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                                                 Surfs Up!
                                              Table of Contents

                                              History of Surfing
                                       Different Types of Boards
                                        Design and Construction
                                        Vintage and Longboards
                                 How to Buy Your First Surfboard
                                          Surfboard Accessories
                                          Good Surfing Manners
                                        What is the Right Wave?
                                      Pre-paddling and Paddling
                                                 How to Angle
                                        Catching the Right Wave
                              Review of Top Board Manufacturers
                                        Where Should You Surf?
                              History of Surfing

History of Surfing

Surfing is undoubtedly one of the oldest and most popularly practiced

sports in the world. There is an art in wave riding, which is a blend of

overall athleticism and comprehension of power and beauty of nature. This

leisure activity is among the few sports that are able to create their very

own lifestyle and culture.

The act of skillfully riding waves using wooden board was first done in

Western Polynesia, dating back to about three thousand years ago. It is

believed that the first-ever surfers were native fishermen who then

discovered that riding waves could be an efficient method to get to shore

with their very own catch. From then on, catching waves eventually

developed to become a significant part of daily work. Then it became a

form of a pastime. The change revolutionized surfing.

It should be noted that there is actually no existing record of the time when

stand-up surfing first became a form of sport. Some researchers assert

that during the 1600s, kings, queens, and all other people in the Sandwich

Isles had been into a sport they called heenalu (wave sliding in English). In

the old Hawaiian language, “hee” literally means change from solid form to
liquid, while “nalu” simply refers to the surfing motion that is uniquely

facilitated by a wave.

The beginning

Surfing as an artistic activity was initially observed in 1777 when

Europeans (actually crew members on board Dolphin Ship) first interacted

with Polynesians in Tahiti. Researchers, however, note that before the

meet, surfing was actually already a central part of the ancient Polynesian

culture, predating natives contact with Europeans. The community chief

was said to be the most skilled rider, using the best surf board

manufactured from the best tree ever.

Captain James Cook, a navigator, described the way Tahitians caught

waves using their outrigger canoes for the fun of it. He said that one day,

after waking up at Matavai Point, from his tent he saw a man who was

paddling in a very small canoe; he was so quick and there was a look about

him that exuded eagerness. The man sat almost motionless and was easily

carried along in a swift rate by a wave. The man then landed in the beach.

When the man restarted the same activity, Cook concluded that the native

man was obviously feeling supreme pleasure by doing it.
The first ever Polynesian settlers who landed in Hawaii were skilled in

simple surfing. After several hundreds of years of riding Hawaiian waves,

surfing emerged as a popular Hawaiian sport form. Hawaiians who surfed

skillfully were called high class or “aliI.” They claimed the lands highest

reputation for their uncanny skills using board on waves.

These people had their own culture. They developed their very own board

shapers, prayers, and wood carvings. They had their beaches developed to

facilitate showing off their surfing talent to bystanders. No other people

dared to try riding on waves for genuine fear of potentially getting

punished and eventually dying. The early surfboards underwent sacred

rituals before their construction. There were only three types of trees that

were used to make surfboards.

Modern emergence

Unfortunately, when missionaries from Germany and Scotland arrived in

the area in 1821, Polynesian cultural practices and traditions were

forbidden, including leisure sports like surfing. When the 20th century

arrived, almost all Polynesian traditional practices had disappeared.

However, there were still several Hawaiians who were able to continue

surfing and crafting their surf boards.
Modern surfing began at the onset of the 20th century when Hawaiians

who lived near Waikiki started reviving surfing as a recreation. They

eventually re-established the activity as a form of a leisure sport.

Ambassador of Aloha, avid waterman, and Olympic medalist Duke

Kahanamoku was responsible for helping expose leisure surfing to the rest

of the world. His role was memorialized in 2002 when the United States

Postal Service issued a first-class postage stamp to honor him.

The development and culture of surfing emerged in the modern world. It

primarily centered in three specific locations, namely Australia, California, and

of course, Hawaii. In the 1960s, surfing had a small following, but through the

years, its popularity has obviously climbed throughout the world.

                          Different Types of Boards

Different Types of Boards

Surfing could not be possible without surfboards. They come in various

shapes and sizes. There are several types of boards that are available

commercially to surfing enthusiasts. Thus, choosing a good and

appropriate surfboard has become a daunting activity for beginners and for

experienced surfers.
Today, surfboards have become more specific after being compounded by

improved technologies and modern ways to surf. Through the years,

different styles of surfing have emerged. This is the reason why surfers

from all around the world are finding it more challenging to find and buy

the best surfboards.

For starters, using an appropriate type of surfboard could make learning

the activity more fun and improving skills much easier. For beginners, the

best boards are those that are wide, light, and thick. You should take note

that wider and larger surfboards are logically more buoyant and are

allowing easier picking of waves, specifically weak and small waves.

Larger style surfboards are popularly called “mals” (long boards) or

mini-mals (fun boards). They are most ideal as learning surfboards. Most

of such boards are coming with soft top decks that do not require any form

of waxing of the topmost surface for wave riding. This way, possible build

up of dirty wax and melting wax (which could affect quality and

functionality) are prevented.

Because such boards are soft, they do not hurt especially if the surfer is

accidentally hit in the head, in the face, and in other body parts by the
deck. Experts recommend mini-mals and fun boards for their great

flotation. It should be noted that the better a surfboard floats, the faster it

paddles and the easier it catches waves. There is more time for a surfer to

get to his feet before the wave breaks. The size is just perfect to handle the


Long boards

In general, long boards are surfboards that measure about 8.5 feet in

length. They float when used by anyone. The boards are not very easy to

maneuver but they provide better and easier paddling and catching of


The use of long boards is ideal when waves are up to waist high. They make

paddling effortless with buoyancy. Long boards offer a stable platform for

facilitating easy moves. In observation, surfers in all levels enjoy riding

long boards. Once a beginner surfer learns paddling through whitewater,

the long board could be a great tool for the next step in learning. Modern

long boards are refined, are lighter, and are easily maneuverable. Usually,

tail shapes in such boards are either rounded-pin or square shaped.

Short boards
Short boards are short, fast, and are easier to turn. However, a surfer

needs more experience before riding one. These boards make it harder to

catch waves, requiring experienced balance for a rider to remain standing.

