So you’re an accomplished surfer looking for your next wave-related thrill? You’re a beginner looking to try out something new and exciting? or you’re a bodyboarder looking to take things to the next level? Well, stand up bodyboarding may be exactly what you are looking for. Stand-up bodyboarding had its big boom in the 80’s and the 90’s when it took the surf world by storm.
Not to be confused with the recently growing art of stand up paddleboarding, Stand-up bodyboarding is an almost forgotten hybrid between surfing and bodyboarding, that poses a new fresh challenge to even the most accomplished wave junkies. If you’re keen to try stand up bodyboarding, its unlikely you’ll find someone offering overpriced lessons at your local beach, so here are a few tips to help you on your way.
1. Choose Your Board Wisely.
As a stand-up bodyboarding beginner, it’s important for you to choose the right kind of board. The average size of a standard bodyboard is likely going to be too small for you to get upright whilst catching that first wave, so opt for a slightly longer board to give you some extra room whilst you’re getting started. Here is some help picking out a board.
Most seasoned stand up bodyboarders will highly recommend you DO NOT paddle out using fins. This will make it a lot more difficult when you are trying to replicate the pop-up motion to get upright on your board.
3. Start Small
Even if you are a seasoned surfer or bodyboarder and you’re comfortable with larger waves, stand up bodyboarding poses new challenges to what you will be used to. Take time to get a feel for the weight, size, and buoyancy of the board and focus your efforts on small (around 2 foot) waves.
4. Focus on Finding Your Balance
The key to stand-up bodyboarding, as with most of the wave-riding disciplines, is to find the balance between you, the wave, and the board. The weight and buoyancy of bodyboards differ greatly from that of surfboards, and it’s going to take time to adjust to the way the board reacts to your weight. Starting on small waves, focus on distributing your weight evenly on the board before extending your body to ride the wave. Once you’ve gotten a feel for it and found your balance, you’ll be jumping rail to rail to pull off those spins in no time.
Now you’ve read these four tips to help you get started, it’s time to get out there. Have fun on the waves!