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Longboard Surfing Tips for Beginner Surfers

Written by Colin Kint

Longboard surfing is synonymous with positive feelings, a relaxed lifestyle, and comfortable wave riding. However, whether you’re a modern longboarder or a conventional logger, there are a few rules to remember when sharing the wave with other wave surfers because longboards are not the same as surfboards. They’re heavier, larger, and more deadly. To put it another way, they’re a dangerous tool for even the most seasoned wave surfer, since there is a more or less pointed and razor tip threatening to rip a fellow surfer’s skin in a fraction of seconds.

Longboard Surfing Tips for Beginner & Intermediate Surfers

Longboard Surfing Tips for Beginner & Intermediate Surfers

1. Choose the right equipment

Longboard design varies greatly, but the building material, length, thickness, and rocker will bring you exactly where you need to go. Tail designs have less of an impact on the ride of bigger boards than they do on smaller boards.

Weight is an important factor, but you must feel that by yourself. Take a look at the board and get a feel of it. A decent longboard requires a little weight to provide true control and direction down the wave. If you’re considering buying a board from a surf shop, check if they’ll allow you to test out several first and see what you prefer.

2. First try on the ground

Be as relaxed as possible, sensing the board beneath your feet and getting acclimated to the motion of your longboard on the wave. You must maintain a relaxed posture to begin walking on the longboard. If your feet are locked in the same posture and you are uptight, it will be much more difficult. Consider it like dancing while you cross-step.

If you’re stiff, uptight, and nervous while dancing, it won’t work. Instead, imagine flexible, comfortable, light-footed, and fluid dancing while cross-stepping on your longboard. Even just thinking about these things while surfing will apply them to your surfing performance.

3. Always use a leash while surfing

This must be the first rule for every modern longboarder. We’re all aware that longboard surfing requires a significant amount of cross-stepping. A leash can potentially be an issue since it restricts free mobility on top of the longboard. Some surfers have implemented a no-leash policy after witnessing that their favorite rides can smoothly go down the pipeline without a leash. Leashless longboards have become a style expression.

Style, on the other hand, comes at a great costA relatively large wipeout, a sudden drop, or a mismanaged duck dive will result in the loss of the longboard and potentially serious injury to other surfers. Surfing without using a leash is irresponsible behavior that may result in legal consequences. You must only go leash-free on rare and special occasions.

4. Avoid crowded peaks and swimmers

There are usually more individuals in the ocean when the surf location is small. It’s important to keep in mind that a swimmer won’t be able to shift direction or go sideways quickly. So, if you’re paddling or surfing on small rollers, keep a safe space between yourself and everyone else.

Also, keep in mind that an overcrowded lineup full of extremely competitive paddlers is never a favorable or safe situation for a logger. Find a more peaceful, laid-back location where everyone appears to be content and peacefully enjoying their time while longboard surfing.

5. Don’t ride the big waves with your longboard

For overhead surfing, a longboard isn’t the best equipment, especially in rapid, barreling waves with frequent closing guillotines. The possibility of damaging a leash and harming you and others is great if you lose control of your longboard during severe waves. They’re extremely heavy and occasionally too huge for rapid and difficult bottom spins, and in the event of a wipeout, they’ll most likely end up on the shore.

6. Share waves with others

Longboard surfers will usually grab any wave before anybody else. They frequently wait outside and take precedence before shortboards begin to paddle. In principle, they can take all waves while leaving nothing for shortboard surfers. This scenario can result in stressful times, rivalries, and harsh exchanges of words. Wave monopolies should be avoided, according to common sense. As a result, avoid becoming a wave hog and allow a few good waves to pass, so everyone can have their share of fun.

7. Kick out carefully

Keep your longboard close to you at all times after you complete your ride. You don’t wish it to fall on someone’s head, particularly in windy conditions. High-flying, spectacular kick-outs are not worth the danger. Also, keep in mind that if you’re changing your shortboard with a longboard, you may need to modify your current behaviors and techniques to the new situations.

8. Watch your surroundings

Be sure not to abandon the longboard whenever duck diving or doing a turtle roll in large waves. Otherwise, it could strike someone’s head and knock him or her out. Estimate the submerged dive and glance back for surfers and swimmers, then alter the course as appropriate and concentrate on your surfing.

9. Keep an eye on the weather and tides

There are many surf prediction websites that you may use to stay up to date on the current surfing conditions. The easiest approach to get the maximum out of these surfing forecasting websites is to consider your location as well as the level of detail you want from the forecast.

A surf report takes into account a variety of factors. This can make understanding and evaluating these variables to get a broader picture extremely challenging. Waves and their height, wind intensity and orientation, and tide movement all influence the surf conditions. Considering all of these variables gives surfers a better understanding of the surfing conditions they might expect at that moment.

Mistakes to Avoid While Surfing on a Longboard

Mistakes to Avoid While Surfing on a Longboard

  • Instead of grabbing the rails, place your hand flat beneath your pectoral muscles

Holding the rails makes it more difficult to maintain your balance and produces friction beneath, slowing you down.

  • Pushing up with your arms in front of you is not a good idea

This is a classic example of a “protection reflex.”. When you ride a wave, you may automatically put your arms in front of you to shield yourself. It is difficult to perform a pop-up with your arms in front of the longboard.

  • Do not place your knees on the longboard

Another typical mistake is putting your knees in front of your longboard rather than your feet. It not only adds steps and complexity to your lift-off, but it’s also a terrible habit in the long run for significantly larger, steeper swells that don’t allow you much space to pop up.

  • If you put your front foot down first, you will finish up too far backward on your longboard

Putting your rear foot first, following your front foot, is the simplest method to maintain your pace and keep with the waves.

  • Avoid bending your knees

Maintain your knees bowed and your lower torso compressed. When your knees are straight, it is quite difficult to maintain your balance, and you will almost certainly fall.

  • Avoid bending your upper body

This is by far the most frequent mistake we see newcomers make. As they attempt to maintain their balance while standing, they lower their upper torso down to move it closer to the longboard. Surfers frequently finish up falling off their longboards in front of them. When you lower your upper torso, you can’t observe where you are heading and you can’t perform a decent turn by engaging your shoulders, torso, and head.


1. What size should my longboard be?

Ans. Beginners should purchase a longboard that is 9’4″ in length and 25 inches broad. Skilled surfers moving from a shortboard should use a longboard that is at least 9’5″ long and 22 inches broad.

2. How big waves should I surf on a longboard?

Ans. Longboards perform best between 1 and 3-foot waves. A longboard is a great option to ride in famous surf locations like Hawaii and California since there are many pauses between larger waves.

3. Can you ride big waves on a longboard?

Ans. Don’t ride the large waves with your longboard. A longboard isn’t the best choice in fast and big waves, because if you lose balance during big waves, you face the risk of harming yourself.

About the author

Colin Kint

Colin is in his mid twenties and a professional skateboarder whom you may already know. He participated in most of the skateboarding competitions in San Francisco. His innate passion for the sport drove him to pursue his career as a professional skateboarder. Another reason why he’s so good at it could be his relentless practice sessions with his friends. Apart from that, Todd also volunteers in various community awareness programs. He’s an environmental activist with an undergraduate law degree and an expert photographer as well. He does most of the photography of our site.

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