by Michelle Michalak November 21, 2017

Dalton Smith from NPI Productions talks about how to bodysurf at beach break using your Slyde Handboard.

There's tons of different ways around the world and the footage (see video at bottom) I'm gonna be showing you is from a very special secret spot in Puerto Rico. If you've seen our video you can actually see some surfing footage from there and it's absolutely unreal.

The day that we went out was pretty dangerous, I guess you would say, if you're actually trying to go surfing. Instead we decided to go charge on the handplanes.  In this spot in particular, break is not even 20 feet off of the shore. 

How To Get Out To The Waves

The first thing that we're gonna talk about is getting out. It's really important that you wait for a break in the set, because with any kind of surfing if you paddle out mid-set you're just gonna be drilled. I will almost always tighten down my handboard straps a little bit more than I usually do, same thing with the leash on my arms because you are going be getting yanked around pretty good.

Where To Position Yourself In The Wave

Positioning at a beach break is super important. At this beach, the waves come in at deep water and you see it jacking up. But when it hits that shallow water it just fires and dumps. Beach breaks is where a nice set of fins is going help you most and it's really important to have them because if you take off to late on a beach break you're gonna get hung up with the lip and just thrown over.

If you're not paddling hard enough, you're never gonna catch the waves. And, again, if you're too far in front of it the wave is just gonna toss you and you're not gonna get barreled.
 

How To Paddle

When you paddle we tell people all the time, "Make sure your hands are closed, man." When I first learned to surf, one of the first things I learned is don't paddle like this. Paddle with your hands closed. The tighter your hands are the less amount of water is gonna come between your fingers, more traction, faster speed, more waves.


When you're paddling you need to be kicking and paddling your life away. You're going down a pretty much vertical face. On almost half of these waves we're taking off so late. It's just a free fall. Bodysurfing is a lot like surfing, it's all about speed and maintaining speed when you need it.
 

How To Position Your Body

When you make that bottom turn, you wanna make sure that you lean into the barrel and don't lose all your speed because if you do you're just gonna get sucked and thrown over. I'll actually push down on my board and lift myself up out of the water.  It will give you more push and less drag on my body, read the waves.

You have to know what wave is gonna do what. I mean, I've been in the water for 12 years and they're still those sets that come through and I get completely lit up.  Remember it takes lots of practice, paddle hard, commit and be safe guys. It is super fun to surf a beach break but like I said, you are going to get drilled in the sand. It's gonna let you understand how powerful the ocean really is.

WATCH THE EPIC VERSION OF THIS SESSION BELOW:


Michelle Michalak
Michelle Michalak

Michelle's diploma reads BA Psychology with a minor in English, and her license plate reads #CaliforniaDreaming4Life. She begin her career in the NYC fashion industry working with fashion and internet pioneer, Bluefly.com However, due the constant "nagging" of her entrepreneurial spirit, her crush on surfing, and hardcore love for the ocean, she chosen to call San Diego home for the past 10 years. On the west coast she 's chased waves & enlightenment working alongside "Gurus" in the online marketing & personal development industries. It in May 2012 she found her true Zen & Stoke, and joined the Slyde Handboards Team.


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