Posts Tagged ‘critical’

Surfing Etiquette

During the 1990’s the Isle of Wight Surf Club posted a Suring Etiquette cartoon page in their monthly newsletter. As you can tell from the cartoons there was a rivalry between Surfers and Surf Skiers/Kayakers (or affectionately called Goat Boats by surfers) at the time and it is clearly aimed at them. It is quite a comical take on surfing etiquette but some of it is still relevant today.

The cartoon rules were the brainchild of South African artist and surfer Phil Smuts. They were re-drawn here by IOW Surf Club member Carl Dubois.

1. Don’t Drop In

The surfer closest to the breaking part of the wave has the right of way. Always check your inside. To see you didn’t see anyone is inexcusable. This practice is highly dangerous on critical waves.

2. Don’t Hog Waves

With your greater paddling power you’re able to get far more waves than other surfers. Learn to share the waves and give a few. You will get more respect that way.

3. Maintain Control

Never attempt a manoeuvre when failure will cause you to collide with someone. Uncontrolled manoeuvres impress no one. 360s are dangerous in crowded situations. Use a fin at all times as well as seat belts and if inexperienced, a paddle cord

4. Don’t Paddle Out Thru Break

Go around, it’s safe and won’t spoil someones ride.

5. Be Polite

Trading insults and derogatory remarks only creates unnecessary incidents. Keep your cool and be nice.

6. Don’t Endanger Others

Often when you want to take off someone willbe paddling out and be in your way. Alternatively you can see a critical section ahead where, if you wipe-out you will land on top of someone. YOU MUST NOT PROCEED. Let that wave go and wait for another.

7. Share The Sea

If you want to lose the tag ‘Boatman’ you’ll have to play the game according to surfers’ rules. They were there first, so learn to give more than you get. Organised competitions will allow your ability to grow and you’ll learn to share the waves. Join your local club.

On a more serious note Surfing Etiquette signs are going up at Surf beaches all around the world. With surf equipment from body boards to SUP’s becoming cheaper and more accessible and surfing becoming increasingly popular safety and common sense in the water is starting to become an issue.


The Perfect Day

It was a day when you surfed until you just couldn’t surf anymore and your arms were like jelly. You would come up to the car park and grab something to eat and drink and talk about your waves until you couldn’t watch the swell rolling in anymore and go in again. It never seemed busy, only about 15 people in the line up at any one time but people surfed all day and into the night. Keith Williams as I remember was one of the guys who surfed all day on his Chapter Longboard and was catching wave after wave right from outside the wreck right upto the beach where there used to be a couple of lumps of concrete just under the waters edge at high tide. Steve Williams also stood out and seemed a master a riding Compton. Ray Hutchings was doing amazing cutbacks and just knew exactly where to put his board staying right in the critical part of the wave. Clive Richardson togot his fair share of waves too, going left or right seeming to always pick a perfect wall. Jason Matthews was about my age and started surfing at the same time as me, but was a much better surfer than me. Jason was a goofy foot and would smash the lip on his back hand through the inside at Compton.