There are so many levels of surfing! Am I still a kook?
It depends on your definition of Kook but this is a quick and funny blog on breaking down the levels of surfers into 4 categories. The Poser, The Kook, Intermediate and Advanced.
Since I started surfing in #SanDiego I have realized a few things. One is that almost every single person in San Diego either says they “surf”, “have surfed so they know how to”, “don’t know how to surf but really want to learn how” or “they try to surf as much as they can”. The bottom line is that nearly everyone SAYS that they like to #surf or would like to learn.
The second thing I have learned is that as soon as winter comes around 95% of the people that said they “surf”, “have surfed so they know how to” and “don’t know how to surf but really want to learn how” DISAPPEAR!!!
If you have a longboard and no wetsuit or a wetsuit and no #surfboard...I hate to tell you but right now you are in the “POSER” category of surfers. Most people say they have surfed a few times so they know how to surf or want to learn how to surf UNTIL the weather is not the perfect summer heat, the temperature is below 70 degrees or the waves are bigger than 2 feet. Then suddenly you cannot find them anymore!
As soon as surfing is not as easy, enjoyable or convenient as they first expected the poser’s #Wavestorm can be found collecting dust in the garage!
So one tip for the Surf Posers out there...do not expect learning how to surf to be a completely enjoyable process. You will fall, you will struggle, you will fail, you will want to quit....but remember that nothing worthwhile is ever going to be easy! SURFING IS WORTHWHILE!
Here is an article to keep you #inspired while struggling to first learn how to surf (https://www.surfertoday.com/surfing/why-you-should-never-give-up-surfing)
The infamous surfer kook. Not sure how to put their wetsuit on the right way. Not sure what kind of board they have or why they have it. Not sure what leg the leash is supposed to go on. (The Dominant foot, the one you kick with, should be in the back!) There is a lot of stuff still going wrong with your surfing experiences on the Kook Level of surfing.
The kook deserves respect but really for the main reason that they are trying and not giving up. Trying harder than the poser that’s for sure…
If you are at the kook level of surfing you are probably just learning all about surfing and the amazing benefits that come along with it. You are probably telling all your friends about how amazing surfing is and how you cannot wait to get back in the water again! Surfing truly is a natural high and once you get that “classic surfer high” it is hard not to scream it to the world! GO SURF!
#Kooks usually have wavestorms or #shortboards that they clearly do not have the skill to surf yet. Keep shredding Kooks, you’ll grow out of this level eventually. It is all about not being afraid to ask questions! Any intermediate surfer will let you know what you are doing right and what you are doing wrong and most will happily tell you while other grumpy surfers may bark it at you in the water! “Watch where you are going next time kook, you nearly ruined my wave!” Ignore the grumpy ones though, they all used to be where you are now.
The Intermediate Surfer…
The Intermediate Surfer is one that can surf not only an 8 foot foam/soft top longboard but also a hard top and one that is shorter than 7 feet. An intermediate surfer can also perform a duckdive in order to paddle out on waves bigger than 3 to 4 feet in size.
If you are able to catch more than half of the waves that you paddle for (and you go for more than one wave of course ya kooks) then you can comparatively label yourself intermediate!
The key to truly know you are an intermediate surfer instead of just a Kocky Kook is that you DO NOT tell everyone or anyone for that matter that you are now an “Intermediate Surfer”. This action AUTOMATICALLY MAKES YOU STILL JUST A KOOK!
Just because you are better than other kooks now that you are catching tons of waves and using a shortboard surfboard does not mean that you go and tell it to the world!
At the intermediate level you should be able to go both #frontside and #backside, be able to catch more than half all of the waves that you go for, be able to do small maneuvers on the face of the wave like a #bottomturn and do a basic version of pumping on the wave (generating speed on the waves by going up and down the face of the wave).
The Advanced Surfer
The Advanced Surfer is most likely exactly who you think it is….it is the surfers you watch that carve the waves with ease. Surfers that throw huge cutbacks, aerials and the surfers who come out of barrels are on this next level of surfing.
The Advanced surfer doesn’t even think they are good at surfing because they are constantly challenging themselves to get better. If you are at this level of surfing you know your talent and you are constantly honing your skills.
An advanced surfer is one that has dinged or broken a board or two, built up their personal quiver (a quiver is a collection of surfboards for those Posers and Kooks that don’t know the lango yet) and who does not care how cold the water is or how early the session because all that matters is getting in the water and feeling the freedom of riding a wave that no other human will ever get to experience.
An advanced surfer in turn is also a passionate surfer. You need to go out surfing and make improvements throughout the calendar year in order to see real progress through these levels of surfing. It is a very difficult start but once you are able to stand and ride the face of a wave the rest is just a cherry on top!
This quote is one of my favorites and no one knows who said it first but whoever it was clearly was a genius advanced surfer themselves…
”There are a million ways to surf and if you are smiling then you are doing it right.”
An Advanced Surfer who comes out from a surf session more frustrated than when they entered the water is always going to be a KOOK. The Poser who finally gets the cojones (balls in Spanish) to drop into a wave no matter how small it is and comes out after a surf session happier than when they went in the water will always be closer to an intermediate surfer than a KOOK!
I hope you all know now exactly where you stand as far as what level of surfer you are yourself and the ways you can get to that next level.
Remember that surfing is all about fun and enjoyment and connection with mother nature so to come out of the water in a worse mood than before goes against all things surfing is meant to stand for and create.
If you fall on 1 wave but come out smiling and ready to try again then you truly are understanding surfing and all that it has to offer. If you go out and fall on a wave and never want to surf again then you are just like me! I quit surfing the first time I tried to learn because after 3 or 4 sessions I still could not catch waves so I just started Boogie boarding! (Do not even get me started on boogie boarding as it is even worse in the surf community than being a Poser!) Surfing is about progress just like life is. No one succeeds without hard work and determination. You got this! I tried again even after quitting and it is now and will forever be a passion of mine and I hope it becomes one of your new passions as well!
Check out the new GoSurf Mobile App today to get lessons from local surf instructors, find surfers to take pictures/videos of or to have someone film and photograph you to really see that LEVEL UP! https://www.gosurfsd.com/