Family surfing and watersports – 5 activities to get involved with this season.

Family surfing and watersports activities are a growing area of interest. The UK and Ireland’s weather is slowly improving. Easter holidays are just around the corner and the new surfing season kick off is just on the horizon. Therefore it makes sense families are making plans and looking at what fun they can have during the coming months.

Essential surfing and watersports equipment.

Surfing and watersports, of course, need specific hardware. A surfboard, wetsuit, leash and fins are all essential. Otherwise, you’ll just be swimming. But what else will you need for family surfing and watersports adventure.

The EXIT Watersports XRAIL – a proven way to dry your wet wetsuit and get it ready for the next session. Getting yours and your kid’s wetsuits moisture free is key to ongoing comfort. Nobody wants to get into a damp and soggy wetsuit the next day!

The EXIT Watersports SUX – if you’re purchasing the XRAIL then it makes sense to add the SUX suction cup and upright. This allows the XRAIL to be attached to any smooth surface – indoors or outdoors – and dry your wetsuit.

The EXIT Watersports BUX – keeping your wet gear away from dry, or vice versa, the EXIT Watersports BUX wetsuit bucket is a nifty piece of gear that can be used in all vehicles. At 70L it’s one of the biggest wetsuit change buckets on the market!

Don’t forget to check out the EXIT Watersports online shop for more family surfing and watersports equipment.

Family surfing trips.

With this article being about family surfing activities it’d be silly if we didn’t mention it as one of the things to get involved with (if you aren’t doing so already). Surfing as a family can be super fun. You don’t need hardcore conditions. And in fact, when we say ‘surfing’ this can mean anything that allows you to ride waves.

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Nothing beats surfing with your kids.

Bodyboards, paddle boards, kayaks, mats and surfboards are all worthy of your attention. The age of your offspring may dictate certain craft over others. Bodyboards, for instance, can be a great intro to surfing for young children. Whereas kayaks and paddle boards can be good for going two up – mum or dad ‘driving’ with your child on the front. Siblings can then do the same with the other parent.

Where – any usual beach break is usually good for family surfing. Try to avoid rocky or reefy locations. And steer clear of heavily tidal venues.

When – smaller waves will be your friend. You don’t need massive swell. And ideally as little wind as possible. That said some days that don’t initially look favourable can end up working well.

Family paddle boarding adventures.

One of the great things about paddle boarding is the ability to navigate any stretch of water. Inflatable paddle boards, for many, will be the ‘go to’ for various reasons. Easily transportable, soft to land on if you fall yet with plenty of versatility SUP adventures on flat water can be extremely fun. Heading off raound the next river bend for a picnic is something we recommend for all outdoor families.

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Paddle boarding for kids is a great intro to watersports.

And then, should you fancy a few mellow waves with your kids you’re able to take your paddle board in the surf and enjoy some swell sliding fun. Paddle boards can be used almost anywhere and therefore definitely a great bit of watersports kit to add to your family ‘toy box’.

Where – lakes, rivers, canals or coastal locations with flat water are ideal for family SUP adventures. If you end up going in waves make sure you steer clear of other water users.

When – sheltered stretches of water can be doable for SUP in a broad range of weather. Open locations will be more susceptible to wind and therefore wouldn’t be the best choice. Avoid rivers with fast flow.

Bodyboarding discoveries.

Being more transportable and easier to carry bodyboards are a good choice for families looking to get off the beaten track. Heading down winding cliff paths to a secluded beach, with waves all to yourselves, is fulfilling and rewarding. 

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Kids love bodyboarding!

Once at your spot having bodyboards in tow will give an opportunity for all family members to ride the waves and enjoy some time in the brine. If you can time your bodyboarding adventure with good weather then all the better. Although, it doesn’t have to be wall to wall sunshine for fun times to be had.

Where – your choice of bodyboarding location is down to your family’s requirements. Somewhere off the beaten track (maybe a secluded cove or beach requiring a walk in) can work well. Avoid harsh conditions and hazards such as strong currents and tide. Lifeguards may not be available at these locations so play it safe.

When – sunny weather is always welcome. But if blue skies aren’t in abundance at least try and plan your bodyboarding session with lighter wind and smaller waves.

Family wild swimming sessions.

Perhaps one of the simplest watersports you can enjoy with your family is wild swimming. You don’t even need to go that far from your home to find a suitable wild swimming location. Spot choices can be rivers, lakes or other bodies of water. Just make sure your chosen put in is safe.

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Combining your famil;y wild swimming with some gentle wave action can be good fun.

Kids love wild swimming. There’s nothing like jumping into naturally formed water for a healthy and mentally satisfying experience. For young children it’s all very swallows and amazons. And memories like this last a lifetime.

Where – wild swimming can be enjoyed in a variety of locations. Ensure access is public and avoid hazards such as fast flowing rivers or heavily tidal beaches. Flat water is best.

When – wild swimming can be done at any time of year. Some enthusiasts will argue colder is better as the chill has more health benefits. However, for young children this isn’t the focus. So warmer months will be better for them.

Sit on top kayaking for all.

Rotomoulded sit on top kayaks are another versatile watersports ‘toy’. Roomy enough to carry passengers and supplies, sit ons are good for all kinds of family watersports adventures.

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Sit on top kayaking with your kids can be extremely fulfilling!

Flat water touring missions – even just a few miles along the river – can be great fun. Alternatively, coastal discoveries on flatter, calmer days can be accessed via a sit on kayak. Grab those essential supplies and head off for some adventurous fun.

Where – the roto moulded plastic nature of sit on top kayaks means they’re quite heavy and can be a handful in waves. Unless you’re highly skilled. Flat water is therefore mostly the go for sit down paddling. If you do head for surf go on a small day to make it easier on yourself and more fun for the kids.

When – as with all these watersports kayaking can be done any time of year. But warmer months are better for all the family.

Other family surfing and watersports suggestions.

YOur family surfing and watersports activities don’t just have to be limited to surfing and the aforementioned. There are plenty of other ways to enjoy the water – whether inland or at the coast. A few other sports include – 

  • Light wind windsurfing (a kiddy rig and high voluminous board are must have for children)
  • Wing SUP (small foil wing wings for kids and a bigger paddle board will make this more fun)
  • Dinghy sailing (either kid friendly single hander like an Opi or double hander all the family can get in)
  • Skimboarding (this can be great for kids)
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If you hasve access to teh kit kiddy windsurfing is great watersports for wee ones.

…the list goes on.

Make sure you check out EXITS Watersports’ online shop for all those essential family surfing and watersports accessories. If you have any questions just shout.

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