If you’ve paid your learner penance playing in the white water water and you're now ready to progress to paddling outback and catching some green waves, then this could be a good read for you, its always a tricky subject so let’s tackle it! A surf lineup can feel intimidating, especially whilst learning, but knowing and understanding a few unwritten rules of surfing can help to build confidence, so you can respect other surfers, avoid accidents and progress and enjoy your surfing:
🌊 Always properly assess and observe all the conditions, where the waves are breaking, any rips, paddling out positions, beach dangers and making sure you’ve got functional leash that can protect yourself and other surfers.
🌊When paddling out, try to avoid blocking a surfers line who might be on a wave, instead paddle wide towards the white water and then paddle round to the lineup.
🌊In a wave hungry line up and the adrenalin or maybe frustration kicks in, take a deep breath and wait your turn, your time and your wave will come.
🌊Always share the waves, don’t repeatedly paddle round someone to get into the inside position.
🌊Observe who has the right of way, the closest surfer to the peak of the breaking wave has priority, if you ‘drop-in’ on another surfer by mistake, pull off and try not to hinder them whilst they’re up and surfing. Also worth a little polite wave to acknowledge the accident.
🌊On busy days accidents can happen, avoid this by trying not to abandon or ditch your board as it can become a real danger to others in the water.
🌊Respect and communicate with the lineup heroes, they aren’t really the local surf mafia, they’re just super keen and excited for their next wave at their home beach, learn from their experience and knowledge, listen to them or the occasional ‘Watch out’ and don’t forget they were beginners once too!
🌊Ask around, if new to the break and unsure where to paddle out or not to paddle out, ask a local, they’re usually happy to give you some basic information . Don’t expect to get all the secrets and best spots and times, but by giving you some pointers it’s helping everyone out.
🌊Only surf spots that suit your ability, there’s always a time and a beach to push you out of your comfort zone, think carefully, if ever in doubt, don't paddle out!
See you in the lineup and have fun!