The Rad Girl’s Guide to Surfing in Cold Water


Photo by MI OLA Ambassador Susi – @insta_susi

It’s wintertime for MI OLA WORLD Ambassadors living in the Northern Hemisphere. But we’re not defeated. MI OLA’s sisterhood do the thrashing. We strive and reinvent our game to make sure we #GetOutThere even in the most arctic of temperatures.

This week we spoke with ambassador Susi @insta_susi, who lives in the icier climates of Norway. Susi shares her knowledge on staying warm, limber and how to enjoy surfing cold water sessions whilst dreaming of your MI OLA BIKINI.

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Photo by MI OLA Ambassador Susi – @insta_susi



Before Surf

Invest in a great wetsuit. I wear the Xcel Infiniti with integrated hood in 6/5/4mm. The suit fits like a glove, is light and stretchy, and most importantly it keeps me warm. I am super happy with it.

I’ve seen people hang out 4-hours in 0°Celsius (32° F). I managed 2-hours at 4°Celsius (39° F) and came in because my toes got cold.

Infiniti Gear

Photo by MI OLA Ambassador Susi – @Insta_susi.   Infiniti Hooded Wetsuit  &  Drylock Mitten   Both by Xcel Wetsuits

Xcel make 5mm booties I use for me feet. Since my feet get cold the quickest, 8mm ones are on top of my wish list! I also use 7mm mittens from Xcel.

Use cold water wax!

Photo by MI OLA Ambassador Susi @insta_susi

During Surfing

Don’t over do it in the water, but keep warm by being active by paddling for waves and catching them!

Avoid messy days.  Having to put your head under water and getting one-too-many ice cream headaches are not fun! Look for nice long period swells.

Photo by MI OLA Ambassador Susi @insta_susi

About to wipe out? Take a big breath and don’t worry about it. Cold water is harder upon impact and you can’t hold your breath for as long. The bonus of a thicker wetsuit is that all that rubber with the wetsuit will help you float!

Surf with a friend to help you get your second glove and booties on & off when your fingers are too cold to move

After Surf

Get a long-arm surfing towel to use to put over your body while you are changing in and out of your wetsuit. I also have a changing mat to stand on so my feet don’t get too cold from standing on the frozen ground.

Have a hot water bottle or thermos with warm water in the car to bring your frozen bits back to life. Careful the water is not scorching hot. You don’t want to burn yourself.

A hot drink helps to warm your insides up after a chilly surf. Pack a good post surf snack, especially if you are surfing a more remote location.

Wear some functioning wool clothes to put on after surfing.  Wool socks really help to warm up cold toes.

Photo by MI OLA Ambassador Susi – @insta_susi

Interested in joining the MI OLA Ambassador Program?

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