Everything has changed in the wake of COVID-19. It’s no longer safe to enjoy our favorite outdoor activities with friends and family. However, it’s more important than ever to take care of ourselves and our mental health. So, what do we do? Fortunately, some outdoor activities can be safely enjoyed solo. One of these activities is surfing. Before you rush to the ocean, check with your local authorities to figure out how you can access local beaches without violating quarantine rules. Many beaches are temporarily closed to the public. If surfing is allowed, do so respectfully and responsibly. Here’s how. 

1. Put on your gear at home.
Wax your surfboard and put on your wetsuit in the safety of your home. This reduces time in parking lots and allows you to avoid interacting with other surfers who may not be following social distancing rules. 

2. Surf alone.
Surfing with a friend is ideal, but during a pandemic, social interaction must be limited. Just be thankful you can get out on the water at all. 

3. Surf near home.
Limit your travel, and surf near home. Avoid driving to any spots that aren’t local. 

4. Turn around if it’s crowded.
If you don’t feel comfortable with the crowd, go back home.

5. Stay a safe distance from fellow surfers.
Paddle away from everyone when you venture out into the waves. And while you’re waiting, make sure you’re far away from the crowd.

6. Leave right after your session.
Don’t linger after you’re done with the waves. Go straight home to avoid interacting with others. 

7. Wait to change until you get home.
Get home as quickly as possible. Put a towel down in your car and wear your wetsuit home, until you’re in a safe space to change.