To teach surfers to look for and catch waves that offer the maximum manoeuvre potential for that day.


Ask the surfers to go for a light jog on the beach followed by stretching exercises.


  • Send the surfers out for 20 minutes. 
  • Ask them to catch only waves that will allow them to do the maximum number of major manoeuvres. 
  • For example, the best waves on a particular day would allow surfers to perform 3 major manoeuvres. 
  • So on this day, the 3 manoeuvre waves are the ones the surfers are trying to catch.


Too often we hear coaches and parents saying to surfers to only catch good waves in their heats. 

The problem is, what constitutes a good wave? It is better to think in terms of the “manoeuvre potential” a wave has.

For example, when a surfer is studying the ocean, they can imagine performing manoeuvres on the sections of the waves they observe.

On one wave it might be 3 manoeuvres, on another it might only be 1 manoeuvre.

On any given day, the best waves offer a certain manoeuvre potential that a surfer can calculate and use as a guide to catch the best waves.

Thinking in terms of manoeuvre potential, not only helps in wave selection, but also helps the surfer to know how they are going in their heat.

If for example, they want to catch 2 x 3 manoeuvre waves in their heat, they are able to evaluate their progress as they paddle back to the peak, and allows them to congratulate themselves is successful.