The surfing community is an exciting thing to be part of, but as a new surfer, you may be finding it difficult to make surfing friends.
If you want to ingrain yourself into the surfing community you need to always be friendly, stick to the surfing etiquette, bring a positive vibe to the water, and show the respect to others that you wish to be shown to you.
If you are wanting to make some new surfing friends then the following article could help you do just that.
9 Tips to Make Surfing Friends
Making new friends is one thing during our everyday life, but making friends surfing can often seem like more of a challenge.
The following tips should help you break through any barriers you are facing while trying to make surfing friends in and out of the water.
1. Introduce Yourself
It is near impossible to meet new people if you are not willing to introduce yourself.
This is not to say that you need to tell each person you meet your entire life story, but simply greeting the other surfers in the lineup and introducing yourself can take you a long way.
Once other surfers know you by name you are no longer just another surfer in the water, but in their eyes become a “real person”.
This is the first step to making friends in the water.
2. Follow Surf Etiquette
If you don’t follow the rules then it is very likely that you will quickly make a few enemies instead of the new friends you are after.
There are not many rules in surfing, but there is a strict surfing etiquette that all surfers are expected to follow.
Some of these rules include the following:
- Respect those that have the right of way.
- Don’t drop in.
- Don’t snake.
- Don’t paddle through the lineup.
- The furthest out surfer gets priority.
- Don’t throw away your board.
- Communicate your movements.
- Don’t dive headfirst.
- Respect the beach and ocean.
- Give the respect to get respect.
If you familiarize yourself with the rules and make sure you stick to them you should find no problem with others in the water.
Remember, if someone is not your enemy, then they are a potential friend.
3. Celebrate the Wins of Others
Being selfish is not an ideal way to make friends.
Yes, you are in the water to surf, and the waves are limited, but instead of being annoyed when others catch a wave you were paddling for, you should instead cheer and congratulate them on the win.
Recreational surfing does not always need to be a competition. Once you stop surfing only for yourself and begin to enjoy the company of others, friends will quickly come.
4. Learn to Let Go
Learning to let go is one of the most important lessons we could learn in life.
Constantly walking around getting stressed and annoyed by small things others have done can weigh us down over time, and eventually isolate us from the rest of the world.
Yes, sometimes someone will break a rule or do something to annoy us, but we have the choice to get upset, irritated, and to scream at them, or to simply let it go.
If someone does you wrong in the water, for example, drops in on you, then instead of swearing at them and flapping around like a fish out of water, try to let it go.
If the problem keeps occurring it is also possible to simply inform the person of what they are doing.
For all you know, they are new to surfing and are not doing it on purpose.
5. Be Open to Learn
It is one thing to learn how to let things go and to try and teach those that are making mistakes.
It is another thing to be told you are doing something wrong and finding the humility in yourself to take the advice and not wave it off.
People are proud, and surfers are among the proudest of them all.
This, however, does not mean that we never need help, or that we should not openly welcome good advice.
If you take the advice that others give you in the water they will notice that you are making an effort, and instead of hating on you for making mistakes, will continue to help you.
This with some friendly conversation could make you a new friend in no time.
6. Stay Positive
Have you ever heard of the saying “your vibe attracts your tribe”?
This simply means that the people you find yourself around often reflect the energy that you give off.
If you stay positive and bring good vibes into the water, others will match that feeling, and the lineup will quickly become a joyful, friendly environment.
It is much easier to talk to a happy, positive person than someone who is down and all too themselves.
If others enjoy your energy in the water, they are likely to make conversation in the hopes that you could recreate the vibes on another day.
7. Go Where Surfers Would Go
Just as you wouldn’t go into the desert looking for fish, neither should you look for surfers in places they are very unlikely to be.
If you are looking for surfers while not in the water, you should consider where you may find them.
Surf bars, rental shops, coffee shops around popular breaks, and surf accessories shops are all places that you are likely to run into other surfers and have the opportunity to have a chat and make a new friend.
8. Dress to Fit the Culture
Although people come in all shapes and sizes, with different fashion senses, there are always a few cliche looks that are related to different activities.
Now, this is not to say because you walk around in board shorts with a bucket hat and long, blonde, curly surfers hair that people will simply come up to you and start talking about surfing, but it may help smooth the edges.
9. Show Respect
If you want respect you need to give that same respect to others around you.
It does not help to paddle out into a lineup with your ego so big that no one can see past you.
Showing local surfers respect, and giving them the first opportunities will quickly give you some respect of your own.
As a new surfer to a break you are often seen as the underdog, but follow the rules, be friendly to others and always show them respect and you will find yourself moving up the pecking order in no time.
Surfers can often seem cold and distant, especially to those that are new to the sport.
Although this can sometimes be true, surfers are often a lot more friendly than you would think, all you need to do is be open enough to break the ice.
If you show respect to others in the ocean, remain friendly, ask for help, and keep your cool, you will be making new surfing friends in no time.
Remember, the best way to meet new people and make new friends is by simply saying “Hi” and introducing yourself.