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The Complete Guide To SUP Surfing Etiquette / How To Respect The Lineup

Master the art of SUP surfing with a crowd by watching our Complete Guide to SUP Surfing Etiquette. You'll soon learn how to respect the lineup and have more fun doing it.

SUP surfers sometimes get a bad rep in the surf community and that is because we have certain advantages over other surfers. We can paddle faster and can see waves coming from a distance which means we have the ability to catch more waves.

In our Complete Guide To SUP Surfing Etiquette, we learn about the priority system, the best ways to minimise our impact on prone surfers, come to know the 10 commandments of SUP surfing etiquette when in a crowded lineup and a give you a couple of tips to have more fun on the water.

The 10 Commandments of SUP Surfing Etiquette

  1. Don’t be a snake: Wait your turn in the lineup and everyone will get their fair share of waves.
  2. Don’t drop in: that’s stealing someone’s wave
  3. Don’t be a wave hog: In other words don’t catch everything that moves. Be aware of your wave count
  4. Sit down every now and then – this help to keep a low profile
  5. Let waves go through – if you see a great wave coming, let it go. You’ll gain more respect this way
  6. Paddle wide and don’t ruin other surfers waves by being in the way
  7. Call out the sets for priority surfers – let them know a good wave is coming
  8. Sit wide on the peak to begin with and then integrate slowly into the lineup
  9. Say hello and be friendly in the water
  10. Know your ability level: If you can’t control your board, don’t surf with a crowd

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3 years ago

Great List! My go-to paddle spot is always busy. The problem with being a SUP surfer is that you are held to a higher standard. A kooky beginner/intermediate on a foamtop is given more slack than you are. But the great thing is that you can catch way different waves than most prone surfers! So I can have a lot of fun not being near the jetty. Not as long a wave perhaps, but still alot of fun without waiting for priority!

3 years ago

excellent video

3 years ago

Great video – a couple of questions if I may… 1) I think you say it’s Ok to go beyond the line-up as long as I wait and show I am waiting my turn? (On a SUP where I am, I can catch a wave 30 metres further out). 2) If someone else is a perpetual snake / dropper inner, what do you say and how do you best handle it? 3) If you’re in a break where the break changes exact location, often people say it’s for that person closest to the peak – thoughts on that? 4) A… Read more »

3 years ago
Reply to  Beau Nixon

Hi Beau, Many thanks for the responses. (I didn’t get notification you’d responded – not sure if I just missed that). Yes, to more info on camps and trips – will be relishing more info round that as sure there will be a big demand for. Thanks for all your great help.

2 years ago

Dropping in, is like pulling out of a road junction without looking. You’re totally in the wrong, it shouldn’t happen too often on a SUP as you should be taking off further out even than long borders. But always be aware, like you would at a road junction. You also have to bail a SUP sometimes, especially when paddling out through larger waves, so pick the less crowded spots, so your board doesn’t hit anyone else or their board. I like spots where there’s awater moving about, like river mouths, as prone surfers find it hard to deal with and… Read more »

Reuben Ellis
2 years ago
Reply to  Dave

Great comment Dave, and I also like the river mouth tip. Its a good one…

Micky Griffith
Micky Griffith
6 months ago

great video and advice as always. A helpful reminder. Tx

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