Ian Cairns is a legend. Sorry, I don’t know how else to say that.
So, when I asked for his help in gathering some sup surfing guidelines for Standup Journal online and he got back to me within a half hour, I was pretty stoked. He’s watched this sport from it’s inception. He’s been on both sides of it, as a professional surfer and a sup rider. He knows the ins and outs of any surf break and he’s a world-class coach to many of the world’s top surfers.
Beyond that, he cares. He cares about the sport. He cares about the people. And he cares about it’s growth, proper growth not just exploding into mainstream and making all the money you can from it growth. He’s in it for the long haul and I respect that. His agenda is to see the sport of sup surfing grow with integrity and find its place amid the larger world of surfing, alongside professional surfers, respected institutions and more.
So, when Ian “Kanga” Cairns speaks to the heart of sup surfing etiquette, I listen. We should all listen. Here’s his most recent guide on How to be Successful in any Surf line up as a Standup Paddle Surfer. If we all abide by the guidelines outlined here, it may not eradicate the conflict out there, but it sure as hell will simmer it down.