In the commercial market, short boards are considered as

high-performance and reliably shaped boards.

These surfboards are typically 5.6 feet to 7 feet in length and about 16

inches to 19 inches in thickness. “Fishes” are one of the types of short

boards. These have wider noses. They are considered better alternatives

for surfing in small waves. They have extra float and shorter but more

pivotal boards.

As mentioned, surfers short boards are considered performance boards.

They are typically used for shredding and ripping. These surfboards should

not be used by beginners.

Fun boards

These surfboards are considered as ideal crossbreeds of long boards and

short boards. Fun boards are much easier to turn compared to long boards.

They are much more buoyant and easily catch waves. In many cases, fun
boards are called “mini-mals” or “mini-tankers.” They handle good surf and

small surf with easier paddling.

The performance of fun boards are usually improved through a three-fin

combination complete with down rails and edges, which give the boards

higher carving capability. Wave catching and paddling ability of fun boards

are much better than their counterpart shorter - performance boards

because the forward portion is much wider in comparison.

Fun boards also facilitate better flotation and are easier to paddle. They feature

stability when surfers wait for waves while standing up on the board. The fairly

light weight makes these boards fun and easy to carry around. Fun boards are

for surfers who aim to have more fun surfing.

                           Design and Construction

Design and Construction

If you are into surfing, you should be very particular about the kind of tools

and materials you use. Of course, your surfboard is a must-own if you want

to pursue this recreational activity. Finding the right surfboard should be

fun and exhilarating.
It should be appropriate for your own weight, height, surfing skill, ability,

and of course the type of wave that you want to pursue. You should not be

surprised that design and construction are very crucial.

There are just too many kinds of surfboards that are currently available on

the market. You should be reminded that not all boards are appropriate for

your level of surfing. Beginners should stick to recommended types of

boards just as highly skilled surfers/experts should use surfboards for their

level. Before you head to any sports retailer to find and buy the right

surfboard for you, it should be noted that design and construction of the

boards vary.

It is advisable that you first understand all about surfboards. When you

intend to do so, you should understand that certain types of boards are

appropriate for you, while some are not. In finding and buying the right

surfboard, you need to know more about the physical characteristics of the

board, the basic types of categories, the right design for your needs, and

lastly, the construction.

Surfboard design
How should you choose the right design? To begin with, a surfboard should

not be just a hard piece of sports equipment to purchase. There are

variables in design that effectively influence the basic way on how the

board would ride waves.

There are many shapes and models. You might also consider getting your

own custom-shaped boards. The basic design features could be confusing

at first but as you progress, you can sort things out and find yourself

buying the right one for you.

Before deciding on a surfboard design to buy, honestly assess yourself.

Know your ability level. If you think you are still not a good surfer or if you

are a beginner, look at boards with greater width and thickness. With

regards to size and weight, of course, the heavier and bigger you are, the

thicker and bigger the surfboard design should be so you have greater

buoyancy. Then, consider the size of waves as well as the type of breaks

(waves) you would surf.

No specific design of surfboard works in all kinds of waves. Different types

of waves require different designs and construction of surfboards. Here are

some of the popular board designs available on the market.
Tail and rocker designs

Tail designs of boards include what are called round, pin, square, squash,

and swallow. Remember that wider tails are for facilitating greater changes

in directions on small waves (turning). However, such tails could cause lack

of control on bigger surf. Squash and square tails give larger tail area to

allow surfers to take abrupt end points during turns and hard jamming.

Swallow tails give way for deeper curves.

Rocker could affect turning and speed. In general, a straight or flat rocker

could assist in speeding down a wave line. Tighter turns in pockets could be

achieved through surfboards with greater curve and rocker that allows for

pivotal turns. Size of tail rocker could determine how surfboards will turn.

Rails and fins

The side of the surfboard is called the rail. Boards could have low, medium,

and high rails that affect how boxy or thin the equipment looks and feels.

Surfboards with thin rails are sensitive, while fuller rails could facilitate

more resistance specifically to turning. Usually, fuller rails are associated

with flatter decks. This design and construction could help provide more

volume to the board.
Fins are the part of the surfboard that facilitates steering. Usually, fins are

permanently attached (glassed) or are detachable systems. Detachable fins

allow swapping of fin sizes and removing of them completely, depending on the

need. Small fins are for loose turning and sliding, while large fins create greater

holding power. Most surfboards available commercially have three fins, hence,

they are called tri-fin. Rail design, tail type, presence of a rocker, and kind of fin

could significantly affect how a surfboard paddles, steers, rides, and turns for

various types of waves.

                            Vintage and Longboards

Vintage and Longboards

Except for body surfing, true surfing could never be possible without

surfboards. The equipment is considered the very essence of the activity.

Through the years, different types, designs, and sizes of surfboards have

been made and sold commercially to the public. It is logical that the

original surfboards made and used by ancient Polynesians are very

different from the surfboards that people use today.
Finding old surfboards and possible accessories could help in the

preservation of the long and interesting history of surfing. Needless to say,

there are now many individuals and organizations that are interested and

dedicated in the preservation of numerous surfing artifacts. Many surfing

enthusiasts find it worthwhile to help keep the records and history of the

sport and equipment. Vintage surfboards are now considered priceless

possessions. They are treated like antiques, which are valued more as they

age. All around the world, there are vintage surfboard collectors.

Surfing as a sport is very unique because it involves different lifestyles. In

some cases, the activity is even considered as having a spiritual nature.

This makes it more interesting to find and collect vintage surfboards. There

is much information that old boards can convey. Surfers are not the only

enthusiasts that are captivated and awed by vintage surfboards. Even

ordinary people and researchers find their genuine interest in them.

Vintage surfboards

Vintage surfboard collectors can be considered as crucial players in the

appropriate preservation of the interesting history of surfing. Some call

them caretakers of rare, old vintage boards. Others simply look up to them

for having that passion.
Collecting vintage surfboards can be a very expensive and luxurious

hobby. Still, many are convincing more people to join the fun and the

interest in finding and collecting vintage surfboards.

