard? Do you see anyone at a similar level?  

Tip #2: Practice reading the “lineup”

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Surf University 101 – Expand your Surf Knowledge in an Online Class with Holly

holly beck, surf with amigas, surf university, online surf coaching

I hope you live in a place where you are able to surf in these times. Whether or not you are lucky enough to be in that category, it’s a great time to expand your surf knowledge! Holly has recently hosted a series of online pop-up courses and is coming back with a three part course she’s calling “Surf University: 101”. Watch the teaser to get some highlights of what to expect and check out more info below.

Join the class to learn the following:

Surf etiquette : Many of you will know the very basics of surf etiquette (the surfer closest to the breaking part of the wave has priority), but there are a lot of grey areas and exceptions. I’ll cover all of those.  How to safely paddle back out after a wave at a crowded surf spot. I know many people worry about being in someone’s way, we will talk through some strategies to paddle back out with confidence. Some strategies and tips to catch more waves even if you live in a crowded surf zone.
How to read a surf forecast : Surf forecasts where the forecaster gives you a paragraph about what you can expect are rarely accurate or tuned to the type of surf you as an individual might want. I’ll explain how to read the buoy readings and make your own decision. We’ll cover what each number means, how to predict how big the waves will be at your spot based on the numbers, and get into the mechanics of why that is.
Three tips to overcoming fear in bigger waves : I’ll tell a few stories in which I thought I was going to die, and what I learned from each one.