1. Sports
Send to a Friend via Email

Your suggestion is on its way!

An email with a link to:

http://surfing.about.com/cs/surfingfaq/a/11804whatis.htm

was emailed to:

Thanks for sharing About.com with others!

You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

What is Surfing?

By

What is Surfing

Surfing is timeless

What is surfing but an outlet for anxiety and stress, an inlet for nature and satisfaction, a connection between you and the ocean, your board acting as some semi-conductor of magnetic and gravitational forces pulsing from the center the sprawling expanse of nature itself? Sounds a bit fluffy, huh? But stay with me on this.

Surfing is a Connection to the Beyond

What is surfing but a connection to something beyond our understanding? It’s this connection that's at the very core of the surfing experience. This connection is addictive, all-encompassing, and sometimes all-powerful. This connection enthralls many to forsake relationships, careers, and even their own health only to emerge ten years down the line, weather-beaten and alone with "only" memories of great waves and great times.

Surfing: the noble addiction

If you ask “What’s wrong with that?” Then you know where I am coming from. It all sounds tragic, but it is a noble addiction. Some risk their lives hurling themselves over precipices of liquid concrete into the guts of a 30-foot meat grinder with little fanfare but maybe a few hoots from the channel. Sure, there are praise and money in the surf industry abuzz with cameras, cash, and competition, but that only makes up such a small portion of the surfing experience that it’s hardly worth mentioning.

Surfing is Rider, Board, and Fluid

Real surfers don’t need a team or a game to test their mettle. In the real surfing world, there are simply rider, board, and a fluid, uneven, and predictably unpredictable playing field, an unfeeling surface ready to swallow you whole or spit you out in shreds onto the sand, or worse, lay dormant and leave you lost and dry among the landlocked masses who have no understanding of why you get up at dawn in the splitting cold for nothing more than mushy wind swell (Man! That was one insanely complex sentence). Heck, I doubt you even know why you surf. And that's what's so great about it.

Surfing the Mystery

Surfing is a mystery, but with enough romance to draw in droves of disciples. Some put in a season and then fade back into normalcy, unsatisfied with the high or all done mining the lifestyle of its image.

Others, however, get hooked in the best way. We are the lucky ones. We see surfing as a ticket to a place only the chosen get to see. A place where only fins keep us from taking flight, where a sixteen old and a fifty year old can understand each other’s passion, a place safe enough to send your daughter but just dangerous enough to keep your boss away.

If you haven’t tried surfing, go for it. Surfing might move you to the core or just touch you beautifully and leave. It is, however, better to have surfed and quit then never to have surfed at all.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.