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Hang High On Surfing

Aug 17, 2007
Surfing is a water sport where you attempt to carry yourself while riding a surfboard on a breaking wave. Apart from surfboards, surfers also use other carrying equipment such as kayaks, water skis, long boards and even kneeboards.

Surfing started off as a recreational, fun activity and is now a billion-dollar industry, what with companies getting into the sponsorship act because they want their sports merchandise to be hyped around and sold.

The Surf Culture

There are three kinds of surfers - those who want to surf because of the money, those who want to surf for the fun and recreation it offers, and those who are professional surfers, but don't want to sell their souls for money - the last category of guys are known as soul surfers.

Common surfing terminology

Regular foot: When you place your right foot on the back of surfboard
Goofy foot: When the left foot is placed on the back of the surfboard
Take off: When you begin the ride
Drop in: Dropping into the wave
Duck dive: Diving underwater along with your board, like a duck, and then emerging as the wave breaks
Snaking: Going around some other surfer
Shoulder: The part of the wave that doesn't break into surf
Over the falls: When you go out of control
Pump: a movement that generates speed
Stall: Slowing down the speed of your board
Floater: Riding on top of the breaking part of the wave
Hang-five/hang-ten: Placing five or ten toes over the nose of a longboard.
Re-entry: Hitting the brim of the wave and re-rentering the wave in quick succession.
Tube riding: Riding inside the curl of a wave
Carve: Turns
Air/Aerial: Riding the board briefly into the air above the wave and then landing back on the wave.

Surfing dangers

Every sport has some danger associated with it and surfing is no exception. The main danger of surfing is of drowning, and if a surfer is not confident of swimming back to the shore in case he loses his board, then he must not venture out alone or in dangerous waters.

Then there is the chance of a surfer colliding with another surfer, or on rocks or reefs, and rendering himself unconciousness in the sea. The precaution to take would be to surf in a group or have someone watch you from the shore.

Then there are sharks too - but that is a negligible danger.

Training to surf

To surf, you need to have solid upper body strength, which can give you the wherewithal to fight for at least 5-10 minutes against a strong wave, after which you need to have the strength to swim back to the shore. So, for the upper body you need medium-intensive weight training. Push ups too are a great exercise to develop upper body strength.

Then you need low-medium weight training for your lower body muscles because while swimming you move your hips and legs quite a bit.

Along with strength you need to build up endurance and stamina too and for these, you can take up jogging, running or any aerobic exercise that will improve your cardiavascular system.You also need to stretch your limbs and get your flexibility going because surfing needs you to be flexible as you navigate around the rough waves.

A good, healthy diet and nutrition will make you feel light and enjoy surfing a lot more than you ever expected.

Go ahead, hang ten and gimme five!
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