Toronto Mike

What Are the Main Rules of Surfing?

When you are learning to surf, there are several skills and techniques that you need to perfect to ride your wave effectively.

Keep in mind that while these basics are essential, there is an unspoken law that every surfer abides –by– Surfing Etiquettes. These rules are more like guidelines to avoid misunderstandings or accidents when surfing. Do you know the trigger words for surfing? Read this here before you head out into the waters.

If you have just begun surfing, it is crucial that you understand these laws and follow them to respect your fellow surfers and enjoy your time out in the ocean. Here we go, eight surfing rules, in no particular order, that every surfer should know:

Don’t Drop-In

No matter where you are or who you are, dropping in is one of the worst things you can do to your fellow surfers. Dropping in means that you take off on the wave that another individual is right in front of them.

This movie shows a lack of respect for the sport and your surfers because you ruin the wave for someone else. Additionally, dropping in can be dangerous because two individuals cannot surf in the same direction, leading to accidents or serious injuries.

Right of Way

When you are paddling out into the ocean, it is obvious that you aren't the only one. One of the fundamental rules is knowing the right of way, which means the surfer closest to the wave's peak will go first. So if your wave break is on the right-hand side, the person on the right has the right of way.

Failing to follow this rule can be dangerous as you might collide with another surfer. However, if there is a split wave, two surfers can ride it because it will likely go in opposite directions.

Never Snake

We all want to ride waves as much as possible, but you must wait your turn. One of the most common mistakes that beginner surfers make is stealing someone's right of way.

Snaking is cutting in the line-up by paddling around surfers in an S shape where you position yourself as a right of way. It is very disrespectful to other surfers because everyone out there wants to surf. There are enough waves for everyone, so be patient and have fun.

Do Not Throw Your Board

While your surfboard is one of the most critical pieces of equipment you need, it can also become a weapon if you lose control of your board. As a beginner, it is vital that you learn to be connected with your board at all costs.

Ditching your board aside before diving into a big wave can be very dangerous because it can get into another surfer's path or even hit someone. You must learn different driving techniques with your board, such as Eskimo roll or duck dive, and make it a habit as quickly as possible.


Communication is key when you surf waves so that the people around you know who will ride the wave. By doing so, you will also gain the respect of your fellow surfers, and it will also help avoid any confusion in the water.

For instance, if you happen to catch a split wave, communicating with a surfer which way they decide can avoid a collision. Remembers, waves are constantly changing and shifting, so it is important that you communicate well and enjoy your surfing sessions.


Now following these rules can be difficult, especially as a beginner, because you are still learning the basics. Often you will break these rules when you are in the water but don't worry; a simple apology will suffice.

Even though the locals and other surfers might look down upon you for some time, it will gain youth respect as a beginner. A quick tip is to surf in less crowded locations or beginner-friendly waves so that people like yourself surround you.

By following the rules mentioned above, you will have a great time in the water.

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