Before you can catch a gust of wind and zoom across the lake, it’s important to learn a few safety tips. We know—you didn’t start reading up on a watersport to get bogged down in rules, but don’t worry! There are only a few things we need to tell you before you can start having fun. Read on to learn the essential windsurfing safety tips for beginners.
Bring a Buddy
The best-case scenario involves you taking a friend along whenever you windsurf. Even when the winds aren’t aggressive, things can go wrong. When you’ve got someone with you, they can hop in and help if something goes awry. But if you absolutely can’t bring a friend, make sure you tell someone where you’re going and when you plan to return.
Don’t Surf in the Dark
Visibility is too low at night to windsurf safely—just don’t do it! When you surf without an accurate understanding of your surroundings, you’re asking for trouble. Wait until the sun is up to enjoy the water—this goes for all watersports.
Learn Water Traffic Rules
You don’t need to take driver’s ed again, but you should learn a few important water traffic rules. For example, remember that the person who has the wind moving across the right side of their board—the starboard tack—has the right-of-way.
Wear the Right Gear
There are a few essential pieces of windsurfing equipment for beginners that go beyond the board and sail. You should wear proper attire to keep yourself comfortable and safe. While most surfers wear a wetsuit, the only thing that really matters about your clothing is that it’s easy to move in, insulating, and breathable. Other than that, you should take along a USCG-approved life vest with a whistle.
Now that you know these essential windsurfing safety tips for beginners, pick up some starting equipment and find a trainer. After a few lessons, you’ll get the hang of it, and you can enjoy all the fun windsurfing has to offer!