Why Surfing Could Change Your Psychology

We have all seen those surfer types, strutting their stuff on the beach and making everything they do look effortless. I’m sure you’ve asked yourself if it’s something in the water that gives them their confidence or could it be those large surfboards inflating their self-esteem? Well now surfing can claim the title of the most confidence enhancing sport of all, after new research from Exeter University in England proves it categorically.

Before we examine the reasons why surfing is so good for your ego, let’s explain just how the research was conducted. Over 150 non-athletes took part in the research which tested 15 popular sports. Participants completed an extensive psychological confidence test and then took part in a specific sport for 3 months, after which they completed the same confidence test. The research concluded that the participants who recorded the most improved marks on their confidence tests were the surfers, and by quite a margin.

The Masters students who conducted the research have suggested that there are many factors to surfing which promotes confidence. Firstly it takes place outdoors and participants are pitted against the elements. “This is something that we have seen promotes a great deal of confidence” suggests Tony Billingham of the Sports Sciences department, “as people are very empowered by being able to overcome elements that they have previously not been challenged by”. This is a trait that many other extreme sports have as well. Further more, surfing is a very physically demanding sport and participants gain confidence from not only being fitter but looking fitter to others. Surfers are often made to look even more healthy by the all-over tan that they often pick up from being outside in the sun for much of the day. Another reason that surfing helps people become more self-assured it that it has ethos of laid back, happy-go-lucky confidence at all times, which is something that rubs off on new comers very quickly indeed.

Runner up in the list of most confidence building sports was cycling, so if you’re in need of an ego boost grab your surfboards or mountain bikes, get outside, and start training today

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