How Hard Is It to Learn to Surf? It Is Hard …
Is surfing hard to learn and how can you make it easy on yourself?
Surfing is one of those watersports that looks so graceful, when you see other people doing it! What you don’t know is that the pros have many years of experience under their belt.
But you have to start somewhere, right?
Learning to surf never stops. Every time you get on the water, there is always something new to learn. The sooner you can start your lessons the better. In two hours, you will learn the basics of surfing but becoming a real pro can take even 10 years.
On a difficulty rating of 10 with ten being the hardest, we could say that surfing learning difficulty is 8 out of 10. Quite high!
However, how fast you can make progress depends on your determination. For instance, a person who practices surfing three or four times a week will learn faster than a person who practices five times a month.
How long does it take to learn to surf?
There is no specific time limit for learning how to surf. The best thing that you can do is to set certain milestones.
For instance, you can set a goal for learning to balance on a surfboard, learning how to catch a paddle out, stand on the surfboard, catch a wave and so on.
The first beginner surfing lesson should be 2 hours long
Surfing lessons begin on land. Usually, surfing instructors will take about 15 minutes to explain to you certain things about surfing.
A regular beginner surfer lesson should take two hours. Of these two hours, 15 minutes of the lesson are spent on land as the instructor explains a few things.
That leaves you with 1 hour and 45 minutes to practice on the water. Now, with that in mind, you can decide how many lessons you can take in a week.
Usually, two or three lessons should be enough, but some people even take up to four lessons a week. The more you practice, the better you will become at surfing.
Catching a wave vs reading a wave
If you ask any surfing instructor, they will tell you learning how to catch a wave is easy and it can take as few as two hours.
To catch a wave, you start by riding the surfboard on your belly, then on your knees and eventually, you learn how to stand up on the board.
After knowing how to stand up on the surfing board, learning how to balance on the board is the next step.
You cannot avoid falling into the water when you are learning how to surf. Just as when using a paddle board, you should never fall close to the board. Try to fall with your head far from the surfboard so that you do not hit your head against it.
Falling into the water is easier, getting back onto the surfboard is harder. Generally, the first surfing lessons will involve falling and rising back onto the board.
Reading a wave right is a different matter altogether. It can take many years to become a pro at reading waves.
There are different types of waves in the ocean. Some are dangerous for beginners and some are quite safe. Also, some waves might form in a certain way but finish differently.
Overall, the more you know about waves, the easier you will be able to identify them. Your instructor can help with this but you should also do your own research.
Can I teach myself to surf?
You can definitely learn how to surf on your own. However, it will take you much longer than if you had used a surfing instructor.
On your own, something might take you many years to figure out. With an instructor, these lessons might take you a few lessons to learn.
If you are really determined to learn how to surf on your own, start by taking a few lessons from an instructor.
After learning the basics, you can break out on your own. For the novices, surfing is also a dangerous sport.
You have to choose a good spot to take your lessons. Small waves, low currents and gentle weather are paramount when you are teaching yourself how to surf.
One of the things that an instructor does is to identify the danger spots and teach you how to navigate through them.
If you do not take lessons from a surfing instructor, you will never know some of these things.
Learning to surf needs you to be patient
No matter how determined you are, learning to surf takes a long time. Learning to ride a surfboard and catch a wave is simple.
How long to get good at surfing is not something that we can put a time span onto because there are many dynamics involved.
Youngsters, say, teenagers are agile and light on their feet. Also their willingness to learn is high so they might take a shorter time to learn how to surf.
Also, most of them don’t really care whether they embarrass themselves by falling over into the water.
Older people are heavier and they may get more tired faster. Thus, for them, it takes longer to learn how to surf.
Thus, it is fair to expect some people to learn how to surf faster. If you can dedicate more time to the sessions, you will learn to surf faster.
Since you start with the basics and then build up on the lessons, if you take the first lesson and then disappear for months, you might have to start afresh when you go back for the next lesson.
So stay consistent. Even if you make mistakes in the first lessons, keep working on yourself. Do not beat yourself up too much about it.
Can you learn to surf at 30?
You can learn to surf at 30, 40, 50, 60 or even older if you are of sound physical health. There is really no age limit to when to learn surfing.
However, when you are older, you will not learn as fast as a 12 year-old. You will have to be patient! You may also need to learn more consistently than a younger person.
If you are older and heavier, you will take longer to master the basic surfing skills. You must also not be embarrassed if you keep falling into the water.
Swells, winds and tides are some of the factors that you have to contend with when surfing. Therefore, when learning how to surf, you need to know how to read the tide, and the wind. At some speeds and sizes, these factors can be dangerous.
When learning how to surf at an older age, you definitely need a surfing instructor to teach you.
What is the hardest part in surfing?
when you are learning how to surf, the hardest part is to carry your surfboard from the shore to the water, getting on it and paddling out. You have to paddle out on your belly, get onto your knees and eventually stand on the surfboard.
Some people also find it hard to how to balance on the board. Some people learn some things faster, and some others.
Conclusion: How much time on an average does it take to learn surfing?
This is so hard to say. It can take hours to years.
What we mean by this is that by the end of two hours of the first lesson, you will know how to paddle a surfboard on your knees and eventually, how to stand up. This is progress!
However, to really know how to read waves, how to master the tides, swells and currents, that takes a lot of time. It can take some people months and it can take some years.
Surfing is a sport that you keep building on. There is not one time that you will say that you now know everything about surfing.
You will have to keep building on your skill with time. Everyday that you get out there on the water is a learning experience.