Surfboard collectors and enthusiasts will always be crucial to the

preservation of surfing history. Major surfing history preservation groups

and organizations always consider vintage boards as valuable items that

they should preserve.

Usefulness of longboards

Just like vintage surfboards, longboards are also collected. Unlike vintage

boards, longboards are collected to be used, though some enthusiasts

collect them for the sake of collection. Longboards are surfboards that

measure about 8.5 feet in length. These boards were very popular in the

50’s and 60’s and can be considered their own “vintage” category.

They float when used by practically anyone. The boards are also not very

easy to maneuver but they provide better and easier paddling and even


Main usage of longboards is when waves go up to about waist high. They
make paddling effortless with buoyancy. Longboards facilitate stable

platform for facilitating easy movements. Surfers in all levels enjoy riding

longboards. Once a surfer who is a beginner learns paddling through

whitewater, the longboard is a great tool for learning. Modern longboards

are refined and are lighter, easily maneuverable. Usually, tail shapes in

such boards are either rounded-pin or square-shaped.

Longboards may not be as expensive and as sought-after as vintage surfboards

but they surely are as important, though in a different level. Longboards are

meant to be used, whereas vintage boards are meant just to be collected for the

sake of possibly preserving the history of surfing. Longboards are easily found

and purchased at sports equipment centers, whereas vintage surfboards are

obviously rare and expensive.

                      How to Buy Your First Surfboard

How to Buy Your First Surfboard

Nothing is more important to every beginning surfer than finding,

choosing, and buying the very first surfboard. The narrow and thin rockets

that surfboard stars are riding are absolutely exciting. However, they could

spell disaster to beginners who are still learning initial surfing techniques.
If you want to try out the leisure activity, you should understand that

buying a board is necessary.

In reality, buying your first surfboard could be a very exciting experience.

Don’t become confused by the many designs, shapes, and brands you find

on the market. It is like shopping for clothes. However, you should not be

totally overwhelmed and overcome by the excitement. When buying your

first surfboard, you should consider many factors. Your goal should be to

make sure you are making the best choice.

Once you have bought a surfboard and after you actually use it, the

surfboard officially become yours. If you are serious about surfing as a

hobby, you should make sure you are buying the best surfboard on the

market. Here are several practical tips to keep in mind:

Used or new

First, decide between buying a new and a used surfboard. You could treat

purchasing the surf equipment just like buying any musical instrument. If

you are aiming to save significantly on cost, buying a used surfboard would

be best for you in the beginning. Not all equipment that is sold as

second-hand are inferior compared to brand new.
You might be surprised to learn that many surfboards sold as second-hand

equipment could be much better and more durable than some brand new


If you have decided to buy used surfboards, find a trustworthy. If expert

surfers have recommendations, heed their advice. If you could buy used

boards directly from expert surfers, it would be even better.

When buying used equipment, it is always best to thoroughly inspect the

item before closing the deal. You do not need to be an expert surfer to be

able to tell which surfboard could be best for you.

Decide to buy a board that is manufactured by a local surfboard shaper

when you buy a new one. You would eventually realize why doing so is a

must. A hand-shaped board made of epoxy and fiberglass material is

recommended. As much as possible, avoid buying soft surfboards.

Rounding the shop

As you roam around the shop to find and buy the best surfboard, ask a

shaper or a surf shop employee for helpful assistance. Disclose your level
of surfing skills, where you surf, how long you have been into the activity,

and how often you go surfing.

Such information is crucial so that the employee can recommend models,

designs, and brands that are appropriate for you.

Your very first surfboard need not be expensive. For sure, a $400 surfboard

surely would ding (crack or smash) like a $100 surfboard. When buying

equipment, remember that it is not all about looks. Ignore small dings and

minor yellowing (of surface color). Avoid dings that show de-lamination or

foaming. Be guided accordingly before going to a shop to buy your


Avoid confusion

As a beginner, choose surfboards that are big and thick. This is because

such boards float better and facilitate easier paddling. If you are awed by

the small and narrow surfboards that are used by experts, understand that

such boards require greater ability and skills in surfing. They are not

recommended for beginners.

Do not pay particular attention to tail shape, fins, and accessories. These
parts of the board actually do not matter much for beginners. When surfing

for the first three to six months, there is no need to actually worry about

maneuvering and turning the board in any way.

Lastly, prioritize performance. As you buy your first surfboard, aim not to

compromise performance over colors and even logos. Remember that a shiny

new surfboard will not guarantee that you could surf like Kelly Slater. Surfing is

indeed a difficult sport. Practice makes perfect.

                            Surfboard Accessories

Surfboard Accessories

If you have visited a sports shop or a surfing store, you probably notice

that there are a ton of surfboard accessories available. You might be

confused about the right and necessary surfboard accessories that you

need to buy.

If you think surfboards are all you need to get for this activity, you might

reconsider your thoughts and start looking at different accessories that

could be attached to your surfboards.
No, you do not need all the surfboard accessories, but certainly, you do

need the basics. If you are a beginner, you should not focus much on

accessorizing your surfboard. At least, not yet. You see, surfing is a hard

activity and you need to learn more. Practice makes perfect. There is a

need to first concentrate on getting on and learning all the basic and

necessary moves when surfing.

Are you awed by the many professional surfers who own surfboards that

are lavishly and aesthetically accessorized? It is not surprising to be

amazed by them. But you should ask yourself, are those accessories really

necessary? You might be surprised to realize that most surfboard

accessories are not actually useful and helpful. They are just attached and

used with the boards to provide aesthetics.

Surfboards are of course your first and necessary must-have item.

Funboards, longboards, shortboards, guns, and fins are available. The

specific type of board you must ride should depend on numerous factors

like wave conditions and your body’s size, experience, stance, and overall

physical fitness. Epoxy and other lighter materials make good surfboards

that are lighter and significantly stronger. They could be best for

Basic surfboard accessories

Have you heard of fins? They are the part of the surfboard that facilitates

steering. Fins usually are permanently attached (glassed) to boards or are

acting detachable systems.

Detachable fins allow swapping of fin sizes and removal of them completely

depending on the need. Small fins are for loose turning and sliding, while

large fins create greater holding power. Most surfboards that are

commercially available have three fins, hence, they are called tri-fin. Rail

design, tail type, presence of a rocker, and kinds of fins used could

significantly affect how a surfboard paddles, steers, rides, and turns in

various types of waves.

