Tips and tricks for surfing in Winter
Surfing is a sport where consistency is key, so being able to surf all year round is essential to improving your surfing ability. We know that none of us really love the cold, let alone surfing in it! So we’ve come up with some tips and tricks that will make surfing in winter a little more comfortable.
It is important to ensure that you have the right equipment to suit the conditions. Having an adequate wetsuit is going to be the main factor in keeping you warm. The warmth of each wetsuit is determined by the thickness of neoprene in millimeters. For example a 3’2 wetsuit means there is 3mm of material in the chest and back with 2mm in the legs and arms. The thinner material in the arms and legs allows more maneuverability when paddling.
As the weather changes, your equipment has to change with it for the best success when heading out for a surf. Make sure you have the correct surf wax for the current water temperature. This information can be found on the packet, and each brand usually has a range of different waxes to suit different temperatures. If you are unsure, ask your Surf Getaways coach or your local surf store, they will educate you on both the correct wax and thickness of wetsuit for each of the seasons.
If you are someone who really tends to feel the cold there are a few additional items to keep you extra warm such as booties and gloves. Some surfers wear a hood to keep their head and ears warm - essentially by blocking out the wind. That way you will really be covered head to toe in rubber and stay warmer!
Now, if you really want to know every surfer's secret on how we keep ourselves warm in the water you have to be a little open minded… wait for it.. Pee in your wetsuit ! Yep – there you go, we said it. Have a hot coffee or tea before you get in the water then when you get in the cold ocean, well the rest can go unsaid.
When you get out of the surf is one of the moments when the cold hits you the most, that’s why we suggest bringing a thermos full of hot water to rinse yourself (and your wetsuit) afterwards. And remember that layers of warm clothing are your best friend after a cold surf. Beanies, scarfs, Ugg boots and jackets will make you much more comfortable. Having a hooded towel will make it easy to get dressed into your winter clothes too.
It is important to remember during these cold months why we surf, and the benefits of surfing in winter. Besides the fact that there are less crowds , immersing yourself in cold water is a great way to clear the mind, get the blood pumping and boost the immune system - overall a positive impact for our mental and physical health. And going out for a coffee afterwards with some fellow surfers helps make important social connections.
If you get demotivated by the cold and the winter months feel a bit isolating, our surf clinics and surf fit programs are a great way to meet like minded women who are also committed to surfing during the winter. It will help you find surf buddies that can keep you motivated to keep turning up during the colder months. Surfing with your friends will also keep you safe as you watch out for each other when surf breaks are quieter...