Bodyboarding is one of the most fun activities that you can do on the beach, and while you would mostly see adults enjoying the activity, kids can also have fun doing bodyboarding too. Bodyboarding is usually seen as a way for children to get into surfing, as it is basically much easier to learn than surfing since they don’t have to stand up on the board. However, there is a process in teaching kids how to bodyboard, and it is not as simple as letting them get on top of the board. They would need to be trained at a young age to bodyboard so that once they get older, they will be able to ride bigger waves and have a better balance. But, how young should children be for them to understand the basics of bodyboarding? Let us find out as we take a look at several tips on how to teach children bodyboarding.
How Old Should a Kid Be to Start Bodyboarding?
Most experienced bodyboarding teachers would tell you that kids can start learning how to bodyboard at any age, but the recommended youngest age that children can go bodyboarding is three or four years old. By that age, children will be able to understand the basic concepts of bodyboarding, although they wouldn’t be able to ride waves at the point, and they should always be guided by a guardian.
However, before they can bodyboard, the kids must first learn how to swim. Swimming skills can be learned by the kids by taking them to swimming lessons, which is quite common in dozens of places around the world. So, you would need to enroll your child in swimming lessons before they can learn how to bodyboard. Swimming is an important skill to learn before bodyboarding, as it allows the children to have an alternative plan in case they fall off the board so that they can reach the shore safely.
Tips on How Children Can Enjoy Bodyboarding Better
Getting a bodyboarding teacher is the best way for your child to learn how to bodyboard, but you can also teach your kids some pointer in bodyboarding if there aren’t any teaching sessions during certain days at the beach. Here are several tips for teaching children how to bodyboard.
Get a Suitable Bodyboard
Because most children are relatively shorter than adults, the adult-sized bodyboard wouldn’t be suitable for them, as it will be harder for them to control or balance it on the water. To get them to be more comfortable in bodyboarding, they must be given a bodyboard that suits their size. The best bodyboard for 5 year old would probably be the small-sized ones that are much cheaper than regular bodyboards. However, make sure that the bodyboard is not too small, as it would also bring problems similar to larger bodyboards. To be sure that the bodyboard you are getting is the correct size, you can bring your child with you to the local surfing store so that you will have an accurate reference.
Buy a Fitting Wetsuit
Besides the bodyboard, another essential piece of equipment that children should have before they go bodyboarding is the wetsuit, which is usually a one-piece suit that protects the wearer against hypothermia and other harmful elements on the sea. By wearing a wetsuit, children will actually be able to focus more on bodyboarding than getting annoyed by how cold the water is or how their skin gets irritated by rocks, weeds, and other elements found on the beach. In addition, wearing a wetsuit would also boost the kids’ confidence, as they would feel like they are professional bodyboarders, and this confidence makes the activity more fun for them.
Stayin Shallow Water
Staying in shallow water would allow the children to stay safe while bodyboarding, as the deeper parts of the beach would often have high waves that may be too much for them to handle. Besides being safer, staying in shallow water would also be much more fun for children since they don’t have to worry about the dangers of getting too deep into the water, and they could also stand up and swim back to shore easier if ever they fall off the board.
Bodyboard with Them
The best way for them to enjoy bodyboarding is to have loved ones join them in doing the activity, which means that you should also have fun bodyboarding with them. The enjoyment they get from bodyboarding with friends or family members will encourage them to train more in the activity, and one day, they may even want to join competitions once they get older. Continue guiding your child in whatever hobby he or she wishes to do, and they may eventually become inspired to continue doing it or to become better at it.