Next, the rocker is another accessory. It affects turning and speed. In

general, a straight or flat rocker could assist in speeding down a wave line.

Tighter turns in pockets could be achieved through surfboards with a

greater curve and a rocker that allows pivotal turns. The size of the tail

rocker can determine how surfboards turn. Experts assert that rockers are


The side of the surfboard is called the rail. Boards could have low, medium,
and high rails that affect how boxy or thin the equipment looks and feels.

Surfboards with thin rails are sensitive, while fuller rails could facilitate

more resistance specifically to turning. Usually, fuller rails are associated

with flatter decks. This design and construction could help provide more

volume to the board.

Lastly, tail designs also vary. When buying boards, remember that wider

tails make turning easier and facilitate for greater changes in directions on

small waves. However, such tails could cause lack of control on bigger

waves. Squash and square tails give larger tail area to allow surfers to take

abrupt end points during turns and hard jamming. Swallow tails give way

for deeper curves.

Surfboard bags

Surfboard bags are considered important surfboard accessories. Many

surfers do not see the need for bags. Others make it a point to spend the

money for good surfboard bags. In general, surfboard bags are special

bags that are designed and made to house surfboards. They are for basic

protection from dust and other substances.
Surfboard bags are usually made attractive and long lasting. Such accessories

help protect the surfboard from potentially harmful elements. They could also

bolster the lifespan of the board. It would be advantageous for any surfer to

invest in surfboard bags.



A wetsuit is truly a must especially if you are still an average surfer and you

are aiming to surf all year round. It is advisable to wear wetsuits when

surfing, especially if you are a beginner or still an average surfer. Even

expert and professional surfers do wear wetsuits when surfing.

Because of the great demand, the technology used in designing and

manufacturing wetsuits has really come a long way compared to the older,

restricting rubber outfits from the not so distant past. These days, it is not

surprising to find wetsuits that are significantly super light and super


Material and construction

Modern wetsuits are manufactured using neoprene, a type of stretchy
synthetic rubber material. Many items are made of a number of pieces of

neoprene that are stitched together to provide cover to desired body parts.

Thus, some wetsuits are sold and used as shorties (suits that feature short

arms and legs) and as full suits. There are even wetsuits that feature

detachable legs and arms, to provide users with variations and to suit


Neoprene comes in various levels of thickness. Some could come at about

2 mm, while others are as thick as 6 mm. In general, thicker neoprene

makes the wetsuit warmer, which would be ideal for surfing in cold areas.

Surfers who are regularly braving extreme cold conditions are usually

wearing semi-dry wetsuits that are not made of neoprene but of some

other hot material.

An average wetsuit should contain a zip so that you can get in and out of

them quickly and comfortably. Tight wetsuits are tough to wear. Zips are

located at various places in the suit. Conventionally, such zips are located

down the wetsuits back. Others could be found across the surfers

shoulders or even high up on the surfers chest.

Some modern wetsuits are made of neoprene that gets so stretchy, you

could easily get in through its neck. These wetsuits are considered pretty

How wetsuits work

A typical wetsuit works by effectively trapping thin layers of water between

the skin and wetsuit. In this way, the normal body temperature heats the

trapped water, which would then serve as a warm water blanket.

Thus, finding, buying, and using a perfectly fitting wetsuit is truly a must.

It should be nicely tight and rightly fitting, not too tight that it prevents free

and comfortable movement. It is also important that wetsuits do not

contain baggy areas where too much water could be trapped and make the

surface farther from the surfers body.

If you are surfing in cold water, it is important that you choose and use a

tight fitting wetsuit especially in the neck area. This is because you will not

be comfortable ducking under waves then getting an unlikely blast of cold

water going down your back. Tightness is therefore an important factor.

When surfing in warm water, a wetsuit is purely optional.

Choosing the best wetsuit
When buying wetsuits for surfing, remember that it is very important to

make sure the suit is adequately snug, not too loose nor too tight. Very

tight wetsuits do not allow for comfortable movement, which is essential

when surfing. When your arms are not freely moving, you tire more quickly

when paddling. If it is too loose, you will have water moving inside the

wetsuit, making the wetsuit lose its insulating effect.

As you buy a wetsuit, be sure there is no glaring rough spot on the item. Such

spots are usually the main cause of rashes. Surfing commands many repetitive

movements. You do not want even a minor irritation.

Lastly, do not hesitate to try any wetsuit on. You should make sure it fits your

body perfectly. You may notice that every brand features a slightly different cut,

which may or may not be ideal for your specific body type and size.


Bodysurfing/ Bodyboarding

Bodysurfing or bodyboarding is basically a sport wherein a person rides

waves without the use of buoyant equipment like surfboards. In general,

bodysurfers are only equipped with a pair of reliable swim fins (rubber or
plastic flippers worn on legs or arms) that are especially made for the

activity. Such swim fins are designed to stay on even during the most

turbulent wave conditions. They are shaped to specifically optimize

propulsion. Bodysurfers use such items to aid positioning on the surface of

the wave. Other similar items that serve as alternatives include hand guns,

hand paddles, wave blades, redwings, and many others that are

specifically used to gain additional speed across wave surfaces.

To be able to get above any wave, bodysurfers need to pick up a strategic

direction. They must paddle or swim strongly and use their backs or even

their outstretched arms to be able to ride waves in an almost streamlined

position. Right and left turns could be performed by the surfer through

digging his shoulder into the waves. This would cause him to slide to his

side of the wave. To be able to exit waves quickly, he needs to simply drop

his head and then tumble-turn to get out of the wave.

The basics

Many bodysurfers have natural minimalist attitudes toward riding waves.

They also consider their sport as more than just another form of

wave-riding activity. Velocity is slower even without the use of boards as

there is increased drag and there is limited planing ability. Thus
bodysurfers tend to focus more on barrel riding. In general, bodysurfers

usually tend to congregate on shore-breaks or on slower waves, where

barrels that are closed out are usual. Being tubed is logically considered a

basic in this activity. This could help explain the need for superior attitude

that bodysurfers should have toward the sport. Most surfers in Hawaii

consider bodysurfing as a strategic way to train for big wave riding.

