6 Important Tips Every Surfer Needs To Know
Surfing is one of the most popular sports in the world. It offers a great challenge and even greater rewards when you successfully ride a wave. It can be really fun when you have the right information.
It’s also one of more dangerous, with surfers constantly at risk of drowning or being injured by riptides and sharks. But there are some simple things every surfer can do to stay safe. Here are six important tips every surfer should know:
Never Surf Alone
This is important in general but it is absolutely essential when you are in shark territory. If there’s no one you’d like to go with, just don’t go or better still don’t go too far. The risk of being the only person in the water is just not worth it. In addition, it’s not safe to surf alone.
In case of emergency, make sure there is someone who can go for help, or at least try to get a cell phone signal if you have one. Even in safe areas, many surfers carry personal safety devices designed to signal the presence of sharks and send lifeguards their location so they can come and save them.
Having a surfing partner. That may sound like common sense but you would be surprised at how many people do not take this simple precaution. You both should use proper surfing gear. Look for where you can see js surfboards for sale or other recommended boards. Your safety is important which is why you should not surf alone. Also, as much as possible, avoid surfing with people who are inexperienced because they can slow you down and cause problems for both of you.
Learn Basic First Aid
Being a surfer requires a lot of time in the water. If you spend enough time surfing, accidents will happen, and knowing what to do when they happen can make a big difference. That’s why it’s necessary you take some basic first aid training.
Also, look out for each other while surfing. Keep your eyes peeled for sharks and riptides, don’t go too far away from shore or push yourself beyond your limits, always swim with someone else if the conditions allow it, etc.
Don’t Surf Under The Influence of Alcohol or Drugs
This is an obvious one. Not only can you get yourself in trouble, but you could also harm someone else if your coordination is off after drinking or using drugs. You may seem invincible on land but not on the ocean where even a small accident can cause serious injury.
Always be aware of your limits and avoid any activity that may put your life in danger. Also, never swim or surf if you are tired or injured. This is when accidents are most likely to happen, so make sure you are in top physical shape before going out on the water. Stay safe and do not drink alcohol while surfing.
Stay Away from Riptides
According to the NOAA, about 80% of all surfers have been caught in riptides at least once. So it’s very important you learn what they are and how to spot one. They occur when fast-moving water and high waves push towards the shore and form a current that can pull swimmers out to sea.
When this happens, don’t panic and swim against the current because you will only get tired. Instead, swim parallel towards the beach until you break free from its grip or reach shallow waters where you can stand up safely. Surviving a riptide is not difficult but it does require basic knowledge on rip currents that every surfer should know.
Surf In Your Comfort Zones
While it’s good to test your limits every now and then, do not push yourself too hard or take unnecessary risks that can put you in danger. If you are not sure about something, better avoid it and stay safe.
Also, if you are surfing in unfamiliar waters, make sure to ask locals what you should be careful of before hitting the water. They will definitely appreciate the gesture and will guarantee your safety while surfing along their beach.
Know what kind of waves are breaking in the area you are surfing in. Also, note the location of rips and strong currents so you avoid them at all costs.
Wear Waterproof Sunblock
Just because you are in the water, does not mean that you are safe from the sun. The reflection of light off the surface of the water can make you more vulnerable to sunburns even if you are deep underwater. There are special waterproof sunblock formulas designed for surfers or any watersports enthusiast that can provide ample protection against harmful UV rays.
Fortunately, knowledge is power and with all this new information, there’s no excuse for putting your life on the line when lessons learned quickly will keep you alive and surfing another day.