How To Do A Longboard Surfing

Table of Contents

Longboard surfing is one of the classic styles of surfing, characterized by the use of a larger and wider board with a rounded nose and tail. Longboarding is all about style, grace, and fluidity. If you’re looking to learn this timeless form of surfing, this guide will help you with everything you need to know about longboarding.


What is longboard surfing?

Longboard surfing is a style of surfing that involves using a larger and wider board than traditional shortboarding. Longboards typically measure between 8 and 10 feet in length and are 22 inches or more in width. They are more buoyant than shortboards, allowing surfers to catch waves earlier and ride them for longer periods of time.

Longboarding is about flow and style, rather than fast, high-performance maneuvers. Surfers use an array of techniques, including walking up and down the board, hanging ten (placing both toes over the nose of the board), and hanging five (placing just one foot over the nose of the board), to showcase their skills.


Why longboard surfing is popular?

Longboard surfing is popular because of its accessibility. Longboards offer a more stable platform for beginners to learn how to surf. They paddle easier, catch waves earlier, and provide more room for errors. Longboarding is also popular among older surfers who find that shortboarding is too physically demanding. The style is much easier on the body, and the larger boards make it more comfortable for older surfers.

Additionally, many surfers enjoy longboarding because of its timeless aesthetic. It hearkens back to the roots of the sport, when the goal was to ride waves with grace and style, not to perform aerial tricks. Longboard surfers also tend to be more social in the water, as they often chat and hang out with other surfers during downtime.


Tips for Longboard Surfing

Now that you know what longboard surfing is and why it’s popular, let’s get into some useful tips that will help you master this timeless form of surfing.

1. Choose the right longboard

Choosing the right longboard is crucial for longboarding success. The right board will give you the confidence to catch waves and execute tricks. The size of the board should be appropriate for your height, weight, and skill level.

If you’re just starting, consider getting a foam longboard with a soft top. They are user-friendly, durable, and less costly. As you improve, you can switch to a more advanced longboard with a fiberglass or epoxy coating.

2. Paddle-out technique

Paddling out is the first step to catching waves. Longboard surfing involves more paddling than shortboarding, so you’ll need to develop good paddle techniques.

Start by paddling from a prone position, parallel to the board. Keep your feet in the water with your legs close together to minimize resistance. Dip your arms fully into the water and pull through the water to propel the board forward.

3. Learn to read the waves

Reading waves is crucial in longboarding. Look for waves that break slowly and smoothly, with a long, fat face. These waves are ideal for longboarding because they allow you to perform maneuvers like noseriding.

You should also learn to identify the swell direction, spot channel markers and rips, and select your takeoff point. By doing this, you’ll be able to catch more waves and improve your surfing.

4. Master balancing

Balancing on a longboard can be a bit challenging because the board is bigger, heavier, and more buoyant than shortboards. Find your sweet spot by shifting your weight around the board. Angling your body forward will make it easier to catch waves, while angling backward will slow you down.

Riding a longboard also requires a lot of footwork. Learn to shuffle your feet to adjust your weight, pivot and turn.

5. Timing and positioning

Timing and positioning are essential to longboard surfing. Position yourself at the right spot to catch the wave early, and then start paddling as soon as you see it building. Don’t be afraid to paddle hard! The extra effort will help you get to your feet sooner and ride the wave for longer.

6. Practice your footwork

You can’t be a great longboarder without displaying great footwork. You should be comfortable with different footwork techniques, including hanging ten, hanging five, and walking up and down the board. Look for tutorials online or enroll in surf schools to improve your footwork.

7. Stay safe

Safety is paramount in surfing. Before heading out, make sure you have all the necessary safety gear, including a leash, wetsuit, and sunscreen. Check weather reports, tide conditions, and surf forecasts. If you’re not sure about the conditions, don’t hesitate to ask a more experienced surfer or rent a guide.


Final Thoughts

Longboard surfing is a rewarding and timeless style of surfing. By following the tips outlined above and practicing consistently, you’ll be on your way to becoming a skilled longboard surfer. Remember to stay safe, respect other surfers, and enjoy the ride!

Josh Mitchell

Josh Mitchell

"I live and breath boardriding"

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