After presenting the question of how to get more speed from your surfboard to several surfers young and old, I have been able to figure out how to make any of my surfboards go faster down the line. You might wonder as to why I would be concerned about generating more speed, but the more speed I can generate from the surfboard the more maneuvers I should be able to preform. The better I will float over sections of the wave that are slower also.
One of the first things I learned from surfing in Florida, and being a Lifeguard at one of the most popular surf destinations in North America, is on smaller waves do not make a formal drop and bottom turn, you will lose speed.
Many of the pro surfers that I surfed with and talked to told me about the second drop for gaining more speed over all. So, to make this maneuver a simple task you catch the wave and you are almost turned completely in the direction that you think that you are going to ride the wave. You can also catch the wave and turn before you have reached the bottom, stay high on the wave near the lip. If you are surfing on a thruster you can actually wiggle the tail or pump the wave right after you turn.
In the next section after you have turned and did a few pumps you will have gained speed, now go down with that speed and do a bottom turn and come back to the top and hit the lip. When I have tried this technique, it took some practice, but it will increase your speed, so be ready. When you stay high on a wave that is larger, you can get pitched by the wave easier, so this is not a move to take lightly.
Many times I have been told to get a different shaped surfboard for the type of waves I was surfing and the type of maneuvers I wanted to do. Sure, I was some what hesitant, but as I looked around I would see other surfers surfing the way I wanted to surf that seemed to be of similar weight and stature riding the other type of board. So keep your eyes open, sometimes knowledge can make up for lack of experience. If you pay attention to what type of surfboard shapes and the size many of the people are surfing on at your surf break, you will know what works best in that area. This can help with the learning curve most of the time.
Keep the bottom of your surfboard clean. I swear when I use car wax on the bottom I can tell the difference. The wax makes the surfboard slippery and offers less resistance to the water which adds up to more speed!
It takes practice and diligence to be able to pull off some maneuvers. It has always helped me to visualize myself surfing a certain surf break. Just imagine your self surfing the break and doing the moves you want to do. Catching plenty of good waves. You might be surprised how this little tip can improve your surfing talents!