Rockaway Beach: no bodyboarding | Photo: New York District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

New York City has banned bodyboarding in all public beaches.

The New York City Parks Department has issued a ban on boogie boards. Anyone trying to enter the water with a bodyboard will face penalties.

The unprecedented decision was taken by Jill Weber, administrator at the Parks Department Rockaways. Apparently, the bodyboarding ban is on since two kids got swept out around Beach 33r with their boards, during tropical storm Bertha.

"This is absurd, I've been doing the sport for 20 years, going to different beaches around the world, and I can't believe I can't even do it where I live," local bodyboarder Jose De la Rosa tells Gothamist.

The ban applies to all "flotation devices." The New York City Parks Department has underlined that boogie boards may only be allowed "in open sections of beaches through Labor Day, as long as they do not create an unsafe condition."

New York City has a dark history involving surfers and wave riders. Until 2005, surfing was considered to be an illegal outdoor activity in local beaches. Now, boardsports seem to return to the underground world.

The Rockaway Beach Surfers Association will be protesting against the ban.

Update (20th August 2014):

The New York City Parks Department changed its mind: "Boogie boards will be allowed in open sections of beaches through Labor Day, as long as they do not create an unsafe condition. As always, beachgoers are prohibited from entering the water at any closed sections of the beaches. We will review the use of boogie boards at our beaches after the summer."