The Wedge is among the most popular bodysurfing spots or places in the

planet. It is situated in Newport Beach in California. There, waves could

reach as high as 30 feet and more. This phenomenon is attributed to huge

southern hemisphere-generated and hurricane-generated swells

especially during summer, spring, and fall. The waves found in The Wedge

are produced by swells that hit the jetty. They rebound to become waves

that create a wedge effect. Thus, The Wedge is only best for experienced

and professional wave riders. The spot is to bodysurfing or bodyboarding

what Banzai Pipeline (surf reef break in Hawaii) actually is to surfing. The

worlds best bodysurfers should prove themselves nowhere else but at The

Wedge, just like stand up surfers need to prove themselves at Banzai


Contests for bodysurfing
Every year, there are regular competitions that highlight bodysurfing. The

Pipeline Bodysurfing Classic is one of those. The event is a competition that

runs at the popular Banzai Pipeline. It is considered as a world class event,

yet considered to be among the truly unique and outstanding underground

surf competitions in the entire world. Many bodysurfers generally consider

the competition as an important and premiere international sports event.

It is among the rare opportunities that give bodysurfers reasons to access

Pipelines waves.

Aside from that contest, the World Bodysurfing Championships is another

world renowned bodysurfing event in the world. It began in 1977 and is

running yearly every August. The competition takes place in Oceanside,

California. Then, there is the Manhattan Beach Bodysurfing Competition

that is part of the popular International Surf Festival held every year in

Manhattan Beach also in California. The event is regularly sponsored by the

Gillis Beach Bodysurfing Association, the oldest bodysurfing organization

or club in the entire United States.

In Mexico the Torneo Internacional de Bodysurf Las Escolleras is held every

year. The event is mounted between April and June in a place called

Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo. It is a tournament where bodysurfing competitors aim to

challenge the very powerful waves that are known for notoriety. The event is
also accompanied by huge and extravagant after-parties featuring live music

and festive dancing. Many bystanders and bodysurfing fanatics come and merge

during the annual competition for fun and adventure.

                            Good Surfing Manners

Good Surfing Manners

Nobody could contest the fact that surfing is a fun and enjoyable activity.

Surfers could attest that the activity never fails to give them a sense of

adventure. There is contentment and of course, excitement. It is not

surprising that surfing is one of the most popular and most sought-after

extreme leisure recreational activities around.

Anywhere in the world where there are beaches, surfing becomes more

popular. If in the past, surfing is only enjoyed in Hawaii, now, it is done in

many other parts of the world, like California, the Philippines, in Australia,

in South America, and even in specific parts of Europe.

Needless to say, surfing should be all about respect. Surfers are expected

to respect the pros, the locals, and even fellow surfers all the time.

Courtesy is always expected. Many times, people overlook the fact that
surfers still practice good manners despite enjoying the rough waves. On

many occasions, fights and arguments inevitably arise due to lack of

proper etiquette.

Here are several good surfing rules of etiquette that surfers need to

observe while enjoying the activity.

Before beginning, surfers need to make sure they have surfboards,

wetsuits, good attitude, and rightful skills. A pair of fists is not necessary,

though many surfers could not help but be involved in brawls maybe due to


1.    Prior to going out to enjoy the activity, thoroughly study the break

(wave). You should determine the specific area where many other surfers

and people come to try to catch and enjoy waves. You should not resort to

entering crowded locations. Paddle into an area that is least crowded. If

possible, go to a channel. There, you could easily paddle closer into areas

where actual waves are apparently breaking in the lineup. Do not surf

where other surfers form crowds to avoid getting into any unlikely


2.    Beginners should not surf in areas where the best waves are. If you
are a beginner, be honest and admit to yourself that you may still not be

ready enough to handle intense waves. Instead, go to an area with subtler

waves, which could be more forgiving for starters like you.

Locals at an area where there are advanced breaks (more challenging

waves) would surely welcome you in, if you know exactly what you are

doing. Anyone would like a surfer who could float in an impact zone while

trying to catch whitewater on an ordinary overhead day.

3.    Always remember that you are out to surf, not to socialize. Keep

talking to a minimum unless you brought in a friend. In general, talking

about tips and insights about surfing is fine. Do not narrate your entire life

story. Other surfers want to catch waves just like you do so give them the

chance to do so.

4.    Do not forget to respect the locals. You should know that they know

most about the best breaks in the area. Most of them would want those

breaks for their own, not for outsiders. If you establish a negative vibe with

them you can forget trying to convince them to tell you where those breaks

are. If they ask you to leave, go immediately. There are more than enough

waves out there to ride. Do not get into a fight just to catch perfect waves.

Not catching a break in a day is not worth all the broken bones and bruises
(especially to your ego.)

5.    As you catch a wave, remember to check the inside first before you

take off. See if other people are going for the same wave. The practice is

just like crossing a busy street. Do not go when someone else is coming

from the right or left. In general, the surfer who is closest to a breaking

wave has the practical and logical right of way. Do not steal a wave from

another surfer unless you are really out to make an enemy.

6.    Immediately apologize if you make a mistake. Surfers do make mistakes.

Other surfers would easily recognize it. If you cause trouble to others, be quick

in acknowledging your mistake and apologizing for it. Always respect other


                            What is the Right Wave?

What is the Right Wave?

Surfing would not be possible without waves. As you all know, the activity

is very much dependent on the roughness of the water. In general, the

rougher the water is, the better it is for surfing.

Waves facilitate good surfing. Without right waves, it would be impossible
for any surfer to at least enjoy the fun activity. This is the reason why not

all beaches are appropriate for surfing.

Surfers know that waves are what surfing is all about. Understanding

waves and finding the right ones would not be possible if surfers know less

about such water phenomenon. What types of waves should be used for

the activity? Where do you find the right waves?

Three types of waves

It is important to identify the three basic types of waves so you could

determine which kind is the best for your surfing activity. These are the

beach break, the point break, and the reef break. To begin with, beach

breaks are waves that break right on the sandy seabed. These waves are

best for beginners. Waves at Hossegor, Southern France are classic

examples of such types of waves. These breaks could hold perfect barrels

for up to 20 feet high.

