Why do surfers need wax?
Surf wax is designed to give the surfer traction on their board. Without surf wax, surfers would slide right off of the board because water makes the boards very slippery. Surfers need to wax their board every time they take it into the water. There are several types of wax that are used for different water temperatures. Types of wax:
- Cold water wax (below 60 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Cool water wax (From 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Warm/tropical water wax (Above 70 degrees Fahrenheit)
Each type of wax hardens and melts at different temperatures, which is why you need to make sure you have the right kind for your climate. If the wax is too hard you will not get traction and if it is too soft, it will melt off of your board. Many types of wax have different scents but they all do the same job and none stand above the rest as having a better quality – although everyone tends to have their favorites.
Instead of wax some surfers put grip on their boards. Many pros and a lot of other surfers choose to put traction pads on the tail end of their board. This means that you only need to wax the part of the board where your front foot goes. Additionally, these traction pads have a back bumper on them which some surfers claims helps them keep control and turn. Using grip or wax is really a matter of preference. You should try them both and see which you prefer. I personally use only wax but know many surfers that swear by the traction pads – I am a bit more ‘old school’ though and tend to be the minority by only using wax.
Here are links to some of the popular surf wax brands: