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How to stand up on a surfboard

by Ashley Barnard [January 29, 2007]

So you've managed to get out in the water and you want to work on standing up. Head back to the beach where the surface is solid. Many surfers believe that your surfing stance is the most important part of surfing. Take time to get it right on land. After you have mastered it there, feel free to give it a go in the water.

The first thing you do is to lie on the sand or your surfboard (if your fin can be removed to avoid damage) or pick a different object that is solid. Quickly do a simple push-up and as your arms extend fully, pull both knees toward your stomach and hop to your feet. Keep doing this until you no longer have to think about the steps and it becomes one smooth motion. By doing it as quickly as possible, you will stay balanced on the surfboard. Standing on a surfboard requires confidence. Practice your "pop-ups" until it is almost a reflex.
If you don't feel comfortable going to both feet, try the "monkey method". Much like a monkey, you will put all of your weight on your arms as you walk your leg up to the center of the surfboard. The process is the same as you prepare to stand up, but instead of pulling your knees to your chest, just drag on knee up and plant it under you in the center of the surfboard. Push up on your front foot into a standing position.

Now that you've mastered standing up on solid ground, head out to the choppy waters. Paddle for a wave until you feel the wave push you forward. When you feel the momentum of the surfboard flow faster than you can paddle, it is time to rise up on the surfboard. Gripping each rail firmly with your hands, quickly push up your body. Just like when you practiced on the sand, extend your arms completely and pull your knees to your chest. Keep your weight centered, and slightly forward, so you don't lose momentum. Firmly place one foot above the midpoint and the other near the tail. While it might be tempting to keep your back knee on the surfboard, it is essential to keep both feet planted. This will allow you to have better balance while surfing.

Instead of standing straight up, keep your body low and centered on the midpoint of the surfboard. Even though you want to stay centered, don't bend over or crouch too much. It will cause others to think you are a bad surfer. Staying low also allows your turns to happen smoothly. Remain confident and calm as you work on all of the basic steps of surfing, including catching a wave, duck diving, standing up and more.

So remember, standing up on the surfboard is as easy as 1, 2, and 3. Just follow these rules:

Grasp each rail with your hands and push your body up off of the surfboard.
Extend your arms completely and pull your knees to your chest or drag one knee up to your chest and shift your weight off of that one foot.

Plant your feet firmly on the surfboard and stand in a semi-crouched position.
Keep in mind that standing is all about balance. Your surfboard will always follow your eyes, so keep your eyes forward. While the position of your feet depends on the size and shape of your surfboard, it is important. Your position should allow you to turn and control your surfboard as quickly as needed.
If you liked this article and found it helpfull then visit our site at www.justsurf.info for more tips and ideas on how to surf.