Point break is a type of wave that easily breaks into a rocky point. Ideal

examples of this kind of waves are those in Bells Beach, Australia. The title

of the Hollywood film Point Break was obtained from this kind of wave. Reef

Break is a kind of wave that breaks, as the name implies, over a rock
seabed or a coral reef. Reef breaks are usually the waves that people see

on surfing videos. Such waves can be truly unforgiving but are certainly

very good to look at. They could be very risky for beginners and

non-professional surfers. Waves in Cloudbreak in Fiji are reef breaks.

About lefts and rights

In surfing, you encounter tricky and confusing vocabulary entries like left

hands and right hands. You need to understand the activity more if you

want to know more about such terms. A wave could be a right or a left

depending on the direction that it breaks from a surfers point of view when

riding and paddling a wave.

When a surfer paddles to catch any wave and it breaks from the right to the

left, the wave is termed as left. In such a case, the surfer needs to turn left

to be able to get on to the wave. From the beachside, the wave would be

seen as breaking to the right. The right is of course the opposite of the left,

in case you still have not worked that out yet.

On the other hand, there is such a thing as a peak. In general, a peak is a

type of wave that is breaking to form a wave that could be ridden at both to

the left and to the right. Thus, two surfers could possibly surf at the same
time using the same wave but in different directions.

The wind

Obviously and logically, the wind is specifically where waves are coming

from. It should be the ultimate deciding factor when you are thinking about

surfing on a day or not. Before you get to any beach to surf, you should first

determine the kind and nature of wind that is prevailing. Wind could vary

from season to season. In some cases, a beach could be ideal for surfing

only in specific seasons and tend not to be ideal when that season ends.

Onshore winds are those that are considered worst for surfing activities. In

this case, the wind is blowing to the sea, ensuring that all waves crumble to

lose shape. Thus, waves are sometimes not ideal for surfing. Cross shore

winds are not desirable either. Such winds do not give shape to waves.

Offshore wind is the best for surfing. It ensures rolling waves so that they are

formed and break cleanly. For surfers, the best waves are those that are

produced through the help of offshore wind. Thus, before you go surfing, check

out the prevailing weather.

                          Pre-paddling and Paddling
Pre-Paddling and Paddling

Paddling through the waves is important when surfing. Those who are into

the activity understand that paddling is the way to get to surfing. It

facilitates mobility and movement while riding the waves. It is something

surfers need to learn and master if they are intending to do well while


Pre-paddling involves necessary preparations before actually paddling. It

is common knowledge that surfing is a very hard task. That is why it is

important that surfers take ample and appropriate preparation for paddling

and for overall surfing. Every serious surfer should learn about paddling if

he or she really wants to understand surfing.

Skill in paddling

There are three main skills that help any surfer paddle properly and

effectively along waves. To be able to progress though break zones, you

should learn more about what is called pushing up, busting through, and

doing the Eskimo roll. It is important to take good paddling techniques and

achieve correct body positioning on the board. Maximum thrust from every
paddle should also be attained to gain and at the same time maintain


Pushing up is used on smaller or whitewashed waves. It is ideal when the

surfer is intending to paddle over peaking green (shallow or small) waves.

To do so, paddle hard and at the same time fast directly into the break or

wave. Do it just as the wave hits the surfboards nose. Grab the rails close

to your chest, then push up and rise up to the knees or the toes. Hold your

weight using the upper body instead of transferring it into the legs. When

doing so, keep the board as horizontal as possible. When the wave has

passed half way down, lower the chest and straight away before resuming

paddling and starting to gain a forward momentum. Prepare for the waves

that would follow.

Busting through

This is another skill in paddling. It is used when there is a green wave that

peaks and is about to break. To do so, paddle directly up to the face of the

break or wave. Instead of pushing up, as done on the previous skill, keep

your chest on the surfboard deck, then hold on tightly with the elbows up.

As much as possible, keep your head comfortably tucked in as you look

down and then bust through the waves top.
The technique helps you emerge out of the waves back. However, you may

be taken right to the most critical parts of the wave. Start to paddle as

quickly as possible after busting through. If not, the wave will suck you

right back into itself as it starts breaking. This skill is very crucial so

practice it well if you really want to use this paddling technique.

Eskimo roll

On much bigger waves, you find that pushing up and busting through is not

appropriate. In such instances, you should roll the board over to attempt

piercing through to the waves bottom. The technique is special and

requires more effort as well as confidence. This special paddling technique

is best using a properly sized beginners surfboard. It also facilitates the

best chance to progress through broken waves.

It is imperative that you practice this paddling technique on a beach first

before you decide to attempt to do it in actual surf. Paddle as hard as you

can, directly towards any broken wave just before that wave hits the

surfboard nose and grab the rails. This time, make sure it is slightly higher

than your chest line or just about as high as your shoulder. Then, roll the

surfboard over to hold it tightly as close to the chest as possible.
As much as possible, when doing the Eskimo roll, keep the surfboard in a

horizontal position. The wave will pass over the surfboard top. You then come to

the surface out the back of the wave. Do not flip the board over. Instead, climb

as quickly as you can before you continue paddling. The paddling technique

requires you to use more of your upper body strength so your body should be

close to the surfboard.

                                 How to Angle

How to Angle

Angling the surfboard is very important as it is a major skill that helps

surfers make turns while they are surfing a wave. Surfers should always

attempt to achieve angles of the surfboard that are ideal for making it

through. They should always face straight towards the beach to angle and

cut across the wave.

You should learn to identify and catch a good wave, pack it down firmly and

nicely, and put your surfboard on top of it. Step on the board and lead it

using your back foot. Then trim the surfboard and hold it to the correct

surfing stance with the board ideally balanced on the wave.
How to angle the surfboard initially? To begin the task you should start

trimming (controlling) the board. To be able to speed it up, you should

push your hips forward while you stand on the board to place more weight

to your front leg. To be able to slow it down, just move your hips to your

back and put more weight into the back leg. Always remember that surfing

style is important that you keep your head up all the time. Your eyes

should look forward, your back should be straight, and your knees should

be bent properly.

