How to stay motivated to surf in winter

Winter is known for more consistent, larger swells, off-shore winds and a less crowded line-up. Three killer factors that should get you jumping out of bed in the morning and straight into that wet wetsuit!


But it’s hard. Really hard. It’s dark, it’s cold and there’s no way when that alarm goes off it’s morning already. Surely you just fell asleep a few hours ago?


Getting ready for a surf in a funky Glide Soul winter wetsuit


We all struggle to keep our surf stoke alive through winter. The water here in Sydney only gets as low as 16 degrees celsius which is nothing compared to winter water in the UK, NZ, South Africa or California. But I still struggle.


Most days I just can’t get out of bed! It’s so warm under my blanket and I need that extra sleep. There are a few strategies I use to help me stay stoked to surf in winter. I revert to them every time I need that little bit of motivation to surf. Hopefully they help you to get out there more in winter and keep up that paddle fitness and surf stoke.


Read: 10 reasons to road trip in winter


Tips to surf in winter


1. Don’t do it alone, call a friend or get a crew together

It is always easier to get out of bed if you know that sleeping in under your warm blankets will be letting a friend down. Make plans the night before to meet at your designated spot and stick to them. Be the friend that sends that text that reads ‘putting wettie on, see you in 15’ rather then the friend that writes ‘it’s cold, doesn’t look great, stay in bed?’.

I’ve been both friends. Be the friend that motivates and inspires others to surf. The mate you’re texting and your future self will thank you for it!



2. Set yourself goals

Summer is often full of goals: get surf fit, get a bikini body, learn a new trick. But what goals do you set yourself during winter? Have a look at what you want to achieve and set yourself new goals before summer comes around. Maybe it is to surf 3x a week, maybe you go for the lefts instead of the rights in every surf session. Whatever your goals, set them and make a pact with yourself to stick to them. This promise to yourself will give you that extra motivation to surf through winter. Aim high.


Read: What surfboards do the women pro surfers use


3. Have the proper equipment for surfing through the winter months

The most important thing to own and love through winter is a warm functional wetsuit. This shall become your best friend! Make sure you have the right goods to get the goods.


Every two years I get a new wetsuit, my go-to wetsuit in winter is a chest-zip Rip Curl Flash Bomb in a 3/2MM. It is the fastest drying wet suit on the market and top rated as the best. I actually look forward to putting it on!  South African surfer Nicole Eddy wrote an article recently about her winter surf essentials that is well worth a read. It gets cold in Cape Town too!


If you want to know more about buying a winter wetsuit, read this great write up by Laurs.


A great winter wetsuit like the O'Neill Psycho 3 is all you need to stay motivated to surf in winter
The O’Neill Psycho 3 wetsuit is perfect for winter surfing in NSW, Australia



4. Upgrade your surfboard

Every time I buy a new toy, I can’t wait to use it. It takes a while for me to get familiar with my new purchase so this keeps me motivated for quite sometime! If you can’t afford a new surfboard, think about replacing the tail pad so your board looks and feels new. Another tactic is to just replace your wax (something I definitely don’t do often enough). Your surfboard will feel and look new and you’ll be stoked to get her out in the water again.


Here’s another great article from Laurs on what ask for and look for when buying a new surfboard.



5. Watch surf clips the night before

Nothing gets me stoked on going surfing than watching your favourite surf clips the night before. A great all girls surf film is Nike’s Leave a Message which features surfing from Carissa Moore, Lakey Peterson, Laura Enever, Coco Ho, Byrne-Wickey Monyca and Malia Manuel.  If you’re after shorter surf clips, check out top videos from female surfers we have curated.



6. Take warm items down to the beach with you

I can’t leave the house in winter without a warm pair of Uggs, a hot water bottle and/or a hot flask of tea to meet you when you come out of the surf. Pouring that warm water over your wetsuit or feet when you are icy cold will make changing in the car park so much easier! I always look forward to my hot tea waiting for me on the beach. Prepare it all the night before and lay it out by your bed so all you have to do is add water and go.



7. Remember how good you feel after surfing

I don’t think there is any better way to start your day then in the ocean surfing with your friends. When you are struggling to get out of bed, try to remind yourself how good you always feel after a surf. Use this feeling as your motivation to get out there.


I hope these 7 tips on how to stay motivated to surf in winter help you out. Just think of how much better you will surf through summer with all that extra practice and paddle fitness.


How do you stay motivated to surf through winter? I need more advice too, tell me in the comments below! You legendary human you!


Hiya, I'm Alexa. Always on some sort of adventure! I'm excited to share my stories & introduce you to other rad women, also living the dream. I'm here to inspire you to do the same :-)


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