Was at Rodanthe, before or after a hurricane, can't recall that part of it. Took one look at the 8' shore pound & told my buddy, eh, I'm watching this one from the beach. Just then here come 3 early-20-somethings. 2 dudes & a gal, reeking of confidence, striding purposefully w their shortboards into that ocean.
Within 3 minutes, the gal had been absolutely hammered into the sand on her head, and was literally crawling up the beach for dry land. Her buds helped her stagger to her feet & half-carried her out of the water. When they stumbled past us on their way back towards the parking lot, she sure looked concussed to my eyes.
We watched the whole thing without saying a word, sat down & opened up the cooler. Maybe I learned a little bit over the years of poundings.
I see people paddling out at the wrong time a lot. At a break where the wave breaks on a sandbar then backs off before the shorebreak, the time to jump in and paddle your nuts off is when the first wave of a set starts to break on the outer bar. It will take you a few seconds to get through the shorebreak. Then you will be out of the shorebreak and in the dead zone when the set reaches you. That will give you maximum time to make it outside.
I got denied for the first time in a long time last month. One of those cold, windy NJ mornings, overhead and heaving barrels. When its that cold outside and the water is below 40 degrees, having to duckdive a short period swell gets old fast haha. Some days you are just meant to get worked, happens to the best of us...