Surfer girl with surfboards

Learning to surf – the social pressures

Surfing is a cool sport – there is no doubt about it.

When it comes to learning something new we as a human collective appreciate there is a certain level of skill which is required to become good, these skills once learned & developed over the years allow us to effortlessly and smoothly look good. Something we all aspire to.

Being seen

When it comes to surfing a certain stigma is associated with ‘being seen’ whether it’s in the latest surf apparel or simply being involved in the scene, strutting down to the beach. Looking the part plays a big role in an individuals surfing persona and confidence.

Typical surfers

But how do you learn to surf without looking like a kook

Attending surf school or being seen as a beginner surfer seems to be, for many, absolute social suicide. After all if your seen in the latest clothes and look like a surfer, who’s to say you don’t surf that well? Simply assume the persona and reap the social benefits of being cool by association & public assumption. Something thats surfing has long since suffered from.

Surfing and surfers unfortunately fall victim to the social pressure of needing to look cool, and to look cool you need to not be seen in a surf lesson. Better to risk it , head out on your own, blend into the crowd and try to not look like you don’t know what your doing for fear of discovery.

Take the short cut

For every skill attained there is the long draw out process of practise and repetition. If your heart is set on learning to surf and getting good quickly then actively seeking out regular tips from your piers, professional surfing lessons or self surf coaching, combined with deliberate practise is the quickest way around the long way.

Surfer on wave with rainbow
Find your rainbow

The best surfer is the one having the most fun

The truth about learning to surf is that even the best surfer in the water is learning, and given certain situations will also fall foul of the feeling of surfing inadequacies. Developing your surfing game is a never ending path and is something to be enjoyed.

Celebrate your surfing abilities and the stage your at, we’ve all the been there and all remember what it was like to face plant in front of a hot girl or guy, or miss time an absolute sitter of a wave, right in front of an eager hassling crowd.

Remember, surfing is a never ending travelator – you never actually reach your ultimate goal of surfing prowess. Enjoy where you are at and don’t worry about what you look like – No one actually cares anyway.

Never be too cool to learn

If your taking your new hobby seriously, people who are open to learning and taking advice form their peers become the faster learners and develop further. Ultimately, reaching your unreachable goal sooner with more style.

Jorrin MassinghamJorrin Massingham is the owner of Newquay surf school Cornish Wave. Born in South Africa Jorrin moved to the UK aged 9 before setting out to gain skills and experiences further afield.

Passionate about adventure travel and the outdoors, Jorrin gained wide ranging experience from around the world in travel, tourism and outdoor activities through a variety of solo travel, adventures and job roles.

Currently living in Newquay, Cornwall, when not delivering activities through Cornish Wave, Jorrin can be found planning new adventures both at home and overseas.


Cornish Wave Blog

  1. Hey Guest Writer, surf social pressure is so evident, especially with youngsters. Thanks for the reminder that they should be humble and take derive fun in doing it. Honestly, this article expanded my knowledge in surfing. I’m going to show my students a variety of fun ways to improve balance, agility and coordination paying keen attention to how to avoid the social pressure outlined above. I think this is awesome tips to use in the elementary junior surfers. Having lost quite a bit of weight earlier in the year, I also wish to urge everyone to learn this valuable ability. It’s the next big fitness activity, watch this space.

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