Eco Surfing Tips – How to Practice Sustainable Surfing

by Candice Boyers

Surfing is undoubtedly one of the most exciting sports you can take up when living by the seaside. Waiting for that perfect wave can make you feel connected to nature in a way not many people can actually experience. This is probably why many professional surfers are also advocates for implementing environmentally-friendly solutions.

Practicing sustainable surfing may sound like something that requires a lot of effort and time put into it. However, if you start from the ground up and choose the right surfboard, buy a plant-based wetsuit, and get an eco-friendly wax block – then you’re on the right track. 

On top of that, you can opt for sustainable means of transportation, take part in beach clean-ups, and more!

Reef-safe sunscreen is another great way to be intentional with the environment. Browse our guide of reef-safe sunscreens here!

If you want to go surfing, there’s no reason not to do it the environmentally-friendly way. So if you want to practice sustainable surfing, this article is for you. Let’s explore how you can help preserve the natural beauty of marine life and coastal ecosystems!

* Just to let you know that this article may contain affiliate links. If you click on them we might receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you.

surfing in bali


Travel Using Alternative Means

Not everyone is lucky enough to live next to their favorite surfing spot, which makes surfers have to travel a lot just to practice their favorite sport. As you have to carry some equipment with you, picking a car is an obvious choice. 

However, it may not be the most eco-friendly option that you can take. The good news is that you can always choose to travel using alternative means of transportation, such as a bike or a train.

If you are a fan of cycling, find out the best mountain bikes under 3000 dollars and see which one fits your needs the best. Other than that, consider getting a bike rack that can hold your board safely. This way, you’ll avoid the need to use a car, and you’ll be able to engage in a sport that keeps you fit at the same time.

Looking for the perfect surf rack? Check out our surfboard rack options here!

Choose the Right Surfboard

There are a lot of materials used in surfboards, and you need to be careful about which one you choose. Most surfboards are made of fiberglass and resin, which, although relatively durable and affordable, are not very environmentally friendly. 

A more sustainable option is to go for a bamboo surfboard, which is made of organic material and is 100% biodegradable. In addition, bamboo surfboards are lighter than fiberglass ones, and they’re also stronger and more flexible.

If you want to go even greener, you can opt for a cork surfboard, which is also biodegradable. The only disadvantage of cork is that it’s somewhat heavier than bamboo, but the main advantage is that the material can be harvested sustainably.

Make sure that you protect your surfboard when going between destinations. Check out some of the best surfboard travel bags in our guide here. 

sustainable surfer

Get a Plant-Based Wetsuit

Did you know that you can get a plant-based wetsuit made from renewable materials? If you want to practice sustainable surfing, you should also purchase a plant-based wetsuit. The most common material used in wetsuits is neoprene, which is not only made of synthetic material but also contains chemicals that are hazardous to marine life.

A plant-based wetsuit is a wetsuit made of a fibrous material derived from plants, such as hemp and flax. It’s not only biodegradable, but it also provides optimal thermal insulation and water resistance, as well as optimal flexibility.

Get an Eco-Friendly Wax Block

Surfing is a sport that requires you to use a lot of wax to help your board stay in the water. The most common form of wax, also found in candles, is paraffin. It is a petroleum-based material that can have harmful effects on marine life. A more sustainable option is to go for a plant-based wax block made of beeswax.

Start your search for eco-friendly surf wax here.

If you have the time, you can make your own eco-friendly wax at home. All you need to do is mix the ingredients, pour them into a mold, and wait for them to cool down. By doing this, you know that the wax you use won’t harm a single marine animal.

Need a revision class on the best way to wax your surfboard? Check out our blog here!

walking in keramas

Participate in Beach Clean-Ups

You’re probably aware that marine life is affected by the amount of trash that ends up in the oceans. No matter how careful you are, there’s always a chance you’ll lose your board or some other item in the water. The good news is that you can do your part in cleaning up the ocean by volunteering to practice beach clean-ups.

One of the most common forms of pollution on beaches is cigarette butts, which are considered not only an eyesore but also have harmful effects on marine life. By picking a few cigarette butts from the beach, you’re doing your part in keeping the aquatic fauna and flora safe. And remember that you can help by not littering in the first place – it may seem obvious, but it is something that many people tend to forget.

Be a Good Example for Others

If you want to practice sustainable surfing, why not be a good example for others and go beyond just sustainable surfing? 

You should live your life in a way that is sustainable and eco-friendly. For example, if you buy food, you should go for organic, pesticide-free options. If you cook at home, you can opt for products that come in biodegradable packagings, such as bamboo and rice husk. You can also go for reusable water bottles and cut down on the use of plastic in your household by using containers made of glass to store food.

beach bums

In Conclusion

To sum up, practicing sustainable surfing is not as difficult as it might seem. It will require you to put in a few extra minutes, but it is definitely worth it! For example, you can start with the surfboard you pick, as it’s an essential piece of equipment that should be durable, flexible, and lightweight. You can go for a bamboo surfboard or a cork surfboard.

You should also opt for a plant-based wetsuit, prepare your own natural wax and even take a train or ride a bike instead of using a car while traveling to your favorite surfing spot. In the end, you’ll see that making sustainable choices is not that difficult. And you’ll certainly feel better about yourself for doing your part in preserving the environment!

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