The allure of the California surfer girl lifestyle is undeniably captivating. From their sun-kissed skin and laid-back cool vibes to their effortless board maneuvers, it embodies the ultimate girl crush envy. Who wouldn’t want to be them? However, the unfortunate reality is that most of us don’t live near the ocean. If, like me, you find yourself growing up far from the coast, the dream of becoming a surfer can often feel like a distant fantasy, something that gets you through an idle Tuesday.
But let’s debunk the misconception that being a skilled surfer is exclusive to coastal dwellers.
Whether you’re a city inhabitant yearning to escape the rat race or a girl who found inspiration in her first surfing documentary, this guide is here to bridge the gap between your wave-chasing dreams and your current reality.
Study the Art of Surfing – Learning from the experiences of others is an invaluable tool. Back when I couldn’t make it to the beach myself, I spent hours pouring over surf video after surf video, learning about the culture, understanding its unique language and most importantly following the movements of pros.
Practice Land Drills – We may not all have easy access to the ocean, so we’ve got to work with what we’ve got. I remember being surprised at how much work goes into training beyond being on the board. Practicing your pop-up technique can be achieved at home by using a strip of tape on the floor before a full-length mirror to assess your foot positioning, or employ a balance board to refine your stability. Recording your practice sessions and reviewing them on your phone is a great way to help refine your posture.
As with anything, practice makes perfect. So even if in the beginning you feel like that scene from ‘Forgetting Sarah Marshall’, when it comes to the moment you stand on your board for the first time, you’ll be grateful for all the hours you put in at home.
Strengthen Your Surf Muscles – While it might seem evident that the best way to train for surfing is, well, by surfing, the sport demands significant endurance and strength. Building your core surf muscles at the gym will prove invaluable by the time you hit the waves. Simple exercises like chin-ups, squats, push ups and planking all work towards your readiness to catch that elusive first wave.
Curate your Surf Attire – Much like your carefully curated Pinterest board inspo, preselecting your preferred surf attire can ignite the motivation needed to chase your dream. Looking and feeling the part are essential components of pursuing any aspiration and envisioning yourself on the waves is easier when you’re wearing the perfect surf bikini.
Explore Alternative Surfing – Don’t be confined by traditional notions of surfing. Inflatable boards offer a versatile and accessible option for those who may not have immediate access to the ocean. They allow you to practice your skills in various settings, from lakes to rivers, bringing the joy of surfing to unexpected places.
Engage with the Surf Community – In the digital age, engaging with the surf community from a distance has never been easier. Connecting with kindred spirits who can offer support, advice, and encouragement is so empowering. I discovered numerous women like myself, holding down regular jobs while eagerly anticipating and planning their next surf escape. Connecting with these fellow enthusiasts led me to my ideal first surf retreat. When I arrived, it felt as though we had been friends for years.
The heart of surfing, especially within longboarding, revolves around community. Longboarding isn’t about getting slammed by huge sets, it’s sitting in the line up chatting with your friends as you wait for the perfect wave. It’s all about joining in, not about being able to perfectly nose ride or hang ten. It’s an escape from the daily grind, a lifelong passion that allows you to detach from the corporate and reconnect to yourself and the natural world. It’s a passion that anyone can be part of, no matter where you’re from.
Ferona Jose is a passionate travel writer and blogger at Travelistia. She has traveled throughout Europe, Asia and the Americas. Her writing focuses on cheap travel destinations, travel experiences, cultural insights, and travel hacks.