May 19, 2022 8 min read

There are several reasons why surfing is dangerous. Here are a few: shark attacks, collisions with other surfers' boards, environmental pollution, and addiction. Surfing is not for the faint-hearted when it comes to sports. There is an extreme risk of drowning in big waves. In addition, the ocean can be a dangerous place to be, especially for those who are inexperienced with surfboards. Nonetheless, it is an essential part of the surfing lifestyle. If you're considering it, consider these factors in our guide when making your decision to be a big wave surfer. So, how dangerous is surfing?

The Dangers While You Surf - Shark Attacks on the Surfer

Sharks are dangerous creatures. The majority of them mistake humans for seals. These attacks happen when sharks circle a victim before inflicting deadly wounds. Thankfully, many shark attacks are not fatal. In fact, many people get bitten by sharks, and these attacks are usually the result of misjudgment or mistaken identity. However, you should never surf alone in a shark-infested area.
The chances of getting attacked by a shark are extremely low, but there is always a risk.

The odds of being attacked by a shark are incredibly low compared to 1950, so you should always use caution when playing in this wild environment. For example, it's best to surf in groups and avoid the farthest parts of the lineup. Remember that sharks tend to feed near river mouths, which can be dangerous for surfers.

Although sharks are generally harmless in shallow waters, their behavior can be unpredictable. As with any predator, sharks are most likely to attack a lone person in a dark and low-lit area. In addition, you should stay away from the water during shark hunting hours and from areas that have a high concentration of seals. You should also try to surf with other surfers so that you can be sure that the shark will not attack you alone.

While the number of fatal shark attacks is relatively small, they do happen. Surfers on the west coast of the United States alone has two deadly shark attacks in the last decade. Sharks prefer other animals, such as seals and sea lions, but most shark attacks are mistaken identity. The surfer is expected to recover, and the rescue operation was a success. The surfer was airlifted to a hospital in Perth for treatment.

A shark's reaction to a human in the water is a natural reflex. It can mistake a human for its natural food and attack the surfer. Shark attacks are usually close to shore and on sandbars where sharks can easily find prey. Divers who are diving in a steep drop-off are also prone to attacks by sharks. If you see a shark, leave the water immediately.

Collisions With Other Surfers’ Boards When Surfing

One of the most common types of surfer collisions is called a "drop-in." When a surfer drops into a wave, they are not expecting the other surfer to follow. They are more likely to drop in a small peak, like a left-hander, and this can lead to a dangerous knee-jerk reaction. Another common type of collision is called a "snake."

New surfers have little control over where they are going, making them more likely to run into others, including experienced surfers. They also tend to fall unexpectedly, so they may accidentally run into another new surfer or another experienced surfer. And because the ocean is unpredictable, collisions with other surfers' boards are especially dangerous. The ocean's magnetism can lead to nasty injuries. However, surfing is becoming more popular every year, and there are millions of people worldwide who have taken up this challenging sport.
There are several ways to avoid a collision. First, new surfers should leave their board whenever another surfer is about to hit them. If they do not get out of the way, they will likely be hit and damage their surfboard. In addition to that, they risk getting a cut or worse if they hit someone. Furthermore, a collision with another surfer can cause severe damage to your surfboard and your pride. So, try to avoid collisions as much as possible and surf smart.

Other risks of surfing collisions include disorientation, brain injury, and even death. The most common injuries are lacerations and head trauma. However, if you crash into someone, you could also break your board or even break a bone. The damage to your board and your body could make it impossible to get back up, and you may even lose it altogether. Finally, if you hit the bottom of the ocean, you may drown or break a bone.

Environmental Pollution from Big Waves When Surfing

Despite the increased danger and the risks of surfing, surfers self-identify as ecologically progressive and socially active. These beliefs are reflected in main popular surf culture representations. However, a closer look at the respondents' lifestyles and activities shows that their attitudes and behaviors are inconsistent with their self-described, environmentally progressive ideologies. Surfers are often seen as progressive, but their actions don't match up with their environmental goals.

The average surfer's activities are responsible for a wide range of environmental hazards. The average surfer walks through the sand to the beach, then paddles into the ocean. Once in the water, they await for the waves shaped by nature. However, they do so with non-biodegradable, toxic, and petroleum-based materials. The average surfer also uses gas to reach the beach, a plastic surfboard with a plastic leash, and sunblock that harms corals.

dangerous surfing

Polluted runoff is carried to the beach from nearby bodies of water. It may contain harmful pathogens and chemicals. Untreated sewage is also a major source of pollution. Runoff from farms can also pollute local waterways.

Even worse, humans contribute to pollution by leaving trash, animal waste, and unused sunscreen on public beaches. It is no wonder why so many surfers are concerned about surfing's impact on the environment.

Despite the risks associated with waterborne diseases, cold water surfing is not necessarily dangerous when it rains. However, surfers should be careful of acid rain, which comes from terra firma. The same applies to swimming in the ocean after a heavy downpour. Increased urban drainage also transports pollutants into water channels, where they eventually reach the sea.

