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Should I wear a leash?

If Skip Frye's board ends up on the rocks he can just make himself a new one

Elisa Feigat — South Coast Surf Shop
Elisa Feigat — South Coast Surf Shop

Because all beginners should be wearing a leash, going leashless gives a surfer more credibility in the line-up. It is a statement that says, “I am a good surfer, so don’t drop in on me.”

It is more difficult to hang ten with a leash dangling off your ankle. A leash also causes drag in the water, and sometimes it gets caught up in your feet. But not wearing a leash means that you can lose your board and have to swim for it.

Shark-deterrent leash label

Jason M., 43, who lives in Pacific Beach and is a regular surfer at Tourmaline Surfing Park, gives this advice: “If it is high tide and there is a wind on the water, wear a leash.” If you lose your board on a wave it is more likely that a board will surf itself all the way back to the shore. Epoxy boards are more likely to make it all the way to the shore before a surfer can catch it. They are light, and when there is no one on them, they are likely to catch the first wave in.

On big days almost everyone wears a leash. There are a few that will never wear a leash. I have never seen Skip Frye wear a leash. But if his board ends up on the rocks he can make himself a new board.

Joe Enge, also a regular surfer at Tourmaline, cautions, “Too often surfers rely on the leash to not hit another surfer, but they misjudge the length of the leash and still hit someone.”

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Elisa Feigat — South Coast Surf Shop
Elisa Feigat — South Coast Surf Shop

Because all beginners should be wearing a leash, going leashless gives a surfer more credibility in the line-up. It is a statement that says, “I am a good surfer, so don’t drop in on me.”

It is more difficult to hang ten with a leash dangling off your ankle. A leash also causes drag in the water, and sometimes it gets caught up in your feet. But not wearing a leash means that you can lose your board and have to swim for it.

Shark-deterrent leash label

Jason M., 43, who lives in Pacific Beach and is a regular surfer at Tourmaline Surfing Park, gives this advice: “If it is high tide and there is a wind on the water, wear a leash.” If you lose your board on a wave it is more likely that a board will surf itself all the way back to the shore. Epoxy boards are more likely to make it all the way to the shore before a surfer can catch it. They are light, and when there is no one on them, they are likely to catch the first wave in.

On big days almost everyone wears a leash. There are a few that will never wear a leash. I have never seen Skip Frye wear a leash. But if his board ends up on the rocks he can make himself a new board.

Joe Enge, also a regular surfer at Tourmaline, cautions, “Too often surfers rely on the leash to not hit another surfer, but they misjudge the length of the leash and still hit someone.”

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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