Writer, Filmmaker, Student
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Whether it’s a lack of waves or a surplus of crowds, everyone can get stuck in a surf funk. Here’s a guide to staying stoked. Photo: Kaelen McCracken

The Inertia

Us surfers play a dangerous game of placing our happiness at the mercy of weather patterns. We try to be patient, but it’s a gamble with a high degree of uncertainty. Perhaps a flat spell left you itching for waves, or you’ve had one too many frustrating sessions in a row, or you just haven’t felt motivated to paddle out. Whatever it is, surfing’s lost its jazz, and now you’re in a surf funk. Here are some tips to channel your inner grom, fuel your froth, and keep your stoke levels high.

Ride Different Boards

Try something completely different from what you usually ride. Borrow a friend’s board. Heck, even try a finless. For guaranteed laughs tandem on a bigger board with a friend. Even a small adjustment of changing your fins on a particular board can give you a whole new sensation. It’s all about making the game feel fresh. Don’t get sucked in to riding the same board at the same spot everyday. 

Surf a New Spot 


Spark that light of discovery by riding a wave you’ve never surfed before. Figuring out the bathymetry and mechanics of a foreign wave is often humbling and exciting. Learning the intricacies of sections on a new wave ultimately proves gratifying and fulfilling. 

Find Other Ways to Enjoy the Ocean

A big part of refueling your stoke is also refueling your love for the ocean. Go bodysurf, bodyboard, and get slammed in the sand. Find that child-like pureness of playing in the waves. Try sailing, or kayaking, or fishing. There are countless ways the ocean can be a source of happiness apart from surfing.

Change Your Mindset

Focus on feeling satisfied and grateful with a few waves. Express gratitude for the privilege of being able to enjoy the ocean. Sometimes it can feel colossally overwhelming when the waves are good and you feel pressured to be on. Don’t get caught up in the competitive frenzy, and don’t put pressure on yourself to surf well. Don’t take surfing too seriously. Reflect back on the reasons why you surf to reconnect with your inner grom. 


Take a Break From Surf Media

Surf media can be both inspiring and discouraging (we do our best here at The Inertia). If your social media is saturated with surf media and you’re constantly exposed to clips of other spots of the world going off amidst 1-2-foot slop at your local break, it might be healthy to step away from surf media for a bit. 

Plan a Surf Trip

This is a guaranteed way to get stoked. What’s better than exploring a new place with friends, and having no obligations besides surfing? Researching and planning a trip will give you something to look forward to. Whether it’s a short road trip up the coast, or somewhere across the world, surfing new waves and discovering foreign places with friends is a guaranteed way to keep you stoked.


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