Stab Magazine | Ian ‘Kanga’ Cairns Delivers Surf Etiquette Sermon on SUPs

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Ian ‘Kanga’ Cairns Delivers Surf Etiquette Sermon on SUPs

A shocker at Oceanside prompts the Bronzed Aussie to take to social media and vent.

news // Sep 21, 2016
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

They are fast becoming public enemy number one in the surfing community. Now Stand-Up Paddleboarders have earned the ire of Bronzed Aussie and Australian surfing legend, Ian ‘Kanga’ Cairns. He was so rattled by a recent run-in with Stand-Up Paddleboarders while surfing Oceanside in California he took to Facebook to lay down some ground rules. The sermon ranged from the easily overlooked to the downright obvious (though often still disregarded). All of it pointed, helpful and genuinely informative. 

On the topic of bailing boards and safety, he writes:

Always control your equipment.

Bailing your board is bad form. Try to paddle over waves, or launch your board over the whitewater, but do not dive and let the Sup wash in on the whitewater to the end of your leash. Every surfer sees a Sup as a dangerous object and thinks of us as kooks bailing their boards. This adds fuel to the fire. Learn how to hold onto your leash near the tail of the board to pull it through waves. Be really careful of others in the lineup if you fall riding a wave. Hitting another surfer in the lineup is instant dismissal and adds fuel to the surfer debate that Sup boards should not be out there.”

On the topic of localism, he writes:

“Check who’s in the lineup.

As you paddle out, survey the lineup to see who is out already. These guys are in front of you, in line for the next waves, so be cool and remember them. Make sure that you identify the alpha dog in the pack. He is the one you may have problems with, so you need to be ultra respectful and surprise him with kindness.”

On making sure you get your fill, he writes:

“Increase wave count by catching wide waves.

If you’re smart about your paddling and really scope a lineup, you may find that there are good wide or deep waves that are not readily available to the surfers in the primary lineup and this is the way you can increase your wave-count considerably, riding waves that before had gone un-ridden. To do this you will really need to sharpen your spin and go skills, but once you get this dialed, you’re on your way to getting way more waves, without every impacting the established lineup and the surfers out there.”

On the plain obvious, he writes:

“Do NOT drop in.

If someone is already riding the wave, don’t even paddle for it, don’t hover on the top of the wave, don’t take off in front of someone and flick out and certainly don’t ride a whole wave and stuff someone in the whitewater. If you do this you’re back in the doghouse and may be asked to leave.”

Read Ian’s full post, here:


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