When Tom was here in Austin for a show at the end of last year, we sat down and talked about wake surfing quite a bit. He had seen a lot of pros going at it during lay days, etc., and was really curious. He really wanted to go out, but it was the December and pretty cold. The normal questions came up like 'is it similar to ocean surfing', 'how are the boards different', what skills translate over'. Well you can watch this video and many others, and see it is not really like ocean surfing. Surfing in the ocean is fundamentally all about positioning, paddling and catching the wave and knowing how and when to pop up, all skills not necessary in wake surfing. The boards are actually quite different from a shapers standpoint, but for the lay person the boards are basically similar depending on style. The primary skill that translates, and this translates back and forth, whether you have never been in the ocean or whether you have never ridden a displacement wave, is comfort or presence on a board. The actual act of riding the board is where the two activities (surfing and wakesurfing) merge.
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