My girlfriend sucks at and hates surfing

…so I decided to make her a board that she can’t not surf.  It’s going to be the most basic board ever.  I’ve taken her out a couple of times before, but whether it’s a long board, funboard, or fish, she can’t surf, and she hates it.  She’s probably the least gifted surfer I have ever seen.  Granted, we live in Washington state, USA, but those who surf cold water understand that it’s worth it.  I need to show her the light.  I don’t care if she can’t carry it, if it won’t turn, if it doesn’t paddle, as long as it catches waves and she can stand up on it. So here’s what I’ve come up with:

[img_assist|nid=1048971|title=Brie's board|desc=|link=none|align=center|width=58|height=100]

All I hope is that she can ride the whitewater straight toward the beach.  I’ve thinned out the tail so it doesn’t lift and cause her to pearl, which she has a knack for, and I’ve flipped the nose for the same reason.  Aggressive V out the nose to smooth out chop, and super wide for training wheels.  Long, parallel rails for tracking, and single with sidebites for stability.

I’m hoping for any input that would make surfing easier for her, as it’s become a strain on our relationship.  She’s 5’4" and 120lbs, and otherwise athletic, but not in this case. Thanks!

oh, man, a hand posting pics would be nice…

Lol! Good on ya man!! I got my gfriend to have a go on a Swell (foam board) last year a few times. The first time the waves were knee high...that was fun for her. The second time.... not so much....something about too many jellyfish in the sea and the HUGE waist high waves. So I gave I can tell she hates it..she flinches in disgust when my face drains all the water onto the floor....and she percieves sand in the shower as dirt (have no water hose in the garden)  :(

I had the same problem with my girlfriend, until I bought her a  she can paddle out in every condition and catches more waves than I do and didn't even take her long time to learn.

don’t push it bro.

you need someone on the beach to take pictures and watch your stuff.

you’re also going to need someone on the beach to babysit your kids…

I think you’ve failed to recognize the benefits of a non-surfing mate.

afoaf speaks from experience...

also, find out what she likes and encourage her to do IT as much as possible whatever IT is.

get involved in IT, take interest, keep your eyes open for things that you come across about IT,

offer to take the kids / kid / dogs, or whatever so that she can go do IT. basically, everything

that you would want her to do about your surfing... it's a revolving door. my wife doesn't surf at all

but knows basic surfboard design, surfing history, and etiquette better than my brother who surfs.

and, i know all about crafting, the various tools, techniques, and materials. i bought / modified a desk

to house her addiction with a work area, etc... the amount of interest and energy that you put into her

and her IT, will be reciprocated... you can thank me later.


ditch the side bite's

they will make the tail jump around in the white wash

I agree with ChrisP and afoaf… but an excuse to make another board is always good, just dont do any ugly pink paint jobs cause you are going to surf it a lot more than her.

dump her find a woman who has a brother or father that she has a good relationship with who is a dedicated surfer. One more person in the water is the last thing this world needs. I have seen people try to do this. Surfing was in your life long before her and will be there long after she is gone.

Ethan,  Your girlfriend dosn't need to see the light ! You need to see the light !!! The water in washington is FFFFn cold!!! Even sitting on the beach is no fun! She will never like surfing and you will never win here over! Your relationship is strained and will only get worse!! Its her or surfing, Which do you want. Lets face it relationships with women and surfing just don't go well together. Even in hawaii  where the water is warm it dose not work. There are very few surfing couples. You want to go surf and she wants to go shoping at the mall. My wife thought surfing was great after we got married it changed. In my case before we got married I made it clear that if I have to choose between my water time and being married, The water time was first.!!!  The first time we argued about me getting up and going surfing before dawn and comeing home after dark I put her suit case in the middle of the kitchen floor and told her not to let the door hit her in the ass!! She doesn't screw with the surfing issue anymore !!!! We don't have the best relationship !!! She does her thing and I do mine !!!!

I too agree w/ afoaf and chris. My wife likes to sit on the beach and read or take pics.Tried surfing…not her thing.

As far as her IT is concerned, she works out. When she started hitting the gym hard I sent her out to get all the necessary clothes/gear she needed and completely support her. I’ll stay home Sat morning w/ the kids while she works out and Sun I surf…it’s a trade off (days vary depending on the swell and she knows this). I support her bigtime and like ChrisP said…it’s a revolving door.

Lot’s of valid information here young apprentice.

I’ve had a bit of it all.

My current “girl friend” of over six years, “gets” it.  I took her out to body surf in the islands, told her, when she asked, “Oh, you’ll hit bottom, so tuck your head down, and put your arms over your head and face like this…  It’s only sand, but still.”  Well, she forgot to “tuck and cover,” and broke her nose…  She’s been a little freaked out even to try body surfing again… Not that any of that makes any difference to me.  What she “gets” is - I love surfing more than most anything, and when it’s good… I know she, my kids, parents, work, what ever… will be there when I’m done surfing, and she knows it is good for me.  She encourages me to surf, take surf trips, build boards, etc…  

Plus - You need to consider what you want from your own surfing:  Do you want to stay out as long as you can/want?  Surf where you want?  Those are just a couple that immediately come to mind.  What if you want to “charge the point,” and she’s not even stoked up on the beach break near by?  Good luck with all that. 

