My leash broke while getting worked over on a closeout last weekend sending my wrv longboard almost all the way to the beach. I was pretty far out and I have to admit that I was a little sketched out about about swimming back in through the rips to retrieve it so I asked a buddy to keep an eye on me - just in case. I can swim OK but you know. He gave me a lecture that I shouldn't be out if I'm afraid of drowning, which I probably deserved.
It got in my head about two things:
1. What's the best swimming training besides the pool, which I will do?
2. and what's the best leash to buy to prevent such things.
I know that even some of the best surfers don't go out alone in case something like that happens.
I had the Bully leash for about a year and some people tell me leashes should be replaced because of how the ocean breaks them down.
I know what your buddy is saying BUT! I don't think you were wrong in just asking him to keep an eye out for you. Even the most well seasoned swimmers get in trouble and even drown. The ocean is unpredictable. If I were to lose my board on a drifty day, i know my friends would be keeping their eye on me until i got my board or back to the beach.
Originally Posted by Yambo
But for surfing rules, besides the normal closest to the peak, don't drop in stuff is ALWAYS HELP OTHER SURFERS. Even if I don't know someone I always look out for them and make sure they make it in ok. If I am on the beach I get their board to them. If someone breaks a leash and I have a spare on me I lend it to them. Why? Because if anything bad happens to me I hope that there are people looking out for me in case...
People got to stop with the arrogance!
Oh and by the way, I normally surf with FCS comp leashes. They are not durable at all but do the trick in head high and smaller surf and don't get in the way. For bigger days i just use normal FCS leashes. They break all the time but that is just how it goes. Just stay cool and calm and go with the flow.
Yeah sorry but your buddy is a **** for lecturing you.
Make it your mission in life to become more comfortable in the water. Combine that with the basics of how to avoid the most turbulent water, be they rips, or impact zone. Finally, remember to put your feet down. If you are making no progress towards the beach, don't fight it, swim parallel to the beach towards breaking waves, not away from them. Rips are most prevelant in deep water where waves don't break.
1. aerobic training... swim, run, bike, eliptical... anything to get the heart rate up and keep it there. Swimming in the ocean, of course, is the best.
2. I like FCS and Dakine. I use comp leashes mostly, but a good big wave leash will take a good stretching and hang in there. If there's an argument for rinsing your board, it's to slow the inevitable deterioration of your leash... particularly the leash loop and swivel.
I like the "always help others" attitude. Growing up on boats and boards, it's just natural to me to think that way... second nature.
http://vimeo.com/48278457 Aussie board rescue technique
i saw that video posted over on the surfer mag BB & was amazed then at how horrible a technique it is! why would you A. put a NEAR DROWNING victim in a position where they'll take EVERY. SINGLE. WAVE. in the face?? B. put yourself in a position where you have to take your eyes off the victim?? what happens if they lose consciousness? start panicking? as a rescuer, you're screwed. i really thought aussie lifeguards had more sense than that...
Originally Posted by staystoked
to the OP: i agree w/ what everyone is saying about getting more comfortable in the water. swim, swim, swim...the more cardio you do, the better! leash breakage happens, & not always at the most opportune moment. you should be prepared to swim for your board at any moment. i think a lot of people forget that the leash is a convenience, not a safety device.
that said, i've had the best luck w/ creatures of leisure leashes. never broken a single one of them, though i have seen it happen. i have one 6' comp leash that i bought back in 2008 that's gotta be pushing 7' by now...countless trips to hatteras, a trip to panama, up & down the nj coast, this thing's seen it all.
I surfed without a leash saturday and sunday. It broke and I was lazy. I got caught in a rip saturday and I got a little sketched. I swam out of it and was fine. My only advice is never panic and manage your anxiety. The cool thing was that the board got caught in the same rip so as I was swimming to the shore it was on its way to me.
How good of a buddy is he? Any good friend would want to make sure his buddy is ok, especially in bigger surf. I have had my leash break before, and chasing down a board while 3-5 OH set waves are crashing down on your head is no fun.
I think what your buddy was trying to tell you is that if you are so uncomfortable in the water, you need to get yourself to a point where that fear goes away. Like other said, conditioning and experience.