Smaller surf is a relative term. Knee high and under I am not paddling out unless its a great knee high, really fun wave shape with decent rides yeah I will go. Knee high and mushy crap windswell, not suiting up for that.
But if i havent surfed in awhile do to live type stuff, career, fam, etc then if its a sunny day on a Saturday its knee high and sorta rideable, i may go then too.
Fun Stomach high surf in winter is great, hold downs are nothing, duck dives dont require going to deep. I love fun waist to stmach high on the right stick in winter