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AGE REQUIREMENTS FOR SURFING

Surfing Details

 

AGE GROUP BOYS AND GIRLS AGE 9 AND OVER 

If you ask a surfer why they love to surf you will hear a variety of answers anywhere from "It's fun" to "Surfing is my life" but the reality is that there is nothing else like it.  Surfing is purely natural and it utilizes the power of the environment.  The warm air, lush coastline, clear water and the rush of gliding atop a wave make surfing a terrific adventure.  Ask any surfer and he/she will tell you that the thrill and excitement they get from riding waves are just the same as any other eXtreme sport.  Surfing has become so popular that it now represents a multi-billion dollar industry. Whether it is your career or a hobby the truth is "A bad day in the water is better than a good day at work or school!"

Prerequisites to surfing…

Surfing is a lot of fun, but it can also be very dangerous.  Before stepping into the water with a surfboard it is imperative that you can swim! The current and waves can be very strong, so it's very important you are a strong swimmer before you start learning how to surf.  Failing to know how to swim cannot only jeopardize your life but others as well.

Swimming is terrific preparation for surfing. It will exercise many of the muscles you will use to paddle your surfboard.  In addition, swimming improves aerobic fitness, and it will increase water confidence.

Skateboarding is also a great way to train for surfing.  It will help with balance, agility and overall physical fitness.

What is the best age to start surfing?

Surfing  may look easy but the reality of it is it is actually one of the toughest sports to conquer.  Since this sport obviously requires a lot of patience it is important that your child be at least the age of nine or ten before beginning to surf. Children at this age will have the patience and strength necessary for this sport as well as the swimming skills.  Remember they need to be able to carry their surfboard and paddle out. 

If you decide to start your child on surfing younger, four years old is a good age, then you should be the one teaching them, and only after many years of experience. It is important to start on a softboard and that you enter the water with your child. 

Ingredients for a happy surfer...

  • Body surfing is also a great pre-surfing activity for young children to help them become comfortable with the surfboard. 
     

  • Make sure you start them on a day when the waves are small and take care with wipeouts to ensure that they do not become fearful.
     

  • Encourage them to surf with friends of similar age and start in the summer when they have plenty of time to practice. 
     

  • Don't go to beaches where the tide is too strong, and always go surfing where there are lifeguards.
     

  • Most importantly remember always that this should be fun for your child!!!   

SURF LESSONS

Surfing Lessons…

Surf lessons are available in many countries through surf shops or independent companies.  Simply check for advertisements in surfing magazines, local newspapers, or the telephone directory. If all else fails check the Internet for the surfing association of the country and contact them.

Lessons will teach you water safety as well as surfing techniques. Classes vary from intro classes to specialty classes like mastering the stand.  Like any other sport surfing takes practice, the more you surf the better you'll get.

You can either take group lessons or private lessons.  Lessons can be one, two or three hours.  It will cost approximately $55 or $60 per hour for group lessons and $80 - $90 per hour for private lessons.  Some places offer a multi-class package.  Group Lessons are usually suggested for the average beginner. Private lessons are better for children under 10 years old and for more experienced surfers.

EQUIPMENT
 

 

Equipment Needed for Surfing?

As a beginner, you need a long, thick, wide board. The objective is to get something that will easily allow you to catch waves and be stable and forgiving when you are learning to stand. Your board should be at least one foot longer than you are tall.

Take the time to shop around and talk to the experts at local surf shops.   .

A used board is generally your best bet when starting out. Chances are good that you're going to ding it up just carrying it around

In addition to your board you're going to need some wax, a leash, and something to wear. Most of these can be found at your friendly neighborhood surf shop. If you can afford it you should purchase a wetsuit.

See our section on surfboards, wetsuits and leashes for detailed information.

GENERAL INFORMATION
 

Surfing Rules

Surfing tends to be pretty free form but there are certain accepted rules, mostly based on safety and common sense.

The drop-in rule is the unwritten rule that governs who has the right to ride any given wave. The unwritten law that gives rise to the drop-in rule is "One wave, one person" - in other words there should never be more than one person taking off on any wave. Basically, the person taking off closest to the breaking part of the wave has the right to the wave.  If someone else is already riding the wave, don't try and catch it yourself.  Never drop in on a wave in front of someone who is already up and riding.  When paddling out, if you must get over a wave that someone is riding, paddle behind them, never paddle in front of them.

WEBSITES

Popular Surfing Websites

Surfline - Surfline is the leading provider of surf reports, surf webcams, surf forecasts, surfing news, surfing videos, surfing photos and surf travel information.
 
WannaSurf - Free illustrated atlas of surf spots and surfing worldwide with maps of surf spots, detailed descriptions and photos.

Quiksilver  - maker of surfboards, clothing, and related accessories.

O'Neill - wetsuits and activewear for surfing, diving, waterskiing, wakeboarding, and windsurfing.

Oceanic - full listing of our product selection guide packed with product information, dealer listings and much more.

Jet Pilot - offers wetsuits, life vests, and extreme sports apparel for wakeboarding, surfing, motocross, and PWC.

Realm, The - brand of surf-specific apparel.

Roxy - wetsuits, swimwear, and accessories for young women and girls. A Quiksilver brand.

Gotcha - surf inspired sportswear and accessories.

Toes on the Nose - offers Longboarders classic surf clothing for men, women, and children.

Maui and Sons - internationally licensed apparel and sporting goods, surfwear and sportswear

SurfWearHawaii.com - surf and beach clothing, wetsuits, board shorts, caps and surf stickers directly from the soul of surf, the Hawaiian Islands.

Surf Wear and More at Ron Jon Surf Shop
Online store with surf gear, apparel, accessories, home decor & more.

Surfboards Designed for Women
Manufacturer of boards designed specifically for women.

Surfrider Foundation
Non-profit organization to protect oceans and beaches.