SURFING: It's all about technique, technique, technique.
SURFING: It's all about technique, technique, technique. CONTRIBUTED

Surfing: Five easy steps to get you started


ONLY a surfer truly understands the bliss of escaping into the ocean in search of the perfect wave.

It has become a culture many people would like to experience.

But there are so many skills needed to become a proficient surfer: firstly paddling, then duck diving and, once these skills are slowly nurtured, you're ready to develop your technique.

The following procedure is one of the most commonly used techniques for teaching surfing to a novice.

By breaking it down into methodical steps, the novice learns balance skills and slows down the process, as rushing any new skill is not ideal.

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FIRSTLY, before any of the fun stuff can be taught, the staff at XL explain to beginner surfers the correct way to fall.

1. Falling off is inevitable. Falling off using a safe method is taught. With arms and legs out making a "star fish" is the position to aim for when falling off.

We do this so we don't hit the bottom, as the sand is compacted and as hard as concrete and it could be shallow.

The starfish position prevents the surfer from penetrating deep, allowing the water to cushion the fall.

2. Don't jump off feet first in the shallows. This is the second key to safety, as the ocean floor can be uneven and full of potholes.

Jumping off at speed is an easy way to twist an ankle or hurt yourself more seriously.

The correct method to disembark from the surfboard is to wait until it has slowed down and step off. Or simply lie back down on the board.


THE best approach is for beginner surfers to lie on their board, ready in the correct prone position facing the beach. Start paddling while the white-water wave is still. Once you have paddled and caught the wave, you are ready to stand up and ride it.

Step 1


SURFING: It's all about technique, technique, technique.


PLACE hands flat beside the bottom of your rib cage with your fingertips just over the rails, then push up into a "woman's push-up", keeping the weight over your shoulders.

Make sure your chin is up.

Step 2


Learning to surf technique: photo2.

BRING your knee forward, placing it between your belly button and your chest.

You should feel a stretch in your thigh if your position is correct.

Make sure that your shoulders are facing straight and your knee is in the middle of the board (not to the side).

Step 3


Learning to surf technique: photo3.

ALLOW the weight to go forward over your knee, letting you bring your other leg around under your chin and landing your front foot in a 45-degree position in front of the knee.

Shift your weight on to the front foot and continue to look forward at all times.

Don't sit back on your back leg (as shown).

Step 4


Learning to surf technique: photo4.

OK! Now allow the body to twist into a squat.

Position yourself, keeping both feet flat on the board and fingertips touching the board for stability, making sure your head stays up and looking forward and is centred over the board.

Step 5


Learning to surf technique: photo5.

YOU are now ready to stand upright and take your hands and imitate a position as if shooting a bow and arrow. Then slowly squeeze the legs slightly together as you come up, keeping your knees bent, as they are your suspension.

Keep your eyes and chin up and centred the whole time.


OUR XL Surfing Academy Surf Guide continues tomorrow.