10 Tips for Selecting Your First Surfboard
Staying true to her passion, former pro-longboarder and veteran Las Olas surf coach Julie Cox recently launched Traveler Surf and Swim Club in Pacifica, California. The club provides NorCal surfers a welcome warming hut after a session as well as an impressive selection of surfwear, supplies, books, plus new and used boards.
Julie’s Jule Collection is a line of surfboards developed with the adult female surfer in mind. Her innovative shapes are designed for women who like to dream, smile, shine, and surf. We have a few of her excellent wave gliders in our quiver at Las Olas.
But choosing your first board can be daunting, so we asked Julie for some tips.
Photo: Camilla Fuchs
1. Most important, buy a board that makes you smile.
2. Be honest with your ability and understand that wide longboards are typically the most stable and easiest to catch waves.
3. Choose a board closer to the type of surfing you actually want to do and the type of wave where you’ll be surfing.
For example, if you want to be a shortboarder and your home break is a beach break, get a 7′ or so. If you want to be a longboarder and your home break is a point break go for something at least 3′ over your head.
4. Buy a leash and board bag to protect your new investment.
5. If you’re getting a used board, make sure all the dings are fixed and the board is not taking on water.
6. That said, buy a small tube of solar resin so you can learn to fix your own dings.
7. Don’t worry if your board is too wide to fit under your arm. There are many ways to carry your board and some people like and need that width. Try carrying the board on your hip or on the top of your head instead.
8. It’s good to take the advice of sales people, but listen to the inner you. If you find you are leaning toward a certain board, go for it!
9. A little known secret: Fins make a huge difference in how a board rides. Experiment with fins and know that just by changing your fins, you can change the way your board rides.
10. If you get out there and then feel you made the wrong choice, you can always resell your board. Or begin your quiver and get a few boards for different surfing conditions!
Photo: Lori Adamski-Peek
Athleta catalog cover girl Julie surfing at Las Olas in sunny Mexico, circa 2005. Proof that good surfing never goes out of style.