Surfing may look easy when you are watching it from the shoreline, but it is one of the most dangerous and strenuous sports out there. Here are a few tips for beginners to stay safe in the water: 1) Don't ever turn your back to the waves; always pay attention to what's coming into the shore. 2) Don't carry your board out into the surf in front of your body (it's likely to flip up in your face and break your nose). 3) Don't surf in conditions that are above your skill level (even experienced surfers need to get rescued sometimes in high surf). 4) Don't try to catch a wave that an experienced surfer is already riding; not only is this dangerous in the water, but you're likely to get punched once you are out of the water! 5) If you feel you are getting carried away by a current, paddle perpendicular to the current and wave for help if needed. 6) The minute you start to get fatigued, come in and take a break; you won't be able to paddle back in safely if you wait until your arms are dead. 7) Get out of the way of the surfers who are riding the waves, they always have the right of way. 8) If you wipe out, cover your head with your forearms as you come up so your board doesn't smack you in the head and knock you out if it went flying. 9) Always be mindful of your board; use a leash and don't let the board go flying into other surfers or swimmers. 10) When in doubt, practice in the whitewater until you get strong enough to tackle the real waves; there's no shame in acknowledging your limitations. Have fun and be safe!