Surfing with Debra Rose


New Year’s (Surfing) Resolutions

Debra Rose

Whether or not you buy into the ritual of crafting goals and resolutions for the New Year, it’s impossible to escape the chatter around it. Some creatively rebrand the practice as ‘setting intentions’ perhaps to sound non-committal and to not set oneself up for failure. Some shun the practice all together. Whatever time of year you celebrate your “New Year,’ there is something about the new date, the new decade and the start of a fresh calendar that warrants attention.

Maybe this year the ‘intentions’ can be about something fun, like Surfing, instead of doing more non-fun things and less of the indulgent ones (which inevitably recalibrate anyway in a few months). We asked our fellow surfers what some of their goals are for the year, and here is what we heard.

Travel: Finding a new surf spot, one they have read about but never surfed, saw in Surfer magazine, or watched during a contest or in a movie. Figuring out the dates and booking it is part of the fun.

Skills: Those still trying to nose ride without falling or surf bigger waves than they are comfortable with are making time to make progress, even if it is slight.

Gear: Surfers due for a new wetsuit or with a board in need of repair do not usually need to make goals around picking up the latest tools and accessories for their playtime Like all things in our daily lives, taking time to step back and access may reveal a few needed upgrades.

Patience: Not overly abundant in the line-up in Montauk, some surfers want to adjust their attitude in the water. Unfriendly? Hostile? A wave hog? Negative? Friends and surf buddies may not always give accurate feedback if at all, so some want to look within and see what can be adjusted.

Learn: Asking questions, observing others, paying more attention in general in the water is another inspirational goal we heard. We tend to get so caught up in our world and mission that we forget how much we can learn from those around us.

Connect: Surfers that park, paddle out, catch waves then leave want to make some changes. One of the beautiful things about the local Montauk surf community is the connection to one another. Seeing the same faces each session does not mean you actually know those around you. That can shift in an instant with a few words and a smile.

Dive in: An easy goal for a few surfers is to take time to watch more surf films, educating themselves on contests, locations, surfers and surf reports. Becoming more knowledgeable and immersed in something you love makes the activity that much more rewarding.

Share: Waves. Wax. Surf reports. Some surfers feel they are sharing these things already but maybe not enough. If you find yourself becoming too insular with your inner circle, it’s a good time to open it up.

Get involved: This was number one with every surfer. Beach clean ups are sporadic and organized on certain days, so many that cannot participate make a point to always have extra trash bags in the car. When checking the surf, or just going for a walk on the beach, it is astounding how much garbage you can remove on a simple morning mission of looking for waves. Every little bit makes a difference, and if there is one ‘intention’ to stick to, this is it. Happy New Year!