0 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Google+ 0 Pin It Share 0 LinkedIn 0 StumbleUpon 0 0 Flares ×

A version of this article first appear in our newsletter. To get the inside scoop on all Swell things, join our email list today! 

The Duck Dive

To make it out to the lineup and catch that blissful wave, you’ll first have to maneuver through the impact zone and white water. A good duck dive technique is hard to master, but with practice will get you outside the breaking waves faster.

The three elements of a great duck dive are proper timing, submerging your body and board, and resurfacing.

Practice on land and flat water to
perfect your duck dive technique.

1. Time Your Duck Dive

Properly timing your duck dive will make it easier to perform the maneuver. Paddle hard to gain momentum. Start your duck dive early enough to fully submerge your board and body before the wave comes. As a general tip, give yourself at least a boards length distance.

2. Submerge Your Surfboard

To sink your board, position your hands by your chest and grab onto the rails of your board. Push the nose of the board down, extending your arms. Just before the wave hits, bring one foot up to the tail of your board and use it to push the rest of the surfboard under the water. To sink your body, release your foot and bring your chest to the board. Think of the yoga transition between downward facing dog and cobra poses.

3. Resurface and Paddle Hard

At this point, you and your board are completely submerged. As the wave passes, point the nose of your board towards to surface of the water. Keeping the tail low and nose high will help you avoid popping up backwards. Start paddling again as soon as possible to get out of the impact zone faster.

A successful duck dive can mean the difference between getting beyond the impact zone or being pulled backwards with the passing wave. Practice this technique on shore and in flat water until you are comfortable with the motion.

What surfing tips do you have to share? What techniques would you like to read about? Leave us a comment below!