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Beginner’s Guide to Learn How To Surf [4 Important Tips]

Learning how to surf is all about practice. Sure, you'll learn faster with a coach, but you can still do it by yourself or rely on a friend for some helpful tips. There are plenty of surfing for dummies PDF books as well, but the truth is nothing compares to the actual experience. No matter how many books you read, you'll still have to apply your knowledge on a board to gain experience.

In this article, we will be providing you with some helpful tips that will work wonders in the long run. After all, it's much easier to know some secrets upfront than discovering them yourself the hard way.

1) Get a Long Surfboard

how to surf for beginners

Although it's not too cool and sexy, a long surfboard will improve your first time surfing experience. This is the most important tips in the beginning. 

Lots of people think surfing is easy, so they would rather start with a short model. They imagine they'll try harder and push themselves – not going to happen! A large board will help you understand the basics of surfing, as well as the mechanics of surfboards. Plus, you will be able to catch more waves with a long board in the beginning.

2) Opt for a Soft Top

A soft top is imperative for newbies. You'll notice that most surfboards beginners come with soft tops. Why? Easy! You will spend more time sitting than standing. It's just part of the game.

Soft tops are for entry level surfers. They're comfortable and won't force you to stand up. Moreover, the soft surface will prevent injuries. It's perfectly normal to fall every few attempts – you certainly don't want to bang your head against a hard epoxy board, do you?

3) Sit and Watch

Once you get the board, don't rush into the water right away. Learning how to get good at surfing implies observing first. Do some stretching exercises and get ready for the workout. Make sure your leash is properly set. Watch the waves and their pattern on the respective day. Look at other surfers and figure out what they do in certain situations. Make observation a habit. You'll always keep learning, so never stop watching others.

4) Take Small Waves

No learn to surf for beginners guide will tell you this, but stick to small waves and dead spots in the beginning. Basically, you want steady and small waves. That's what makes the process easy. If they're large, you'll skip the basics and fall all the time. If they're not steady, you'll spend more time chasing them.

Sure, at some point, you'll feel ready to upgrade your spot. You're not! You know it's time to move on when you feel slightly bored of taking small steady waves.


Bottom line, learning how to surf for beginners is like any other activity. It takes time, practice and lots of failing. Figure what went wrong and work on it. Few books and guides might help, but trying this activity in person will provide better solutions than any book.

Related Article: Best Surfboards for Beginners

Douglas Keister

I am an adventure fanatic that loves nature and adventure sports like kayaking, camping and water sports. I have been doing this for almost 10 years now and have learned quite a few tricks. With my experience, I hope to provide you with the most reliable and accurate information for your next adventure.

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