If you haven’t ever thought of yourself as a swimmer before then you’ll find this really helpful.
You can have a lot of fun surfing in waist deep water but the day will come when you’ll want to paddle out a bit further and that’s when the swimmers have a head start. The nice thing about swimming is that you’ll get really good at it really quickly. Get to your local pool a couple of times a week in the month leading up to your trip and the pay off will be huge.
If you’ve never done any swimming before here’s how to get started. The stroke you need for surfing is front crawl (sometimes called freestyle). Find someone at your local pool who can watch you do a few lengths and give you a couple of pointers on your technique, consider having a few swimming lessons too. On Day 1 you may be exhausted after one length and you’ll wonder whether it’s really for you. Don’t worry, that’s normal. Day 2 you’ll be able to do two or three before you have to stop and after a few weeks you’ll be able to do 15 or 20 which is fantastic. Don’t worry about how long it takes, it’s much more about settling into a nice rhythm, rather than sprinting along (but no breast stroke though!)
The other thing you can do to give yourself a head start is yoga. The philosophy behind yoga does not appeal to everyone but the work out it provides is invaluable to us as surfers.
If you’ve been doing any swimming, yoga or anything else to prepare for your surf trip we’d love to hear about it…