Many of us might try our hand at surfing when we’re on vacation by paying a fee to try it out in a warm climate. Personally, we love going surfing in Montauk. After all, who wouldn’t want to emulate surfers because they always seem so cool and tough? However, a lack of planning before a surf session is the largest error that novice surfers make. By being prepared, you can prevent a few things: venturing out in bad weather, being trapped inside by heavy surf, being wet, or becoming unwell.

Because surfing is a sport that takes a lifetime to master, we are aware of how difficult and disheartening it may be to begin. Understanding the unspoken laws or surfing’s code of conduct is the only thing that makes it simpler. Everyone can have a safer, friendlier, and more enjoyable surfing time if they follow simple safety rules and etiquette guidelines.

We’ll go over the essential information to know before going surfing so that you are prepared to make the most of a surf session.

Examine the surf conditions

The key to maximizing your surf session is assessing the current and predicted circumstances, despite what you might be assuming. Fortunately, the gland surf report features a detailed explanation of the current and anticipated surf conditions. In addition to conditions, things to look out for include surf height, wave duration, tides, weather, and wind. 

Keep in mind that the perfect circumstances for each surf area vary. In some places, mornings are generally the cleanest, and there is a gentle offshore breeze, which makes for excellent conditions, while evenings make the best surfing moments in other areas.

Ideal site circumstances

After assessing the weather and surf conditions, it’s time to delve more into what the optimal site circumstances are:

  • Swell Direction: Each location has a perfect swell direction because of its geography. Note that the sandbars, rocks, and reefs affect where the wave will break differently in each area. A general rule of thumb is that rapid, low tide produces punchy waves, whereas fat, high tide produces slow waves.
  • Wind: Offshore wind or little to no wind is what you want when surfing. Offshore refers to a situation where the wind is blowing from land to sea, which causes the waves to crest because the wind is blowing up the wave. Sea-derived onshore breezes tend to tangle, crumble, and make surfing less enjoyable.
  • Tides: Another factor to take into account is the tide’s direction, which has a significant impact on how the waves will develop. So what determines where the wave will break? It is the height of the highs and lows and whether the tide is coming in or going out.

Select your equipment based on your skill level

Now that you’ve assessed the weather and chosen a location, the fun part is choosing which board to bring! If you have one board, use it to its full potential. Choosing the best board from a selection of them might be nerve-wracking. Your board choice will depend significantly on the amount of paddling, the type of surfing, and the maneuvers you wish to undertake.

Starting on the wrong board will make learning much more complex, and those high-performance surfboards present a significant risk.

The following is a much-summarized list of board sizes to bring:

  • Small to medium surf on a longboard. Easy to ride and paddle, but more challenging to perform specific movements like walking up the nose.
  • Fun Board: tiny to medium waves. Easy to paddle and ride, but less sensitive on turns, and can be challenging to get out into the lineup.
  • Medium to large surf on a shortboard. More paddling, yet incredibly quick and sensitive on corners.

Choose the break wisely

No matter how skilled you get at surfing, you should never forget to evaluate your current ability level and general welfare before paddling out. As we advance, we should all be aware of how much pressure to apply, but above all, we must always respect the Great Lakes, rivers, and oceans. 

We are incredibly weak compared to the power of nature, and if you are not fully aware of your surroundings, any scenario can change very rapidly.

Beginners should only surf at well-known beach breakers when other surfers are around. Avoid the rocks and reefs, and seek gentle, small- to medium-sized waves so you can practice securely. Here’s a good list of the best surfing spots in the USA.

Every time you venture outside, you should evaluate every location. 

  • Is it out of your league in terms of skill? 
  • Do you have a warm wetsuit that is appropriate for the session? 
  • How fit are you, and how aware do you feel generally? 
  • Are you sober?

Think critically, be sincere with yourself, and practice safety. Saying that today is not your day is perfectly OK since there will only be other days if you are wise about it.

Here are some of the best beaches in the world for beginners:



Ironically, communication is a skill that is frequently underutilized, yet it may greatly enhance your surfing experience. First, starting with a simple “good morning” greeting can go a long way, especially when surfing a new spot. Ask left or right, for instance, if you find yourself paddling for a wave beside another surfer. 

You may find that you are both paddling toward the same wave. You’ll avoid fighting for it, missing the wave, or being in the wrong place if you communicate—better communication results in a more enjoyable atmosphere.

Coastal sight

The final and possibly most crucial stage in scouting the surf conditions before entering the ocean is to scan the area to discover any potential hazards. This might include wildlife, rocks, rip currents, longshore currents, etc. Determine the safest takeoff location, and wait patiently to time your entry after a set of bigger waves. Being caught on the inside when paddling out is never fun.

The takeaway

Look for some inside parts or a less crowded area if you are a beginner or lack the experience necessary to comfortably and safely hang at the peak. While you might not be catching the finest waves of the day, you will catch significantly more waves than if you tried to compete with the crowd.