Posted on August 30, 2019 by Doug Robichaud
If learning to surf at 30, 40, 50, 60, or well into the age of retirement is your goal, you've come to the right place. Just like there is no age limit for surfing, there is no age limit for learning how to surf. It’s never too late to start! Regardless of your age, learning how to surf can be achieved with enough time and determination.
With realistic expectations, surfing can provide you physical and mental rewards that will keep you coming back for more. Below are four key tips for those learning to surf at 30 and beyond. These four important beginner tips will help you discover what it takes to become a surfer.
Before you even think of grabbing a surfboard and heading to the beach, you need to be (or become) a confident swimmer in the ocean. The ocean is a powerful and complicated force of nature that is not one to be reckoned with. Ocean conditions can change at the blink of an eye, surfing requires you to be prepared to handle yourself and your surfboard when the waves get unexpectedly rough.
You can become a strong ocean swimmer by simply practicing freestyle, breaststroke, and butterfly strokes in the ocean when the swell is minimal. You can also practice your swimming in a bay, pool, or lake. The more confident you’re with swimming, the more confident you will be out in the ocean surfing.
Catching waves makes surfing a physically demanding water sport, which means you need to be in peak physical shape to surf effectively. Surfing is a full-body workout, meaning it demands the use of every core muscle in your body. You need to ensure you have the cardio fitness and a good base of strength before you even think about paddling out.
If you believe you’re in poor physical shape, start going on short runs for cardio and do sets of push-ups for muscle strengthening. Aside from cardio and strengthening, it’s important to start stretching every day (if you aren’t already) to avoid injury and muscle cramps. Consider this rule of thumb: the older you become, the more you should stretch before you do any physical activity. A great alternative to stretching would be to practice yoga.
Now that you’re physically prepped to go surfing, I highly recommend that you book a beginner surf lesson at your local surf shop or surf school. If you have a close friend who's an experienced surfer, you can also set up a time to have them teach you how to surf. It’s important to take surf lessons from an experienced surfer or instructor before you try surfing by yourself. Going surfing by yourself with no proper experience or knowledge can be dangerous.
Taking lessons will not only teach you proper beginner techniques and surf etiquette out in the lineup but will also be an extra set of eyes in case something happens. Furthermore, a lesson is also great because the teachers will take you to a spot with a beginner level wave where you can learn how to start surfing small waves that are perfect for beginners.
Choosing the right surfboard for beginners is an important decision no matter how young or old you are. You don’t want to end up with a surfboard that is too small for your skill or fitness levels because it will be super hard to ride. The best boards for beginner surfers, ages 30 and up, are funboards and longboards.
Longer, thicker, and wider surfboards are essential for learning how to surf at 30 and beyond. Bigger surfboards, like funboards and longboards, will make riding waves and perfecting your surfing stance easier for you. Whatever you do, please avoid getting a shortboard because they will be too small for your skill level.
Regardless of your age, it’s never too late to start surfing. Follow these four tips to successfully learn how to surf at 30, 40, 50, or well into your retirement.
And once you follow these tips, you'll soon perfect the beginner basics and be well on your way to improving your surfing skills and riding the waves!
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