Surf lineup: everyone wants their share of waves | Photo: Shutterstock

Crowded lineups often generate tense vibes at the peak. Here's what everyone should avoid doing on a busy surf break.

The lineup is the area where waves break - the so-called take-off zone.

Therefore, it is the place where the majority of surfers wait for their treasures, sitting on their surfboards and looking out to the horizon.

When we're lined up waiting for our turn, we must remember that we're not alone, and everyone around us is near for the same reason - to catch the most and the best waves.

They're not our enemies, and they're not our opponents. They're people like us with virtues and defects. In a perfect world, we would share waves between us and have fun on the same rides.

But that's not what happens in the world's most frequented surf breaks.

Throughout the decades, the surfing community established a set of informal and unofficial rules - or code of conduct - that tries to keep the act of riding waves safe for everyone.

However, as you might have noticed several times, surf etiquette has its holes and is seldom the subject of misinterpretations.

The source of problems is always clear: greed.

Surf lineup: don't hassle for waves, and don't drop in | Photo: Shutterstock

From a statistical perspective, it is clear that cool and healthy vibes lead to more waves ridden.

Many times, surfers who aggressively fight for waves tend to let many waves go unridden. The same rule applies to very strict interpretations of priorities.

Conflicts will always destroy your surfing experience. Be a gentleman in the water. Surfing is not a battle. Don't do the following on your home break:


Don't back paddle - that's one of the most disrespectful actions in surfing.

You're not smart; you're a prick, and sooner or later, you will be paid back in your own coin.


Don't compete and hustle for waves as if it's the most important thing in the world.

Let others breathe and enjoy the pleasures of surfing - don't be that constant shadow who sits two yards away from other fellow wave riders.

Yelling and Screaming

The ocean is a place of peace and retreat.

Don't be the primitive alpha male or female who is always showing off or teaching others to surf by vociferating their advice and orders aloud.

Dropping In

Just because you're older, experienced, or a local surfer, you don't have the right to all waves in the ocean.

A champion surfer is more than a skilled waterman or waterwoman - integrity and humility are what make us admirable sportsmen and sportswomen.

Kicking Your Feet Wildly

If you need extra leg power to catch a small wave on a shortboard, kick your feet gently, and keep in mind that there are people around you who will only have a shower after their session ends.

Ditching The Surfboard

Some surfers still think it's cool to ditch the surfboard when their ride ends - it's not.

And it can be really dangerous, especially if the nose of the board hits someone in the face;

Top Stories

The first-ever pro tour wave pool contest was held at Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

A wipeout changed Jack Johnson's life. Here's how the young man who once dreamed of becoming a pro surfer went on to sell over 25 million album copies.

It's quite a paradox, but summer in the Northern Hemisphere really is surfing's silly season.

Long are the days when surfing was the sport of riding ocean waves. Today, it's more than that - it's about choosing one of the many ways to ride a wave.