Surfing Cheat Sheet

A neighbor’s sister came out surfing with me a couple of weeks back when she was visiting from California. Although she’s an avid windsurfer, she never tried surfing. I gave her my longboard to use and gave her some help (Lord, help her, she’s in the wrong hands), and she did pretty well. However, she commented that there was a lot to remember when going for a wave.
I started considering that which we take for granted. When I was first learning and teaching myself, I always thought it would be nice to have a few instructions with me, but alas, the conditions weren’t quite ideal for a manual or an iPhone app. So I thought an old school solution would work to help her out the next time she visits.
I picked up some index cards at the drugstore, although blank business cards or a small piece of cardstock would work also.

Super cheap! .99 cents

You can either print out for handwrite some instructions or tips for yourself, if you’re learning, or for a newbie friend. My tips also include a suggestion point for chin placement when paddling that you can determine on the sand before you go out and position in place on the board- the instructions will be easily read above it. The chin mark tip I learned from Deb at Natural Art Surfboards. My favorite board is from there. 😉 Here’s my little reminders instead of annoyingly saying them over and over:

PADDLE HARD! STAY LOW!     
DON’T FALL? Thanks Captain Obvious….

Reminders to place your hands on the deck instead of the rails when popping up was a step my friend kept forgetting, so I made sure to put that in, as well as “BEND YOUR KNEES!” I know they’re not going to read this novel whilst dropping in, but when you’re teaching yourself and sitting waiting for waves, it’s some good reading to memorize.
Next, you can place the card into a laminate sleeve, or just seal it up with clear packing tape, like I do. Hey, it works. I cut the card above out and trimmed off the excess.
Next, take their board and find the area where you’re going to place the card and scrape the wax off and even take some of the wax grease of with mineral oil. This will help the card mount better when you tape over the top and bottom of the card to the deck of the board with some more clear packing tape.

A little scrapin’ and some mineral oil

You can even wax over this, as long as it doesn’t obscure the text too much. If you’ve got a foam (soft) board, I would get quilter’s pins (found at the craft store) and tack the card in on each corner into the foam (it won’t break through to the back if you angle it in slightly). And no, they won’t leave gaping holes in the board. Just take them out after each session so they don’t get rusty.

Quilter’s pin

So here’s my card attached to the surfboard, waxed over:

Read it and weep, really….

Unfortunately, I follow the “Chin Here” advice quite a bit- but only after I wipeout on a wave….

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