Blow the cobwebs off that sun umbrella and hunt for the sunscreen, its time to take those “banting bodies” to the beach. In the last few weeks, I have noticed a growing number of new surf enthusiasts heading for our golden shores. If you are ready to take the plunge and suite up this summer….here are a few tips to get you riding in no time at all.
Choose the right equipment: A full length wetsuit is a must have accessory for Cape Town. Choose a surfboard that is long (8ft-9ft) and stable, preferably a foam board for atleast the first few sessions.
Head to a beginner surf spot: A sand bottom beach with a gentle slope and slow rolling wave is ideal. Muizenberg and Big Bay are both good places to start.
Check your surf stance: When practicing the pop up, you will take a sideways stance on the surfboard. Your power leg will be your back foot and the leash will be attached to this leg. You arms, shoulders, hips and feet will all be facing the same direction; your head will be looking toward the shoreline. Keep your arms out for balance and your knees bent.
Wiping out: Always fall flat onto the water and never dive off head or feet first. Remember to keep your head covered when wiping out.
Choose a good wave and keep paddling: Walk out to chest depth and choose a white water wave (foamie). Start paddling early, as the wave picks you up continue to take another 5 stokes and then pop to your feet!
Ask questions: Chat to your local surf school or to other surfers in the line up. The more questions you ask, the quicker you will learn.
Practice makes perfect: When back on land continue practicing your pop ups. The more you do the better you will be the next time you are in the surf.
And always remember, you don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.