2016 is fast approaching! Whether you are ready for it or not, change is happening. Why not point it in the right direction with a goal or intention to improve your surfing in the New Year? If you need some guidance, here are a few great ideas to help you upgrade your shredding:
Surf more. Surfing is just like anything else. The more you do it, the better you will be at it. Set a goal to at least surf once, twice, or three times per week. Obviously sometimes there won’t be waves, and there is not much you can do about that. At least check the surf every day! Surfing more will not only make you a better surfer, but it will put you in better physical shape, and you will be happier. Who doesn’t want that?
Book that trip. Do it! There is nothing like one-three weeks of surfing quality waves to launch your skill to the next level. Check swell patterns and weather conditions to choose the best place for the time of year that you plan to travel. Surf camps are a great idea for any level of surfer traveling for the purpose of catching as many waves as possible and improving skills. The best way to commit to taking a trip is to just buy a plane ticket. Everything seems to work itself out after that. Make it happen in 2016!
Learn that new skill. Do you want to get barreled? Land airs? Do cutbacks? Duck dive? Turtle roll? Commit to learning at least one new surfing skill and then practice it each time you go surfing until it happens. You can look up some tutorials online or talk to some more experienced surfers for advice. If there is a will there is a way. Nothing is out of your surfing reach, it just takes patience and perseverance.
Check in with your ‘tude. This is important. Surfing is supposed to be fun. Do you feel stressed out in the line up? Are you a wave hog? Do you beat yourself up when you are not surfing like you want to? If so, it is time for a new attitude in the New Year. Find that stoke that got you surfing and add it back into your life. Give someone a wave. Smile at people in the lineup. Cheer people on. Refresh yourself on surfing etiquette. Go with the flow. Let surfing be your teacher and let go of some control out there. Be honest with yourself and check yo’self before you wreck yo’self.
Stretch. Surfing is an extreme physical sport, so your surfing will improve if you take care of your body. There are a lot of ways to do this, but one of them is to stretch those surfing muscles. Maybe dedicate ten minutes before and after surfing to doing some leg and arm stretches, or take up yoga. Yoga is one of those hobbies that will improve your life overall, especially your surfing. When you become more flexible in your body, you will be amazed at how your surfing will improve, and you will be far less prone to injury.
Teach someone to surf. We all have those people in our lives that make us think “Dude, they need surfing.” So spread the stoke! You know how surfing has improved your life, so why not pay it forward? It’s just good karma.
Do your part for the ocean. Surfers know first-hand that there is nothing worse that paddling into a pile of trash. Do your part by keeping our oceans clean. Think of it as cleaning your home. Lots of towns already have organized beach clean ups in place that you can join, and if there is not already one in place, organize one yourself. If organization is not your thing, just commit to going to the beach once a month and picking up as much trash as you can. Take advantage of those flat days to make a difference.
Wake up early. Tidal conditions aside, dawn patrol is usually the best time to surf. There is less wind, there are fewer people in the lineup, and for most of us, dawn is before work hours. Waking up early and doing something active is a great way to improve your overall health and lifestyle, not to mention your surfing. Set a resolution to do this at least once or twice per week, if not every day!
Try a different type of board. Do you always longboard? Do you always short board? Switch it up. You never know how a different board can change your experience or increase your level of fun. Find a surf shop and rent different boards for a few weeks. You don’t know what you could be missing. Step out of that comfort zone.
New Year’s resolutions are a great way to go into a new year with the intention to grow, change, and improve. You can set intentions and goals no matter what time of the year it is, and you can change your intention as many times as you like. You can set small manageable goals, or you can attack all nine of the aforementioned goals one by one throughout 2016 to completely launch your surfing to a new level. The wonderful thing about surfing is that you can always improve. Keep moving forward and you will be stoked for your entire life.
Have suggestions? We want to hear about your surfing resolutions for 2016. Feel free to comment below!