Suggestions for enjoying surfing in Vietnam.
Da Nang, Vietnam was such a place where a year ago, there was not even a single surf shop can be found around. However, as of spring 2019, there were more than 10 surf shops, hotels, surf schools, surfboard rentals and more. As a result, the number of surfers visiting and living in Da Nang is increasing. Most of them are inexperienced, beginner or inexperienced surfers, and in exchange for their freedom, some have been outlawed. In Da Nang, this is especially true at the surf spots in Front and in front of The Village, where if there are five surfers in the water means that there is a high probability of drop-ins occurring.
The root of the problem is not that they did not know the rules, but that they were not informed of them. Also, if people who can’t see what’s going on around them handle big surfboards, it is more likely to lead to a big accident, and depending on the nature of the accident, it is undeniable that there will be restrictions on surfing. Therefore, with reference to advanced surfing countries, here are some basic rules and manners for surfing, as well as safety measures that are unique to Vietnam.
Currently, there are 3 risky scenarios that can be postulated.
- Accidents caused by lack of vision
- Accidents caused by things one is not aware of
- Problems and accidents caused by poor manners and etiquette
By preventing problems and accidents arising from the above, we believe that more surfers can share a comfortable surfing experience.
What you need to know if you want to surf in Vietnam
All year round, people playing to bath in the sea have priority in bathing areas and surfers should avoid surfing in these areas, except for surfers who are able to avoid bathers 100% of the time.
Throughout the year, ropes with buoys attached to them are present in or on the water. These ropes are usually set up in shallow water, i.e. constantly moving to areas with good terrain. Ropes and buoys can be dangerous as they can have sharp edges and attachments. Accidents have also occurred where surfboards and bodies have been hit by these ropes. Given the strong currents in Da Nang, keep a good distance from these ropes.
There are many swimmers in the sea, especially during the summer months from March to October. Swimmers sometimes submerge into the water and suddenly resurfaced. This can be very difficult to spot, so be very careful while riding the wave. When waiting for a wave, it is always necessary to check the situation not only offshore, but also close to shore.
Da Nang has very strong currents. Autumn, winter and spring in particular demands for paddling against strong offshore currents. If you are swept into an offshore current, it is very difficult to return to shore. If you are swept away, it is difficult to return on the same route you were swept away, so paddle to the side and try to get off the offshore current route and back to shore. Alternatively, paddle towards the breaking wave, take a couple of hits and return.
Watch out for submerged rubbish and fishing traps. Metal and concrete litter increases, especially during rough weather. The way the sea surface shakes often reveals underwater topography and the presence of rubbish, so observe carefully to ensure your safety. However, fishing traps are dangerous because there is no water resistance, so they cannot be easily observed by simply looking at the appearance of the sea surface.
Surfing is dangerous when waves are too big, or when currents are strong, rainy time, during strong winds, or when there is thunder in the distance. In particular, get out of the water and stay away from the beach immediately during thunderstorms.
Before entering the sea, it is advised to check the waves for at least 10 minutes to make sure they are well suited to your level. At your first surf spot, we recommend a wave check of at least 20 minutes.
If you are not sure whether the waves are suitable for your level, ask for a surf guide or do not enter the water. Otherwise, ensure your safety as much as possible and enjoy surfing.
Before going into the sea, make sure you do plenty of warming up exercise. Lack of exercise, lack of sleep, alcohol consumption and smoking increase the probability of accidents.
Always wear the leash cord slightly tight around the back ankle or below the knee, hold the velcro and clamp it well before surfing.
When renting a board, it is advisable to check the condition of the board and leash cord.
Surfing at point breaks
When the terrain condition is good, even beach breaks can be beautiful point breaks. In such cases, keep in mind that the unique surfing rules of the point break apply and act accordingly. Below are some of the more important considerations to take into account while surfing on a point break.
Surfers who are technically unable to ride a single wave should consider giving up surfing at that point break. If you are perceived by the surfers around you as a surfer who can’t ride a wave, your wave order may not come.
When entering the sea in groups of four or more, it is essential to choose a point where no one else is in the water, or delay the time of entry.
If other surfers are already in the water, check if your wave order is available before entering the water. Alternatively, you should move to another spot or enter at a later time.
Paddling sideways and taking waves while approaching other surfers is bad manners. Ride the wave that comes in front of you. Surfers waiting at the wave peak first have priority.
Priority is given to surfers who are at the peak of the wave or in a deep position where it is difficult to take off. SUPs and longboarders who can ride from the outside should also try to take the wave peak.
‘One surfer, one wave.’