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Old 07-11-2018, 01:03 AM
LABlue LABlue is offline
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Teaching a kid to surf

For those of you that have successfully taught a kid to surf, please drop some pearls of wisdom. My 10 year old daughter really wanted to start surfing. Iím just starting myself, so I suck at it and canít teach her anything. I had no clue how to get her up on the surf board, so I started her on wakeboard first. It just seemed easier.
She got up on wakeboard for 1st time last week. Is this the right approach to take? Do you guys start out with wakeboard or surf board? And how to you teach a kid to stand up on surf board if you skipped the wakeboard experience? Iíll take any advice since Iím so new at this myself.
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Old 07-11-2018, 08:18 AM
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JP-OH JP-OH is offline
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Anything you can do tobuild confidence and get someone comfortable behind a boat on the water is a good idea so starting with an easier, more intuitive sport first makes sense.

Here is a good thread

50.241899, -115.857747
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Old 07-11-2018, 09:38 AM
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LaRue LaRue is offline
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Also, YouTube has more than enough videos to help people of all ages and skill levels to learn and improve.
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Old 07-11-2018, 10:29 AM
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peason peason is offline
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My 2 cents - My biggest concern with younger surfers is the tow rope. I think its best to have someone pull the surfer into the wake rather than let them pull them self and have slack rope anywhere near the surfer. We had a younger boy age 11-12 get his leg wrapped with the tow rope and fortunately everything was okay - but it did scare the heck out of us when it happened.
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Old 07-11-2018, 11:04 AM
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moosehead moosehead is offline
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We have had luck with beginners tying the surf rope to the top corner of the tower at the surfer side corner vs. the middle pylon. It keeps them out of the wave and wash during start up and in the pocket once up.

More than half our beginners also prefer another method vs. the heel flip, especially kids. At neutral they get into normal heel flip position, then we idle and then give it slightly more throttle and steer towards the surfer side of the boat. Surfer then puts their feet into the middle of the board and gets the board flipped 45 degrees prior to full throttle. It is a slower up but easier and less intimidating for many.

The heel flip seems to work for those beginners who are patient enough not to stand up to soon and stay knees bent.

We also use a shorter rope and t-handle which helps the angle to pull the surfer up and avoids rope wrap mishaps.
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Old 07-11-2018, 11:06 AM
jsx30 jsx30 is offline
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My 8 year old and 10 year old have both started surfing this season. I spent the last two seasons trying to figure out how to get them going. First, I think it took them gaining some confidence behind the boat. Tube, knee board, zup board were pretty helpful here. Once they figured out that they were going to be ok out there it made everything easier. I also worked with them at the dock with a surf rope and a board. I would get them used to getting their feet set and then pull the rope until they flipped the board and bent their knees. I did this until they were tired of it and were asking to try behind the boat. I also found that my 10 year old was much more willing to try with just me in the boat (she hates to fail especially in front of an audience). For beginners I've found that looping the rope around the tower rack mount on the surf side helps keep them one the correct side and outside of the wake. Once they get up a few times and have some board control you can quit doing this. I've also found that starting off with slow steady throttle increase is helpful. I dont fill any ballast until they start getting up regularly. I also start with a slight surf side turn of the wheel. Hope this helps...

Last edited by jsx30; 07-11-2018 at 11:18 AM.
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Old 07-11-2018, 11:16 AM
ryancassidy ryancassidy is offline
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If she's on the wakeboard and getting up... Keep going with that. She'll get the hang of the mechanics and eventually be able to switch to a surfboard. Unless you get a really small kids board, I've found it tougher for them to have learn on a surfboard. My son started surfing last year on a wakeboard and made the transition early this year to the surfboard. He also needed to put a little more weight on over the winter :-)

I've tried different tow points and all that and I find those aspects of it are more the driver and making sure that the driver gets the person in the right spot before pulling them up and subsequently how they pull them up.

You can also sit on the back of the boat, put the board against the swim platform and do some mock pulls manually. This also really helped my son with understanding the weighting, positioning, and getting the general feel for it.

Biggest thing I see beginners do is NOT have their arms extended all the way and/or on the inside of their knees.


Last edited by ryancassidy; 07-11-2018 at 12:01 PM.
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Old 07-11-2018, 11:30 AM
jsx30 jsx30 is offline
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Here's a couple of Instagram links...I don't know how to upload video on here...


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Old 07-11-2018, 12:13 PM
LABlue LABlue is offline
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Thank you everyone. YouTube wasn’t too much help for me. Maybe I didn’t find the best videos, or maybe I just wasn’t patient enough.
Good call on T handle to avoid wrap. I didn’t think of that. Definitely getting one of those.
I actually didn’t think about positioning the surfer to the side before I pull them up. That actually makes a ton of sense.
The tower attachment location is also something I didn’t try. Going to give that a shot.
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Old 07-11-2018, 12:37 PM
MCAlberta MCAlberta is offline
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All great advice, especially having someone in the boat pull on the rope to get them into the surf vs having the kid try pulling up on the rope to move up, my one daughter bailed over the front of the board the other day after doing that. What I've been trying with all 3 of my girls is being in the water with them when starting, to prematurely turn the board up for them so they can plant their feet a little earlier. Has worked great for my middle daughter where she gets up on the 2nd or 3rd try each time now, oldest is very close and I think the youngest just needs more strength first. Just need to make sure you have another competant person to drive the boat
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