Skip to Content

What Does a Surfer Need? 11 Supplies to Get Started with Surfing

*This post may have affiliate links, which means I may receive commissions if you choose to purchase through links I provide (at no extra cost to you). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please read my disclaimer for additional details..

Perhaps you’re new to this thrilling sport and don’t know where to start. Surfing is an exciting sport, though it can also be expensive. The good news is, if you’re just starting out, you can rent, borrow, or buy second-hand equipment listed here!

Two Surfer

What gears do you need to start, anyway? Don’t worry, we’re going to tackle them in this article. These items will help make your surfing journey much easier.

Here is the list of surfing equipment you’ll need before going in the water and hitting the waves:

1. Surfboard

Obviously, you can’t surf without a surfboard. Longboard, shortboard, gun, funboard, fish – there are lots of surfboard types out there and you need to find out which one is the best for you. If you’re unsure, then might as well read the different types of surfboards.

As a beginner, choosing one might be overwhelming, so it’s best to seek advice from a professional, a surfer buddy, or someone at the surf shop to know which one is suited for you. 

Generally, the bigger the board, the better. Using foam board to start is also suggested because it won’t hit hard when you fall. To maximize the performance of your board, ask someone at the surf shop about the installation of surf fins.

2. Wetsuit / Surfwear

Surfwear are life savers – it protects you from the harsh UV rays, the salt, the board, and the impact of falling from your ride.

May it be a wetsuit, bathing suit, board shorts, or rash guards, make sure that it is of good-quality in order for them to serve their purposes. Invest in a good one since it will greatly save your precious body from the dangerous elements in the water.

When deciding for a wetsuit, make sure to choose the one that’s tight, but not too tight to the point that it’s uncomfortable.

3. Leash

A leash, also known as a leg rope, is a safety equipment that will help you and your surfboard stay connected at all times. Even if you wiped out and fell from your board, you wouldn’t need to worry about chasing after it.

The length of the leash will always depend on your board. Basically, the longer the board, the longer the leash, and the thicker the waves, the thicker the leash.

However, there are still other factors that you need to consider when choosing the leash for you, so make sure to do your research first before deciding on one.

4. Surf Wax or Traction Pad

As a beginner, the ride won’t be easy. It will be slippery, and that’s where the surf wax or traction pad comes in. These items will add texture to your surfboard, thus will keep you from falling.

Whichever you choose, they should be placed on the area where your feet are positioned during the ride.

A traction pad is a good investment when maintained well, usually lasting for years. But if you want that classic surfer image, then opt for the surf wax. Who doesn’t look cool when applying wax on the surfboard, anyway?

5. Surf Earplugs

If you don’t want to experience ear infections, clogged ear canals, and the terrifying surfer’s ear, then you need to wear an earplug.

The surfer’s ear is a painful condition in which a bone grows in your ear canal. This bone growth, called exostosis, can cause infection, discomfort, and even loss of hearing.

This occurrence that may lead to serious medical attention can be prevented by using a good-quality earplug, especially when you surf in cold water, so make sure to invest in a good one.

6. Sunscreen

You think you’re already protected with your wetsuit, however, there’s one more thing you’re missing – the sunscreen. 

Applying sunscreen has more benefits than you think of. It will protect you from the harmful sun rays. If you don’t know yet, prolonged exposure to the sun without protection such as sunscreen, will increase the formation of wrinkles, skin discoloration, dark spots, or worse, skin cancer.

The best way to use sunscreen is to apply it generously, and re-apply it every hour. However, the level of sun protection varies for every individual, so make sure to test which one is most applicable for you.

7. Surf watch

Regardless if you’re a novice or an expert, using a surf watch will greatly help you stay safe wherever you surf.

Some of the features of surf watches include the ability to track tides on specific surf spots, monitor the current weather, and even check water temperatures.

Any surf watch has its pros and cons, so make sure that you know what you’re buying. Some of the factors that you may need to consider are its features, durability, and water resistance.

8. Surf Travel Bag

If you are planning to travel locally or internationally because you want to try out different surfing spots, then a surf travel bag is your best friend. Choose one that is handy, and can endure long hours of travel.

It can be quite expensive, yes, but it will be extremely beneficial for travelling surfers. If you really don’t have the budget to buy a brand-new surf travel bag, there exists some online sellers who sell used bags.

9. Wetsuit accessories

Wetsuit won’t be enough if you’re surfing in a very cold climate, or when the winter comes in your area. Wetsuit accessories, such as boots, gloves, or surf cap can help your head and body stay warm when surfing in icy conditions.

10. Portable Surfing Shower

Aside from being inexpensive, a portable surfing shower has many benefits.

For cold water surfers, this item can provide you with warm water, giving you a pleasurable feeling after getting your head and body cold from surfing.

Another one is when you have important plans after a quick surf, a portable surfing shower will keep you clean and fresh, keeping that salt-water off from your body.

It has more benefits than you think of, so make sure to invest on one if you can.

11. Surf Poncho

Instead of the usual beach towels, surf poncho is a robe-like item that helps surfers easily dry-off themselves and change their outfit after surfing. It’s convenient, so consider having one.

Now that you have the list of 11 supplies to get you started with surfing, go ahead and visit your nearest surf shop and start your surfing journey now!

But of course, if you don’t want to break your bank, try borrowing some of these items to your friends, or consider renting one. 

As always, if you find this video helpful, don’t forget to share it with your family and friends!