Back to Basics #05 Paddling for Beginners

Congratulations you are in the water and starting to paddle on your surfboard! Now what? We are here to share some tips on paddling out for beginners.

As a beginner your wont be paddling very far, you will be somewhere at the front line and if you had to hop off your board you would be able to touch the ground easily. The reason you should stay on your board however is the more time you spend on your board, paddling back out after a wave or paddling for waves, the quicker your body will adjust to balancing (and riding) on an unstable surface like the ocean.

Always remember to keep your hands cupped and alternate your strokes.

When paddling out and a wave approaches you need to navigate the best way through. Increase your paddle stroke (gain momentum), just as the foamy approaches lift your head, shoulders and chest up off the board (same as ladies press up – on the knees). Your surfboard pushes through (and not over) the white water while the white water passe the space you have created between your chest and the surfboard (always at 90° to the wave)

Hooray you are no longer taking in a mouth full of water! Make sure you don’t get dragged backwards (taking ten strokes forward and end up being dragged five strokes back)

As the wave passes, lay back on the board and start paddling again immediately. This will prevent you from the dreaded drag we all know too well!

You are on a paddling journey and it will take you many sessions to ace this topic. Don’t give up, even when you get the noodle arms feeling. We want to let you know it gets better with every surf session so keep going and before you know it you will be charging the backline!

To accelerate your surfing journey we reccomend you take a few surf lessons under the experience and guidance of a qualified Surf Coach. Book your next surf lesson now or Meet Our team of Surf Instructors here: