You have heard the cliché “Rome was not built in a day” and this saying holds true in learning to surf as well. People often want to progress in surfing at a very rapid pace because we watch surf videos, contests, and people out in the water everyday that make it look easy. The fact is to become a better surfer you just have to go out and surf more. There is a school of thought out there that it takes 10,000 hours to truly master something. To put this into perspective 10,000 hours is a little over a year (1 year and 1 month to be exact) and this means that you would have to surf everyday all day for a year straight to “master” surfing. As enticing as quitting ones job and surfing 24 hours a day sounds it is not a realistic possibility. So the use of ones time becomes paramount when learning to surf as 10,000 hours can be a serious commitment. We all have obligations, duties, and unfortunately jobs to attend to during the course of the day. Surfing is seen as a leisure sport that some cannot devote the proper amount of time to master. However surfing can be some of your most well spent time as it is one of the best forms of exercise and stress relief. There is no magic formula to becoming a better surfer but below are some guidelines that will help you on your journey.
- Swim- Hands down one of the best ways to get into surfing shape. Swimming forces you to breathe methodically ensuring you will have better cardio when you paddle.
- Row- Getting on a rowing machine for 30 minutes a day will increase the strength of the muscles needed to paddle for surfing.
- Stretch- Flexibility is huge often times people don’t put in the work to loosen their bodies up. If your hips and legs are tight the motion of popping up on a surfboard will not come easy.
- Hydrate/Nutrition- The body is a machine and our goal is to turn it into a surfing machine. Drinking water instead of carbonated drinks will pay big dividends when surfing and cutting back on junk food gives you better stamina.
- Surf- Seems to simple to be true, but the best way to get better at surfing is to simply surf. It’s all about muscle memory the more we do something the more natural it feels. Our body is then programed to continually do an act that over time will be an unconscious reaction.
I am committed to these guidelines as they have made me a better surfer, but my goal is to incorporate them into your life so you will be a better surfer. We are all on the same path in the realm of surfing some of us a just a bit farther ahead on that path. However with time, dedication, and a willingness to become a better surfer that goal will eventually be realized.