UP2U Surf School wants your trip in Bali to be safe, so please read the following as it may help you one day.
Big waves have an immense amount of force and should be treated with great respect!
If you go to a beach and it looks or sounds big, it’s probably BIG so don’t go into the ocean. Listen to your heart most of the time and it will keep you out of trouble.
Lateral (also known as "littoral") currents flow parallel to the beach. They range in speed from fast-flowing to subtle movement. These currents pose little threat to the average swimmer, but weaker swimmers can be pulled into rip currents and heavy surf simply by the force of lateral currents.
Rip currents are the major cause of surf accidents. They are characterized by a strong flow of water rushing back out to sea. Rip currents occur when large amounts of water accumulate near the shore due to natural wave action. Since water seeks its own level, the broken waves take the path of least resistance. This powerful flow of water can pull even strong swimmers into deep waters. Generally, the size and strength of the rip currents are in proportion to the size and frequency of the wave action - the larger the waves, the stronger the rip currents. Depending on lateral currents, rip currents can be fixed at one location or can occur at more than one point along the beach. Large rip currents can be recognized by the sandy discoloration of the water.
Backwash usually occurs with high tides on beaches that rise sharply away from the water's edge. Backwash occurs when the water remaining on the beach returns forcefully to the surf beneath later incoming waves. It is particularly dangerous for small children playing near the water's edge. Even in the short distance between breaking waves and deep water, backwash is powerful enough to knock people off their feet.
Shore breaks can occur at high tide when heavy surf conditions cause large waves to break on the beach with little or no water under them. Shore breaks can be particularly dangerous to a swimmer who is caught in such a wave because the wave can slam the swimmer on the beach, causing injury. Shore breaks are the most frequent cause of serious back, neck and shoulder injuries at the beach. Avoid body surfing during shore break conditions.