Learning to bodyboard involves floating out to waves on a boogie board and riding the current without fully standing up. Proper technique is achieved through practice and a structured fitness routine.
One of the most important elements of bodyboarding for beginners to learn is how to read a wave. This means evaluating the size and ferocity of the wave before heading into it. When a bodyboarder attempts to interact with a wave that is stronger than their skill level, it can result in serious injury. Beginners should start out with low waves that don’t go higher than approximately one foot and are relatively close to shore. With time and practice, bigger waves can be approached without fear of injury.
Physical fitness is also important to bodyboarding. One needs to be able to comfortably swim if knocked off the board, as well as manage paddling out to the waves in general. Practice swimming in a pool before attempting to bodyboard, as swimming against a current is more difficult than it seems. It is also possible to bring a boogie board to a pool to practice basic techniques such as balancing and paddling. Balance is especially important because various small waves and sea currents can knock one off the board before even reaching a wave.