We’ve had some average surf over the weekend. Still good enough to have some fun out there. Great conditions for beginners, which suited me quite well as Saturday was surf lesson time. Surf lesson time means I was teaching someone else to surf. Having said that, usually they are lessons for me too as there is always plenty to learn from other people too and sometimes, it’s just a little reminder of what’s seemingly obvious.
Funny enough, most surf lessons remind me that surfing is about having a good time no matter what level you are at. It’s about that feeling of catching a wave, that rush you get when the wave picks you up. And that smile on a gidget’s face who just experienced that feeling for the first time is the best reminder.
Unfortunately, that feeling of joy quite often gets jaded by fear or pressure of standing up that my eager students put on themselves. I understand riding waves standing up is seen as the ultimate goal. However, I have a bit of a different view on that. I think the ultimate goal is enjoying yourself in the water. I quite often encourage my learner gidgets not to worry about standing up and just focus on catching waves on their bellies to start with. That way you’ll get a feel for the waves which takes away any fear or pressure. You’ll get to enjoy the thrill of the moment when the wave picks you up and carries you towards the shore. I promise when you are ready you’ll be able to stand up.
Even more experienced surfers fall into the pressure trap. I do. Sometimes I catch myself putting pressure on myself to catch that last wave in and make that last wave an especially good one. One of two things usually happen. It’s the worst wave of the day and I keep going back until I have one that I find worthy of being the last wave or it feels like I jinxed it and I’m not catching anything for ages. Either way, so quite often the ‘famous last wave’ ends up in frustration. An otherwise good session, now is only an average session because it took me half an hour to catch the last wave in. Nothing good comes from pressure I figured…
Or I’ve seen surfers get super grumpy rather than enjoying the time out there because the take off did not go according to plan or they did not make that section…you find yourself stuck in the whitewash? So what? You may as well enjoy the ride in the whitewash instead of being grumpy bums not making the section. We get so caught up sometimes with the way things should be rather than enjoying the way things are.
I guess, it’s good to know where you want to get to but don’t put too much pressure on yourself and most importantly, don’t forget to have fun on the way. I guess that’s not only true for surfing…
No massive waves this week, but you should be able to find some 2ft waves most of the week.
Have a great week gidgets and friends of gidgets.