While bodyboarding is affiliated to the Surfing Federation, it is a completely different discipline. Spotyride offers you the opportunity to ditch your board and become one with the marine environment. Your body is the only engine necessary. This sport guarantees intense gliding sensation!

What is bodyboarding?

If you’ve ever practiced surfing, you’ll quickly find that bodyboarding relies on the same fundamentals. Launching, getting the wave, and gliding! If you do not have previous surfing experience, don’t worry. Learning the basics of this sport is very easy. Learn everything there is to know about bodysurfing!

This wave sport is practiced with a small board and a pair of short flippers. The rider is usually lying on their stomach. There are variations such as Stand Up, where the rider is standing on the board, or DropKnee with consists of having on knee on the board and the other foot is flat. The bodyboarder can also perform maneuvers. Bodyboarding has recently evolved thanks to riders pushing the limits of the sport with aerial figures.

Although bodyboarding is still little known and talked about, only a couple days are needed to learn the basics. Bodyboarding can complement the practice of surfing in order to reduce any apprehension regarding the marine world, and to better understand how the waves work.


Bodyboarding in details: the gear

a) The board

The bodyboarding board is typically short and flexible. Choosing your board will depend on your height.

The gear influences the performance, it is essential to pick a board that fits your height and your level. That’s right, the second most important factor to take into consideration when choosing your board is your level of skills. Don’t worry, we all need to start somewhere! 🙂

A beginner profile should opt for a board with good buoyancy. This will make launches on the waves, learning technique and progress much easier! This type of board is typically made of foam.

For more experienced riders, the expectations for your board should be different. These riders should maximize speed and maneuverability. Boards made out of materials such as artel, surlyne or polyethylene are more appropriate options.

Just like for surf boards, waxing your board for better adherence is great! The board comes with a small leash to tie at your wrist in order to prevent the rider from losing it during falls or figures.

b) The flippers

The flippers are a determining factor when lauching in the waves. Basically, flippers = thrust!

There are 2 different types of flippers for different levels of riders:

Beginner profiles should prioritize comfort. Choosing flexible flippers is ideal. More advanced profiles can opt for symetrical flippers that grant more precision for board guidance.

c) The suit

Whether you get cold easily or not, wearing a bodysuit is recommended when practicing bodyboarding. This layer of protection between your skin and the water is useful during both winter and summer.

These suits are usually made of neoprene. There are different suits for different seasons:

  • For the summertime

A shorty suit (short sleeves and legs) or a full-body suit for those who can’t stand the cold are both appropriate options. Bodysuits’ thickness vary in order to protect the wearer from the cold. In the summertime, Spotyride suggests choosing a 3.2mm suit (3mm on the torso, and 2 on the limbs). For more daring riders, a simple boardshort and lycra is possible too!

  • For the winter

A 4.3mm (4mm on the torso, 3mm on the limbs) can be used if coupled with a polar lycra for an additional layer of protection in cold waters. Other than that, you can choose a 5.4mm (5 on the torso, 4 on the libs). The bodysuit has to be full-length, and depending on the water temperature, paired with anneoprene balaclava, gloves and shoes to keep warm in the water.

Diagram bodyboarding equipment board flippers suit

The Annaëlle wave : a bodyboarding legend

Although athletes are usually the ones who mark the history of their sport, waves can too! Just like surfing has Nazare and Hossegor, bodyboarding also has its legendary spots.

Introducing the Annaëlle wave, considered one of the most dangerous waves in Europe, a reference in the world of bodyboarding.

What is it?

Located off the coast of the Finistère (Brittany), 20 minutes away from the Lampaul-Ploudalmézeau coast, Annaëlle is know for being a temperamental wave. Fast and powerful, the Annaëlle wave is impossible to surf. This spot is exclusively reserved for qualified bodyboarders. In 2021, only 16 professional bodyboarders from all over the world, dared to challenge the wave.

This spot was discovered at the beginning of the century, and was a long-kept secret. Now, the Annaëlle International Challenge is hosted between September and December. This challenge is a beautiful way to pay tribute to this natural giant, and to showcase bodyboarding as an extreme sport.

If you wish to observe the Annaëlle wave, a good pair of binoculars will help! This tool will allow you to see it on the coast of Britanny.

Although you might need to wait before facing Annaëlle, do not hesitate to try out a new (and less dangerous) spot near you! You don’t know where to find them? Spotyride is here for you!