Surfing is a surface water sport in which the wave rider, referred to as a surfer, rides on the forward or deep face of a moving wave, which is usually carrying the surfer towards the shore.

Paddling – whether to get out through the waves or to catch a wave – is a key skill. You have to keep your body as still as possible and use the shoulders and arms to pull rather than twisting the body or head. Keep your feet slightly apart to aid stability.

When it comes to equipment, as a beginner you will need a wetsuit and surf board; longboards are usually a wise choice for beginners. They have a steadier center of balance due to their larger width and length and therefore tend to be easier to catch waves on when you’re first starting out.

On the other hand, many surfers chose to ride a short board from the very beginning, preferring the ease of controlling a smaller board in the water.

One of the most important things to consider for a beginner is that you have to be aware you are entering a new environment, and it’s full of hazards you don’t even know are there so you will have to be focused.

Cuts, bruises, sprains, and strains are the most common. Knee sprains and strains come top of the list, but a study in the American Journal of Sports Medicine found that surfers are less prone to injury than soccer or basketball players.

While surfing can be exciting, adventures and physically demanding, what ever you do, do not watch Shark Week before wading out into the Pacific Ocean waters.