When you’re a passionate surfer and you’re lucky enough to surf whenever you want the circle is complete, well almost. But sometimes, no matter how much you love surfing, you just can’t surf that often… because you’re studying in a big city, or you have a great job away from the ocean, or you’re in love with someone who has a great job away from the ocean, or whatever other reason that is 100% acceptable and doesn’t stop you from being a passionate surfer. I know many of you will recognize themselves here, and I totally understand the trouble. I went through something like this myself a few years ago, stuck in a big city, struggling with tough studies, looking for any sign that would remind me of the ocean at every corner of the streets, counting the days that would bring me back on my board. But in the end with a few steps back I realized that it wasn’t so terrible and that you can totally love surfing without getting in the water every day, you appreciate even more every session when you only have a few! Here are a few advices to help you hold on!
Ditch everything and move on the coast
If surfing is all your life and you are really unhappy not being able to surf, then I can only encourage you to make all the necessary changes in order to have the life you dream of. Move to Bali, get transferred somewhere closer to the ocean, dump your boyfriend who doesn’t understand you and go live on the road in your van, no matter what, if it is the only condition to your happiness and fulfillment then go for it! But make sure you know what you’re signing up for, many did it before you and it can look dreamy on Instagram but sometimes reality isn’t as glamourous.
Grin and bear it
On the other hand, if your situation is temporary and necessary, like studies for example, there are many alternatives to help you bear with it. Organize little surf trips as often as possible, find surfer friends to share your frustration with, learn how to ride a skateboard and cruise through your town on your board, etc. Keep in mind that studies (or some job) only last for a while, and you will be so happy to have a job you love once graduated, you might even be living by the ocean, who knows!
Escape from time to time
For all the other situations, there are still weekends, Holidays, and… Instagram (#sorrynotsorry)! You have a great job in Paris and get super frustrated not to surf? Plan a surf trip in the middle of Winter to a tropical destination with perfect waves and get away to surf 6 hours a day while everyone is freezing in France (and those who live on the coast too!). Feeling a little down, missing the ocean? Why not go to Brittany for the weekend, to go surfing, try kitesurfing or eat salted caramel crepes in front of the ocean!
Train hard to play harder
Surfing can be really demanding sometimes, especially in Winter, and when you don’t surf often it can get really frustrating to not be able to fully enjoy your session because you tire yourself out quickly and lack training. If you can’t surf, you can still train for it and get prepared for those long-awaited sessions! Running, swimming, fitness, you have many options to stay in shape and get ready to fight strong currents, paddle through powerful waves or take your 30th wave without losing your arms!
Take a step back
Finally, don’t trust what you see on Instagram, some people’s life on the coast looks dreamy for sure, but sometimes the truth is really different. Tough employment market, very expensive real estate, total bursting of coastal towns in summer, etc. Not forgetting that living on the coast doesn’t mean surfing all day long, work and family obligations are the same as everywhere else, and it is not rare to miss a good session because of work or an appointment. Life on the coast is a very special lifestyle that might not suit everyone. Most activities significantly slow down during Winter, many businesses and housing are closed, giving an impression of a ghost town, when in summer the population reaches its bursting point and this overpopulation isn’t easy to deal with in your daily life (not mentioning the super crowded surf spots).
If those who live by the ocean often seems privileged, not everyone could or would live this life. No matter where life takes you, far from the ocean or just next to it, it shouldn’t stop you from loving to surf and get in the water whenever you can ;)
What about you, where do you live?
Photos : @remibedora
Wetsuits : @billabongwomenseurope – eu.billabong.com
Surfers : @lolitabrisson @surfragette @dori_kty
I’m 17 and I live right on the beach, but its in the UK and it never has any waves over 1 foot. Nearest beach is 7 hour drive but no one is willing to drive me lol. 1 more year and I’ll have my van
Just what I needed to hear as well.
I’m a kid. I love surfing and the ocean. But I live in a town close to Boston.
I think I needed to read this. Thank you.