These pollutants can also pollute beaches and surf breakers. Also, the rain causes more surface water to accumulate, meaning that more contaminated water will reach the sea.

Addiction to Surfing

For some people, extreme water sports and surfing are the ultimate high. Some people like to buy new surfboard for every season and some are using the same one always. Some surfers like to experiment with different surfboard sizes, and different surfboard types, for example regular surfboards and cool foam surfboards. It's all up to surfer. 

While it's extremely dangerous, it also gives you a natural rush. It releases endorphins, the neurochemicals responsible for our feeling good and giving us a sense of well-being.

Surfing releases these chemicals into our bodies, which results in a euphoric reaction. The brain releases endorphins when we get an unexpected reward, such as riding a wave. Another common symptom of addiction to surfing is increased medical bills. Surfing often leaves athletes with high medical bills, and these bills can cause extreme stress. To help reduce the financial stress that can wreak havoc on an athlete's budget, injured surfers can negotiate payment plans with their medical providers. They should also keep in touch with their medical providers. This way, they can make sure they receive the care they need.

Many people with an addiction to surfing are constantly checking tide charts and weather forecasts. They are constantly looking for waves and trying to increase the intensity of the thrill. They also find it impossible to leave the beach at the end of the day because they want to go surfing later. They miss out on social occasions and social events. When the surf becomes a full-time addiction, people who surf will neglect other aspects of their lives. For example, they may ignore friends or family because they are too stressed to go out for drinks.
The internet has made information easily available and allows people to connect with people from all over the world. But it also presents a danger for those who suffer from addiction. It can lead to increased financial costs and reduced productivity at work. Furthermore, surfing can lead to a number of other issues, such as cybersex and overspending. It can also ruin real-life relationships of surfers because it's difficult to break free of addiction without the support of family and friends.

The idea that surfing can be addictive is not new. The concept has been studied extensively in the field of addictive behaviors. Alan Marlatt, a clinical psychologist who worked in the field for decades, pioneered the concept. His research focused on brief interventions and relapse prevention. His work was supported by several prestigious organizations. And the concept has been widely adopted by others. As a result, there is a growing understanding of surfing's dangers.

surfer on waves

Conclusion

Surfing is a popular water sport that people of all ages enjoy. While it may seem like a harmless activity, there are a few dangers that surfers should be aware of. The first danger is the risk of drowning. Even strong swimmers can get caught in a rip current and pulled out to sea. Another danger is the possibility of hitting your head on the board or on a wave. This can lead to concussions or even more serious injuries.

Finally, surfers are at risk of getting sunburned or dehydrated from spending too much time in the sun and salt water. By taking a few precautions, such as wearing a life jacket and sunscreen, surfers can minimize their risks.

FAQ

Why is it dangerous to surf on big waves?

Big waves can be incredibly dangerous for surfers. Not only can the waves knock them around and cause them to hit their head on the water, but the undercurrent can pull them under and make it difficult to swim back to the surface. Additionally, big waves can create rip currents, which can quickly pull a swimmer out to sea.

Is surfing the most dangerous sport?

There is no denying that surfing is an extreme sport with inherent risks. But is it the most dangerous sport out there? While there is no definitive answer, there are certainly plenty of factors to consider. For one, surfing involves being in close proximity to large bodies of water, which can be very dangerous in and of itself. Additionally, surfers are often at the mercy of the elements, including strong currents, waves, and winds. All of these factors can combine to create a very dangerous situation for those who are not prepared.

surfer in dangerous sea

Is surfing dangerous for beginners?

Yes, surfing can be dangerous for beginners. The sport requires quick reflexes and strong swimming skills, both of which can take time to develop.

Additionally, the waves can be unpredictable and powerful, making it easy for beginners to get caught off guard. However, with proper instruction and a healthy respect for the ocean, beginners can safely enjoy the sport of surfing.

What injuries can you get from surfing?

Surfing is a great way to enjoy the outdoors and the waves, but it is important to be aware of the potential injuries that can occur. The most common surfing injuries are cuts and scrapes from the surfboard, but more serious injuries can also occur. Head injuries, spinal injuries, and broken bones are all possible if you fall off your board and hit the water incorrectly. It is important to always wear a life jacket and to never surf alone. Be sure to obey all posted signs and rules when surfing, and always use caution.

What should you not do while surfing?

Surfing is a fun and challenging sport that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. However, there are a few things that you should not do while surfing. First, you should never paddle out into the waves without a surfboard. Second, you should never try to stand up on a wave without first paddling into it. Third, you should never try to surf near rocks or other hazards. Finally, you should always be aware of your surroundings and be cautious of other surfers.

Author - Olivia Poglianich
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Olivia Poglianich          

Content Strategist

Olivia Poglianich is a nomadic brand strategist and copywriter in the surf, watersports and outdoor adventure space who has worked with brands such as Visa, Disney and Grey Goose. Her writing has taken her all over the world, from a Serbian music festival to a Malaysian art and culture event. Olivia is a graduate of Cornell University and is often writing or reading about travel, hospitality, the start-up ecosystem or career coaching. Her latest interests are at the intersection of web3 and communal living, both on and offline.



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