The main objective of this paper is to characterize the flow field on the front face of an oscillating wave surge converter (OWSC) under a regular wave. For this purpose, the longitudinal and vertical velocity components were measured using an Ultrasonic Velocity Profiler (UVP). In order to explain the main trends of the OWSC’s dynamics, the experimental data were firstly compared with the analytical results of potential theory. A large discrepancy was observed between experimental and analytical results, caused by the nonlinear behavior of wave-OWSC interaction that determine the turbulent field and the boundary layer. The experimental velocity field shows a strong ascendant flow generated by the mass transfer over the flap (overtopping) and flow rotation generated by the beginning of the flap deceleration and acceleration. These features (overtopping and flow rotation) have an important role on the power capture of OWSC and, therefore, analytical results are not accurate to describe the complex hydrodynamics of OWSC.