So, you’ve got your board and you’ve got yourself a wet suit, or maybe a rash guard, and now you’re ready to hit the waves, right? Well, yes and no. Surfing can be as basic and as simple as you want it to be, but throughout its evolution, there have become certain things that many surfers now consider essential pieces of equipment. One of those essential pieces of equipment is a surf leash.
This wasn’t always the case early in its life. The surf leash was often laughed at and looked down on in the surfing world. Of course, over time, that changed. Now, it’s rare to see anyone on a board without one.
If a surf leash is new to you, you might be wondering how to attach it to your board. We’ve got you covered with this guide on how to attach a surfboard leash.
What is a Surf Leash and Why Should You Use One?
A surf leash isn’t a complicated piece of equipment, despite what some might think. Consisting of only a handful of components, the surfboard leash is typically made from polyurethane.It is tied to your surfboard on one end and attached to your ankle on the other.
The biggest reason for having a surf leash is so that the board stays close to you should you lose control of it during those wipeouts we’re all too familiar with. However it’s important to consider how long your surf leash should be considering the size of your particular surfboard. . This not only saves you from having to make the long swim to recover the board, butit also keeps the board from interfering with other surfers that may be around.
While a surf leash shouldn’t be used as a safety harness, and you should always maintain control of your board whenever possible, there is the possibility of a wipeout causing serious injury. Having your board attached to you can sometimes make it easier for rescuers to spot you from afar.
If you’re not used to wearing a surf leash, there is no doubt that it can feel a little bothersome at times. The surfboard leash can at times feel as if it’s hindering your surfing more than it is helping. However, take the time to get used to it and it will become an integral part of your day-to-day surfing.
How to Attach a Surf Leash
- Preparing the Leash String: The surf leash itself is attached to the board with the leash string or cord. Most surfboards these days come with a leash plug already installed,so that shouldnot be something you need to worry about.
There are two different types of leashes when it comes to attaching them to the cord. Your leash will either have a loop connection or a Velcro connection. It is important to know which one you have before tying the cord. A loop connection will need to be threaded onto the cord before tying it to the board, where a Velcro connection can be attached to the cord after tying.
Now that you’ve determined what type of leash you have, it’s time to prepare the cord:
- Fold the cord in half so that both sides are equal in length.
- There are more than a few knots you can use to tie the cord, but the easiest one is a simple overhand knot.If you have a leash that has a loop connection, you are going to want to thread the cord through before tying the knot.
- The knot then gets tightened when you pull toward the loose ends. It is important at this point to leave some of the loose ends open to avoid having the knot come loose when on the water. The result should be a loop that resembles a noose.
- Tying the Leash to the Board: Now that you have got a knot tied in the cord, you can attach the surf leash to the board by undergoing the following steps.
- Straighten out the cord by pinching together the end that is opposite of the knot (the loop end).
- Thread the pinched loop end through the surfboard’s plug by passing it under the pin that is in the plug.
- If you have a Velcro-style leash that has not been attached to the cord yet, now is the time to do that. If you have a loop connection that you have already attached to the cord, then move on to the next step. Be sure to pass the Velcro through both ends of the loop to get the tightest tie-down.
- Now you simply have to pass the leg attachment end through the loop, pull it all the way through, and make it as tight as possible.
After following those steps, your surf leash should beattached, and you should be ready to hit the waves.
How to Properly Use Your Surf Leash
Now that you are ready to use your new surf leash, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- Your surf leash should always be attached to your back leg (the leg at the back of the board).
- Attach the leash as tightly as possible while still allowing it to be comfortable and provide a good range of motion. This might take a couple of uses before you find the right spot.
- The strap should be as low on your ankle as possible. If it is too high, it could interfere with your motion and it could possibly cause you to wipe out.
- Make sure there are no tangles or knots before you strap the surf leash on. A knot in the leash could cause it to break under pressure.
- Always regularly check the condition of your leash. The leash should be replaced if there is any sign of fraying, as damage could cause it to break.
Now that you know how to attach a surf leash, you should be ready to hit the waves and enjoy your time surfing.