How to Surf With a Life Vest
big surf,gros surf image by bacalao from Fotolia.com
Surfing is a fairly difficult sport that requires balance, experience and most importantly, a lot of practice. There are numerous injuries due to surfing every year, so safety is a primary concern when you are out in the ocean. Most surfers do not wear a life vest while surfing because it constricts your motion. However, wearing a life vest can protect you and even save your life if you are far out in the water. Knowing how to surf properly while wearing a life vest can increase your learning and your effectiveness while out on your board.
Put on the life vest according to its directions. Ensure that the vest is extremely tight and secure on you.
Wade your way through the water on your surf board, lying flat on your stomach. When you see the waves coming, put the front of your board down in the water and try to get under the crest of the wave. This will allow you to go under the wave without it bringing you back to the shore. When you do this, hold the board tight and push down with a lot of force because your life vest will keep you floating above the wave.
Face the beach and await a wave behind you when you are ready to surf. When the water rises behind your board, begin paddling quickly and prepare to stand up on your surf board.
Push off the board with your arms and bring your feet up onto the board. Crouch down on the board until you are balanced, the stand up.
Guide your surfboard through the water by using your front foot to direct the board. Shift your weight back and forth between your front and back foot and your toes and heels, based on your balance with the water pushing you toward the shore.
Pick a life vest the fits you snugly. It is better for the vest to be too tight rather than too loose. A vest that is too loose will rise up in the water while you sink down.
Never surf in dangerous conditions. Consult with the local lifeguard regarding whether it is safe to surf or not.
Alan Bass has been writing since 2008. His work focusing on sports topics has appeared in the "Hockey News" and online at Inside Hockey and HockeyBuzz. He received a presidential award from Muhlenberg College for academic and community achievements, in addition to a bachelor's degree in psychology and business. In 2011, he published a book titled "The Great Expansion: The Ultimate Risk That Changed the NHL Forever."