Changing the angle of the surfboard

Changing the angle of the surfboard is just as important. It is needed to

properly steer and control the board while you ride on a wave. To

effectively change the angle of the board, you need to link your lower and

upper body so that they firmly connect with the surfboard.

As you trim (control) the surfboard, there is a need to shift your body

weight to your back leg. Use the arms to rotate your upper body. At the

same time, you need to shove your hip to the front across one direction.

This way, you bring the surfboard along with your body and change the

angle the board is facing. Take note that the front side for any natural foot
surfer would be to the right side. The goofy foot surfer is on the left.

More about angle

The surfboard angle should shift approximately to about 10 to 45 degrees.

You should instantly shift your body weight after shifting angle to the front

leg to be able to accelerate the surfboard. This way, you also make sure

you continue surfing the wave. Now, you should be cutting across the wave

in an entirely new direction. Take note that as you use greater power and

rotation, your body provides more responsive changes of angles from the


It would be significant to establish a link between the upper and lower body

portions so you are able to complete a successful and total change in angle.

If you rotate only your upper body, the board just continues going in a

straight line. You also are more likely to twist yourself off the board. In the

same way, if you only shove your hips, the surfboard continues to move

straight because the rotation at the upper body is also necessary as it is a

prime or leading factor in angling.

Learn more
Needless to say, angling is a very important skill in surfing. There is truth to

assertions that angling can make or break any surfer. There are just too

many things to learn and practice when surfing. Angling is just one of

those. You will not learn it easily. Usually, it takes weeks or months for a

beginner to completely understand and learn about the peculiar skill.

Surfers who are not serious will find themselves having a hard time relating

to angling and using it purposely when enjoying the extreme sport.

It is important to learn angling from the experts. It would be very hard, if not

impossible to learn how to angle on your own. If you are enrolled in professional

training sessions for surfing, you will encounter and learn more about the

technique. If not, you need to take time surfing with the experts and practicing

humility in knowing more about their craft. Open your eyes and condition

yourself to learn how to angle.

                           Catching the Right Wave

Catching the Right Wave

Catching a wave and riding it without breaking your face is a truly

challenging, amazing, and thrilling experience. It is very difficult as it

requires specific skills to be mastered, especially for beginners. Even
professional surfers may sometimes find it hard to catch not just any wave

but the right wave. Doing so involves combinations of ocean experiences

as well as feel, balance, timing, and plain paddling strength.

When you start making your way out of the breakers (waves that break on

the shore), you need to take a moment to comfortably observe where you

are lining up. The lineup refers to the surfers line while waiting for the

coming of a right wave. It could also be called the takeoff zone or the peak.

Take note that beach-breaks (waves breaking on sandy sea beds) could

possibly take several peaks.

There is one piece of advice you should remember while surfing. Do not

paddle into the middle of any group of experienced surfers. Such a practice

is absurd and is unacceptable when it comes to surfing.

Be sure you read the chapter that covers etiquette. It would be polite and

wise to just stay away from any group of surfers. Observe this tip

especially if you are still learning or mastering surfing and catching the

right waves. Moreover, experienced surfers would not mind beginners if

they are not acting like idiots and total nuisances.

Preparing to catch the right wave
Before you go on, there is a need to assess the entire situation. Aim to sit

outside an appropriate peak or wave. To do so, sit up on the board then

point yourself out to the sea. Take note of the manner by which waves

come in lulls and sets as well as how steep they could come where you are

sitting. You need to learn the oceans rhythm.

The ocean takes a different rhythm each day so be patient and be concise.

It’s a good idea to take several moments assessing the mood of the sea

before going full blast. Take note that assessing the sea could be different

from taking a perspective while on the shore. In other words, to test the

waters, get to it but do not go far from the shore yet. At the same time,

you could loom around to enjoy the natural beauty of the surroundings.

Doing so is one of the basic rewards of surfing.

The best place to sit depends on the total length of surfboard you are using.

If you are using a longboard, you should sit further outside because

longboards are easier to paddle when there is speed. In a shortboard, you

need to sit at least a meter or two outside where waves are actually

breaking. As you gain more experience, you easily and instinctively know

where to sit.
Catching the wave

As waves rush to approach the shore, notice that they gradually tend to be

steeper and steeper until they exhibit critical depth. As a wave reaches

shallow sandbars or reefs, its bottom could be abruptly slowed down and

the top or crest could continue going at the previous speed. This would

practically cause the wave to crash. This is the reason why there are

noticeably different sizes and shapes of waves.

You should aim to catch a right wave when it comes steeply enough so that

you would be able to push along. The wave should be caught moments

before it breaks. Paddle for waves too early and you see that it will just roll

right beneath you. On the other hand, if you paddle too late, you get

sucked up to your face and you just fall. It would be helpful if someone

would help you push right into the waves. You could ask an experienced

friend to kindly show you how to perfectly catch the right wave.

Catching the right wave could be more of a trial and error. Practice will help

make catching waves perfect. You need to do ample research and rehearse basic

movements while doing so.
Ask professional surfers for tips and insights on how to effectively catch the right

wave. It isn’t as hard as you think, but it could be really challenging to master it.

                     Review of Top Board Manufacturers

Review of Top Board Manufacturers

If you are planning to try out surfing the waves, you should submit to the

fact that you need to invest in a good and appropriate surfboard.

We have discussed the different types of boards previously. Now it’s time

to get down to the “nitty gritty” about the various suppliers.

You should not buy a board just for the sake of buying it. It is important

that you buy the surfboard that is best for you. A good surfboard for one

person might not be ideal for another because there is variation in physical

size and level of surfing skills.

Needless to say, there are just too many kinds of surfboards that are

currently available on the market. You should remember that not all boards

are appropriate for your level of surfing. There are recommended types of

boards for beginners just as there are surfboards that are ideal for highly
skilled surfers and experts. Before you head to any sports retailer to find

and buy the right surfboard for you, it should be noted that design and

construction of the items could vary.

Yes, we covered this previously but getting the right board will either make

or break your experience surfing. You need to get it right the first time!

It also helps if you know about popular and reliable brands. As mentioned,

there are just too many manufacturers and designers of surfboards. Most

of the time, you would be challenged in deciding which product from what

brand to patronize.