I had a girlfriend, and my current one use to say the same type of thing, who would get bugged out - Granted this was snow related, but the same thing holds true - and say I “should just be with a hot snowboard chick…”  I’d say, as I’ve said about surfing, "Why?  So I can feel like I have to worry about what someone else’s trip is, when all I want to do go like I want to go (Fill in you choice of the day: Huck a cliff, tree pow, rocky reef, long hike trespassing access to remote point(Granted - the none participating party my be cool for the hike and stuff.)

Anyway - If a good old long board didn’t work, don’t bother unless you want the board for yourself.  It’s a balancing act - and from you end, you have to decide what you feel like you can concede for the sake of the relationship.  To be sure, surf time is a very, very precious commodity. 

As I over heard in the water 20 years ago in Newport CA, @ 36th St… Dawn patrol. I was married at the time. 

Guy one, “Where’s so and so?  I never see him around anymore.”

Guy two,  “When I called him this morning he said he was going out to breakfast with some hot chick he picked up last night.”

Guy one, “Yeah - That’s the problem with hooking up like that, then you gotta be all social and take 'em out for breakfast and stuff.  Once you get married you don’t have to worry about all that shit, you can just get up and go surfing.”

Guy two, “Yeah, that’s what’s been great about getting married -  I may not get laid as much, but I surf more than ever…”

Me thinking, " Ha! I hear that…"


Too funny!


One huge advantage of a non-surfing spouse: she doesn’t compete with me for a new board & suit every year!

My gf just said to me "so, tell me more about pipeline.....".If i'll ever want to get rid of her I'll book next xmas to

I took my wife surfing a long time ago. We were riding an old tanker tandem and she was worried about swimming in. I told her “just hang on to the board and you’ll be fine”. Well on the last wave, I fell off and the board just kept going. It must have been 20 or 30 yards away before it stopped upside down. I saw the board with her arms and legs wrapped around it and I knew she was in trouble. I swam as fast as I could and when I got to her I had to rip her arms off the board and pull her out of the water. She was screaming and crying and saying I just tried to kill her. It was a bummer. Bad part was that she in waist deep water and if she hadn’t had her legs wrapped around the board, she may have noticed that she could just stand up. She kept saying “you told me to hang on no matter what”. I told her “not if you’re drowning!” Well I lost that argument.

To this day she never let’s me forget about that even though I think it was silly.

One thing about surfing a lot… if you surf 2-3 hours every day (not sitting in the water, but paddling and riding waves), you’ll be in great shape. Your wife or girlfriend will definitely enjoy the increased stamina.

My girlfriend and I had our first “date” surfing. She lived across the street and one day I saw her with a board so I figured it was a great way to break the ice. Fast fast-forward nearly 8 years to today, we still get out in the water together every once in a while. It really helped her enjoy surfing when I made a board just for her. She was then, and is still today, very much a beginner so getting her on a board that she could easily paddle and stand up on makes her much more likely to join me in the water. I did something similar to what you are thinking ethan eveans. I went with an 8’6" mini longboard. It was left up to me on how to shape it so went with everything my limited shaping experience told me would work for a beginner except for one little sticking point that the board had to fit under her arm. It is a little narrower than I would have liked at just under 22" but she is fairly short so her center of gravity is low and she says the board is plenty stable. I like your theory of the V in the nose but I wonder if that might push the board as she tries to stand up? (I really don’t know and am asking so one who might) That seems to be the most difficult part for beginners keeping their weight centered as they stand and having a V might turn the nose? My though is like a V-hull boat broaching in the surf.

Good luck and have fun. Even if she doesn’t like it you will have another board for yourself right!


I took my wife surfing a few times.  Got her onto a foamie and pushed her into a few waves.  She was a natural … agro.  There were a few swimmers in the surf zone and as she nearly mows them down, she shouts, “hey this is the surf zone! get outta here!”  It was the funniest moment ever.  She actually rode the waves pretty well for a beginner. She turned and proceeded down the line. I was very surprised she was so quick to figure it out.  I never took her surfing again.  She just likes to jump around in the shore wash and hang out in her bikini, and that’s how it should be!  One less agro in the water the better.  Besides the surfboard freaks her out some so its better.  My friend Tyler has a whole comedy routine about dating surfer girls.  “Dude bro, you’re so firing right now!  I’d totally surf your wave but i got some sand down under.”  
He has lots more but they’re very innappropriate.  When your girlfriend starts calling you dude or bro you know you have a problem. 
They like to chill on the beach, so let them enjoy it.  Stop pushing her to do anything she doesn’t enjoy and encorage her passions.


We don't have the best relationship !!! She does her thing and I do mine !!!!


Oh yes you do. Believe me, being left to do your own thing is bloody paradise on earth.


Pure wisdom