Is Surfing Worth It? Pros and Cons of Being a Surfer

Is surfing worth it? The pros and cons of being a surfer

The pleasure of surfing, yeah that is. Surfing may be considered a prestigious and fashionable sport, without the lucrative market for leisurewear.

Despite this, many people, especially teenagers, are drawn to surfing as a form of rebellion and a way to spend their time chasing waves.

While some may see surfers as a unique and rare breed – tanned, rugged, and mysterious – the reality is that we are just ordinary people who enjoy the activity, the act of riding waves. You can call it flying.

Sure, surfing has its challenges and setbacks, but the thrill of riding a wave makes it all worth it.

But what if surfing has become more than you wanted in your life and actually sometimes takes over? Or if you want to surf but are unable?

In this post, we reveal the answer to the question if surfing is really worth it or not.

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What Do You Sacrifice as a Surfer?

Contrary to popular belief, surfers are not necessarily seen as desirable, attractive, or enviable by others. In fact, we may even be seen as lacking in practical skills and social abilities.

We endure a lot of challenges and sacrifices to pursue our love of surfing, a good example of that would be waking up before the crack of dawn to beat the crowds and try our luck at finding a wave. This is definitely something that every surfer can relate to.

It can be disheartening when you make the effort to get down to the beach, only to find that countless people are milling about, and even no space for parking at some spots.

And this is just the beginning. It is not uncommon for our relationships to suffer as well, as we may prioritize surfing over responsibilities such as paying bills or participating in social activities

But this doesn’t stop us from hitting the waves with true dedication. We’ll get out there, no matter what in order to experience the adrenaline rush that only surfers can understand.

As surfers, we are willing to endure long, cramped, and possibly uncomfortable travels to reach our desired surfing destination, even if it means being in close proximity to unpleasant individuals or illegal substances.

Once we arrive, we may find that the beach is overcrowded and not as peaceful as we had hoped.

Additionally, constant contact with rough ocean surfaces can lead to persistent injuries such as reef cuts that take a long time to heal.

We are accustomed to living with sand in every nook and cranny, as well as unexpected encounters with seaweed or when we realize we’ve forgotten our wax and have to ask someone for some.

We may even go so far as to call in sick to work just to catch a good surf session, only to return to the office looking sunburnt and suspicious.

We often struggle to explain to non-surfers the concept of a quiver and why it’s necessary to have more than one board.

We also cringe at the inaccurate portrayal of surfing in mainstream media and most importantly, we spend countless hours paddling in the water, sometimes just for the sake of paddling.

So for the regular dude or dudette, is surfing really worth it? Despite all the difficulties and annoyances that come with being a surfer, many of us continue to pursue this lifestyle because it brings us a sense of joy and fulfillment.

It’s possible that we may even believe that suffering through the challenges of surfing is necessary in order to truly appreciate the fleeting moments of exhilaration and accomplishment on the waves.

Ultimately, the decision to continue surfing comes down to personal preference and the value each individual places on this experience.

Is It Worth Pursuing Surfing If You Cannot Surf Regularly?

Of course, there are those of us who really want to surf but may not be able to due to a lack of access to the ocean or appropriate surfing conditions.

The answer to this question is easy, and it depends on how much surfing is something to invest your time and energy into.

If you’re passionate about surfing and have the means to enjoy it occasionally, then absolutely start thinking about finding a new apartment in that coastline town.

Some people spend their thirties to leave around a place they could surf and you will not regret this decision for life.

Is it financially worth it to live in an expensive city like San Diego, struggle to pay rent and gas, and have little chance of making it big as a WSL surfer? Absolutely!

If you are unstable financially and can’t afford it, even though you can minimalize your life habits, you can instead drive those miles away and get to the beach when you feel like it.

It is even ok if you’re surfing just a few times a year. You won’t become a pro surfer but you can embrace the surfer lifestyle by being part of the community.

After all, it’s the journey that makes us appreciate the experience and its worth. As long as we’re having fun and enjoying ourselves, that’s all that really matters.

In the grand scheme of things, whoever is having the most fun is the true winner in life.

What If You Stop Enjoying Surfing?

If everything came to a point where it’s a hustle for you to get to the beach or you used to like surfing and now you just don’t, it is ok to stop.

When surfing starts to feel like a chore, just take a break, and it doesn’t matter if it’s for a short time or forever.

The important thing is to have fun and do what makes you happy. Yes, you may lose your tan and your muscles may atrophy, but eventually, you’ll wake up feeling like going for a surf again.

Surfing is only worth it when you truly enjoy it. Rediscovering the joy of surfing is what matters, not how good you are at it.


Whether or not surfing is worth it ultimately depends on your personal values and priorities. Some may find the physical, financial, and social sacrifices necessary to pursue surfing to be worthwhile for the sense of accomplishment and enjoyment it brings.

Others may find these sacrifices to be too great and choose to pursue other hobbies or activities. There is no right or wrong answer, and what is worth it for one person may not be for another.

It’s important to consider your own goals, desires, and limitations, and make a decision that aligns with what is most meaningful and fulfilling for you.

Do what you love, enjoy your journey and remember to tell yourself why surfing hooked you in the first place. I’m sure there’s an answer inside of you as to whether or not it’s worth it.