Water sports are a great way to spend your free time and stay in shape, the variety of activities on offer can be pretty overwhelming at some times, and taking your hobby from the mainland to the open ocean can be a big step. The excitement felt when staring at the vast blue horizon in front of you must be balanced with a sense of safety, as anything can happen when out at sea, and if you want to make the most of your time you must also be aware of what to look out for and what to avoid when taking part in oceanic water sports. Here is a list of five water sports safety tips to remember during sea sports.
Have the right gear
Some of the most important planning you must do before venturing to the beach is making sure you have all the right equipment for the activity ahead; if you are planning on diving headfirst into the ocean during the colder months might it be a good idea to pack a wetsuit or warm clothes for after? If you are using any boards do they have working ankle or wrist straps? Are they sanded down properly? All these little checks you do at home will potentially save your day from disaster, so make sure you have the correct gear and that it is in order before you head out.
Only do sports in safe spots
While the ocean does offer you endless freedom to choose where to do your activities, there are definitely safer places to choose from when deciding where to spend your day. People have ventured out and found the best surfing spots, or the safest place to go cliff diving, and others have gone through the effort of finding the beaches and spots that should be avoided at all costs, due to rocks, rip currents, or water quality, so do your research, follow these guidelines, and choose a safe spot to enjoy yourself.
Avoid going at it alone
Although there might be a healthy amount of solo sea sports, going to the most secluded beach by yourself without informing anyone may not be the smartest move. You may be the most experienced sailor in the world, though it only takes a single incident to change the course of your day for the worse, so try and take a buddy with you, go to a beach with a lifeguard, or at least tell someone where you are going, so if something does go wrong you have someone you can rely on.
Check the weather and water conditions
The sea can be a very temperamental place, and there are so many factors that influence how hospitable or hostile she shall be towards you and your friends. We all dream for sunny skies and ideal wave conditions, but sometimes that just is not the case, so checking in on weather reports to make sure its not a gale force thunderstorm, and consulting tide and wave reports before venturing out is always a wise decision.
Know what you are doing
Everyone loves spontaneous trips to the beach, excitement levels could not be higher, and while there are many sports that you can just pick up in an afternoon, some of the more extreme or technical activities require a lot of specialised equipment or training to perform properly. Before attempting these sports try taking a class or two on sports you have not tried before, or have a skilled friend who can safely talk and instruct you through your chosen activity, as long as you have the right knowledge to get you safely back to shore then go wild and enjoy yourself!