8 things to know about surfing
Surfing is one of the most popular sports in the world, having grown massively in popularity after it was bought into the mainstream in the early 2000s. There are plenty of facts that you can find out about surfing, but there are a number of things that you should know about the sport that can help you when you’re a beginner.
Where you find a good wave, you will find crowds
One of the most off-putting aspects to surfing is having to battle the crowds in order to catch the best waves. However, it is an inevitable part of surfing: Wherever the best waves are, there will also be a crowd of surfers ready and waiting. You could ask a local surf school for some top tips for the best places to surf as a beginner, which might mean you avoid some of the bigger crowds where the more experienced surfers are.
Perfect waves are hard to find
Finding the perfect waves isn’t always as simple as it looks in the movies. There are a number of countries around the world that offer excellent surfing opportunities, but these will generally change at different times of the year.
Before trying to find the perfect wave, do your research about the destination you’re looking to go to, to ensure that you are always going to get the best chance of finding the perfect wave.
Ensure you have the right size of surfboard
Getting the right size surfboard for you is important, as this can have a big effect on your balance and how you surf. If you’re hiring your equipment, talk to a specialist in order to get the right board for you. The material of the board is also important, as some materials are more buoyant and therefore are better for beginners.
Buy the right equipment
If you are buying equipment, whether that’s your wetsuit or your surfboard, it is important you know exactly what you are buying. Discuss your best options to suit your budget and how often you are going to surf with the specialist in the shop.
If you’re simply looking to purchase a reliable wetsuit from a reputable company and hire the rest of your equipment, make sure that you get the right fit. A well fitting wetsuit will keep you warm and safe.
Highest tide in the world
The highest tides in the world are to be found in the Bay of Fundy in Canada. There is a huge difference between high and low tide – with the difference being around 16.3m. It is important that you know where the best surfing spots are so you’re not caught in low or high tides when catching waves.
First account of surfing
An interesting fact about the sport is that the first ever account of surfing was by Captain James Cook in 1778. He wrote: “I could not help concluding this man had the most supreme pleasure while he was driven so fast and so smoothly by the sea.” This was after he saw the sport in Hawaii.
The biggest wave ever recorded
The biggest wave ever recorded was a whopping 1738ft tall during a tsunami in Lituya Bay in southern Alaska back in 1958.
Beware of injuries
There are injuries and disease that can occur through excessive surfing, such as surfer’s ear (exostosis) and surfer’s eye (pterygium) due to the exposure to water. Other issues include lower back and shoulder pain, staph infections, lacerations, sprains and strains, fractures and dislocations.
Take care out there in the waves but, most of all, enjoy yourself!