To serve as your easy guide, here is a simple and brief review of top

surfboard manufacturers in the world. Take note that the companies are

located at various parts of the world, usually in areas where surfing is very

popular as a form of extreme sports or a recreational activity.

Beachbeat Surfboards UK. This is a surfboard shaper with headquarters

right at the heart of Cornwall. The manufacturer is best known for several

of its unique models and popular surf designs. Buyers are usually

mesmerized by the product line.
Celtic Connections Surfboards. This maker of boards for surfing is best

known for designing and manufacturing customized longboards and

shortboards. The name is also known for being a good shaper.

Clark Foam. When it comes to foaming of surfboards, Clark Foam could

rightfully make its claim. The company is popular for making high quality

surfboards with ideal strength-to-weight ratio. The company is based in

San Diego in California, one of the popular spots for surfing in the world.

Driftwood Surfboards. The Driftwood name in surfboards was established

in 1912. It started from making boards out of woods derived from

shipwrecks. These days, Driftwood is known for making classic longboards

that are ideal for surfing in Cocoa Beach, Florida area.

Fins Unlimited. Are you looking for ideal and very useful fins? All other

surfboard accessories could be found in this line of surfboard products. Fins

and all other products and accessories coming from the brand feature a

variety of construction materials, shapes, sizes, and of course, colors.

Force Surfboards. The company is known for hand-shaping customized

surfboards. The firm also manufactures paddleboards.
FurCat. The manufacturer makes custom designed surfboards that feature

compression. The products are usually laminated by epoxy sandwich

process. Among the best surfboards, according to experts, are carrying the

FurCat name.

Hammer Surfboards. The company is known as a good and credible

manufacturer of surfboards and kiteboards.

HaydenShapes Surfboards. Australia is one of the countries that are

popular for facilitating surfing. Thus, it is not surprising that many

Australian surfboard manufacturers are emerging. This company is one of

those. This Australian shaper specializes in customizing shortboards as

well as fish designs.

Hermosa Surfboards. This manufacturer is known for making hand-shaped

longboards that could be considered as hybrids. The boards usually come

complete with airbrush as well as removable fins.

Injoy. The brand is popular as a manufacturer not just of surfboard but also

of necessary and ideal apparel related to the activity.

Jackson Surfboards. This is an Australian maker and retailer of customized
surfboards. Whatever kind of board you need, you could turn to the

company for help. Jackson Surfboards is an authority.

Morey Bodyboards. If you are into bodyboarding or bodysurfing, Morey

Bodyboards is surely for you. Aside from designing and producing a great

variety of bodyboards, the company is also known for organizing team

events as well as contests.

Teas Surfboards. The company also manufactures and designs custom-made

longboards, sailboards, and bodyboards. The manufacturer uses a composite

core technology.

                          Where Should You Surf?

Where Should Your Surf?

Modern surfing began at the onset of the 20th century when Hawaiians

who inhabited the area near Waikiki started reviving surfing. They

eventually re-established the activity as a form of leisure sport. Through

the years, surfing has gained worldwide exposure. It has become

synonymous to extreme beach fun.
From Hawaii, it is very obvious that surfing as a habit has spread like

wildfire. Now, almost all around the world, surfing is a very popular activity

especially to extreme sports enthusiasts. It is not surprising that surfers

from all around the globe are agreeing in unanimity that not all the best

surfing sites in the planet are in Hawaii. Many of the best places to surf are

now in other parts of the world.

Thus, many surfers have the basic question of where to surf. Experts do

not recommend specific places to go surfing, but they advise enthusiasts to

know more about waves and find the best surfing spots for themselves.

The best surfing sites according to wave type

It is important to identify the three basic types of waves so you could

determine where to find the best surfing sites in the world. Waves could be

beach break, the point break, and the reef break. To begin with, beach

breaks are waves that break right on the sandy seabed. These waves are

best for beginners. Hossegor in Southern France is the best place to enjoy

surfing at such type of waves. These breaks could hold perfect barrels for

up to 20 feet high.

Point break is a type of wave that easily breaks into a rocky point. The most
ideal place to surf at such a wave is at Bells Beach, Australia. Reef Break is

a kind of wave that breaks, as the name implies, over a rock seabed or a

coral reef. Reef breaks are usually the waves that people see on surfing

videos. Such waves could be truly unforgiving but are certainly very good

to look at. They could be very risky for beginners and non-professional

surfers. Cloudbreak in Fiji is known for its reef breaks.

Other specific popular sites for surfing

As mentioned, there are many ideal and best surfing sites that could be

found all over the world. You might be surprised that there are good surfing

places at almost every continent in the planet. It means that enthusiasts

are all going where the waves could take them. Surfing could be best in

oceans or seas where there are great waves produced by different natural


Here are some of the most popular surfing sites in the world. Take note

that almost all surfing sites are featuring their respective specific

characteristics and enticements.

Northern Ireland. Surfing has reached this European tourism destination.

Portrush is the main surfing site in the country. It is rich in waves, both at
the East and West Strands. The area is a well developed and well known

surfing spot where there are numerous surf schools and shops.

Gold Coast City, Queensland, Australia. The continent is now noted for

having excellent surfing conditions all year round. There are four main

breaks and there are always sunny skies. Find out why the city is ideally

called the Surfers Paradise. Aside from surfing, vacationers could also

enjoy shopping and visiting other tourism attractions.

Jeffereys Bay, South Africa. The place is very popular because of the yearly

Billabong Pro World Champion Tour at the Supertubes Beach . Thus, the

bay has been made very famous all over the world due to great surfing

events and at the same time great fun.

Mundaka, Spain. The site is one of the most notable surfing spots in the

European continent and in the world. The place offers waves in speed and

sizes that all surfers are looking for. To add to the excitement, the current

is also strong. The site, however, is only best for pro and experienced


Tavarua. Fiji. There are secret elements of Tavarua. There are two world class

breaks, breathtaking coral reefs, and picturesque sceneries. However, only
invited surfers are allowed access to this exclusive surfing site. The island is

regularly hosting different surfing events and competitions all year round. This

way, many surfing enthusiasts could see and appreciate the place online or via

the television.

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