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Surfing 101: The Fundamentals

Surf lesson on the beach in Costa Rica.

Here at Pura Vida Adventures, we believe that anyone can learn to surf, and it all starts with the fundamentals. Learn to master the big three: the pop up, paddling, and surfing stance, and you’re well on your way to riding the waves of your dreams.

Our popular “How to Surf” YouTube series will guide you through each of these fundamentals, with videos on every key topic. Here’s a quick guide to the surfing fundamentals to get you started on this life-changing journey.

The Holy Grail of Surfing: The Pop Up

The pop up is the true foundation of good surfing, because how you take off into a wave will dictate your experience for its entirety.

It’s worth putting in some time, effort, and thought as you learn how to surf to make sure your pop up is the best it can be. Start here, with this essential video.

Do you have a “Jack in the Box” pop-up? Are your eyes, hands, knees, and front foot in the wrong position? Check out these common pop-up mistakes and learn how to fix them before they become a bad habit.

Paddling a Surfboard

It may not be the sexiest skill, but proper paddling is an absolutely integral part of good surfing that helps you navigate the lineup and catch waves.

From your position on the board, to digging deep into the water, to having a paddle face that’s up to par, follow these tips to be paddling like a pro even if you’re a beginner just learning how to surf.

Surfing Stance

Look good and feel good on your board while you learn how to surf. How you stand on your surfboard when you learn how to surf will really help you set the vibe of your surfing—and we want it to be awesome.

Above all, your surfing stance should be balanced and functional. Take a look at these examples of a sweet surfing stance and learn how to perfect yours.

Last but not least, look cooler and surf better by avoiding the dreaded poo stance. Learn all about this beginner mistake in this classic Pura Vida Adventures instructional video.

Surfing is a beautiful sport that opens new doors to adventure, fitness, community, and self-discovery. It’s also a challenge! As you continue to hone your skills, remember that patience and practice are key.

At Pura Vida Adventures, we’re here to support you on your entire surfing journey. Join is at our surf and yoga retreat in Costa Rica to take your surfing skills to another level with an entire week of personalized surf instruction!

Expert Surf Instruction at Our Costa Rica Retreat

From outstanding service to professional surf instruction to a beachfront luxury hotel to dancing under the moonlight, we are passionate about fostering our community and sharing in the fun and adventure of Costa Rica.

Reserve your spot at one of our upcoming retreats and join us for the experience of a lifetime.

We’re Giving Away a Surf Retreat!

We’ve partnered with Title Nine for a spectacular giveaway: a chance for one lucky lady to win a FREE trip for two to our stunning retreat in Costa Rica, valued at over $7,500! Don’t miss out on your chance to enter.

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