Do You Know to Paddle Around the Impact Zone When Surfing

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keep clear of impact zone
Chey surfing Yok’s on Oahu’s Westside. You would paddle far off to the Right paddling out to stay away from the impact zone.

 Have you learned how to judge the impact zone and what to consider in the different conditions when you are surfing?  The impact zone is where the waves have the most energy and where systematic water motions give way to heavy duty turbulence in the surf.  But it is the most exciting part of the ocean. 

If you want to learn more about how the waves work, check out oceanographer Willard Bascom’s book “Waves and Beaches”.  Mr. Bascom writes about how and why waves work.  The impact zone is the most exciting & fun part of the ocean while surfing.  Its very important for surfers to spend time when you arrive at the surf spot to check out the waves and sets for ten to twenty minutes, which will give you a better understanding what to expect when paddling out and how to avoid the impact zone.

Its important you check out all of these elements, which will help you decide if you are going to surf the surf spot you 1st arrived at or go down the road to another that you will enjoy and catch more waves.  You need to access these questions to give you the most information.

1.) How big the waves are for you?

2.) Look where the waves are breaking?

3.)  How consistent the waves are coming in?

4.)  How many waves are coming in per set?

5.)  How crowded the surf spot is for the time being?

6.)   When you decide which spot you are going to surf, find out where is the easiest channel to paddle out & around the impact zone.

7.)  Remember when you paddle out always be courtesy and respectful to other surfers in the ocean.

The Moana (ocean) teaches all of us the best time to exercise patience, when to go and paddle for the wave you want to catch.  

Its so very important to learn to read the ocean, the weather maps or even check the surf websites in your area.  Example worldwide, for Australia and in the Hawaiian Islands.  Learning to read the ocean is the most is the most important in learning to surf.  When you are doing research to find a quality surf school look for a surf school that will teach you all about reading the ocean, giving you an excellent foundation on the beach before going out into the surf and will have very experienced surf instructors with a company that has a long standing of quality and patience.  A very professional surfing school is best so you can get the best foundation possible, as this will allow your surfing to progress so much easier.

If you can learn to read the swell directions, the wind directions, the tides, and the personality of the surf spots in your area it will make such a huge difference understanding this information.  Which in turn will bring so much fun and riding more waves each time you paddle out.  And when you know if the tide is coming in or going out, this makes such difference to catching the surf at its best during the day.  These are signs which bear upon how the waves are breaking that day and weather you are going to paddle out, wait a little longer, or go home and have breakfast.   Example in Hawaii when you go super early at some spots or during different swells the ocean can have morning sickness.  Morning sickness is when the surf and waves are pretty messy.  You take the time for the tide to come in more or the wind to swing another direction it will make all the difference on how your conditions will be for your surf session.   And when you wait it, can make all the difference so the waves become smooth and more consistent to catch a bunch of waves, rather than paddle out to early into onshore sloppy conditions and get caught off guard in the impact zone.   

Have fun in the waves, respect others, learn to read the surf and you will have respect of the more experienced surfers.  When you have respect of the more experienced surfers you will catch more waves.

Have fun and see you in the waves!  Happy Surfing! 

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