Tips for Beginning Surfers, Surf Tip #3

Tip #3: Where to paddle out. Giving other surfers some space, while also looking after your own safety.

The herd mentality...or at least in Los Angeles, the most direct line from the most convenient parking lot to the surf!

The spot where all the other surfers are might not always be the best spot -- Know that people tend to have the herd mentality. “If everyone is there then it must be good”. This is not always the case, especially at big open beaches. Maybe the waves are not quite as good down the beach but there is nobody out. If it looks safe, why not paddle out there and have it all to yourself? This way you don’t add to the crowd at a crowded spot and you have the chance to catch any wave that comes your way. As a beginner, the biggest piece of surf etiquette that you need to know and abide by is to give other surfers space. This is for your own good and theirs. Down the road, especially at advanced spots, paddling out and sitting right in the pack, ready to catch the first good wave that comes through is considered bad form. Its kind of like cutting in line at Pinks Hotdogs on a Saturday night...not a good way to make friends.