Cori and I made a trip to Cocoa Beach over the weekend. Last summer we were stationed at Patrick Air Force Base, just a few miles south of Cocoa, and we spent a few days every week at the beach–it was great. So this past Saturday we trekked to one of the known locations for surfing, though between the two of us the preferred method for wave-riding differs. Cori is a long time surfer, with a 7 foot fun-shape that she got as a birthday gift a few years back. Me, on the other hand, well not so much. I’ve tried surfing before and the best I usually get is riding the wave while laying flat on the board. Which is essentially the same as bodyboarding (or Boogie boarding).
Surfing carries a certain coolness, like riding a Harley or knowing how to moonwalk. And it looks like fun, when the waves are actually decent and when you can actually stand up for long enough to control the board, but I think the superior way to ride the waves in Florida is via the tried and true bodyboard. Cori and I have had this conversation a few times, and in the end I am never convinced that surfing is more fun than bodyboarding. Here are my top three reasons why Boogie boarding is far and away superior to surfing.
- Bodyboarding is easier–you don’t have to wait on the perfect wave, you don’t have to worry about paddling out (which is the worst part of surfing if you go when the waves are even a little choppy), and you don’t have to worry about the wave tumbling you if you fall off (usually).
- Bodyboarding is more practical–when you want to go surfing in Florida, there are only a handful of days a year when you can do so in the Gulf, so realistically you’ve got to drive to somewhere on the eastern coast. Our favorite spot is Cocoa Beach based on the proximity to Cori’s grandparents in Orlando, so that means it’s never just a day trip to go surfing. And it also means some delicate packing must be done in order to get the surf board into the car. With a bodyboard none of this is a serious concern. You can catch waves in the Gulf, and if you do want to go on a longer drive to get to the beach, the Boogie board fits easily in the trunk, the back seat, in the floor behind the driver seat, on the rear dash panel…
- Surfing kills–seriously, how often can you recall hearing about shark attacks in New Smyrna Beach or other places? And how often are those shark attacks on surfers? Have you ever heard of a shark attacking someone on a bodyboard? Nuff’ said. :)
So those are my reasons, but I’d love to hear from anyone who has additional reasons, or wants to rebut my points.