Firstly, we need to talk about expectations. It’s unlikely that you’ll be running into the sea, sunkissed hair flying behind you as your perfectly tanned body leaps onto a board. We’re good, but even we’re not that good.

It’s more likely you’ll have your hair plastered to your face, be wearing a wetsuit and be attempting to get into the water without the wind blowing your large foam board from under your arms. It’s also really likely you’ll be having a lot of fun, experience some adrenaline highs and feel really proud as you catch your first wave.

So, here’s what you need to know before your first surf lesson.

You need to be able to swim

Alright, that’s an obvious one, but it’s also really important. Your board is attached to your ankle by a cord, and should this come free whilst surfing, you need to be able to swim to get the board or swim safely back to shore. 

You’re also playing in one of nature’s strongest resources and you need to respect it. If you find yourself drifting away a little or caught in a current, you need to be able to swim back to safety.

It’s a mix of time on the sand & in the water

That might not be quite so obvious in a surf lesson, but it’s totally necessary. It’s much easier to learn the basic surf movements on land than it is in the water. Your instructor will take the time to show you the best ways to pop up on the board, paddle and other movements you need to know before trying it in the sea. The more you practise on the sand, the more you can concentrate on the waves in the water.

On land is also a great (and easier) place to ask your instructor any questions you might have. They’ll give you the basic safety instructions and can give you specifics about the swell that day, the weather and the best spots to catch waves.

You’re going to wipeout

It’s going to happen, there’s no avoiding it – unless you just want to spend your lesson floating on your board as you top up your tan in the Cornish sun. So you may as well know about it. You might even be surprised by how much fun it is.

You might not stand up

Or you might. But it’s not uncommon that in your first lesson you spend your time learning to pop up on your board, maybe kneeling, and definitely falling. However far you get, it’s important to remember it’s the first lesson and with practice, you’ll get there. Trust us, there’s no better feeling than catching a wave and when you do, you’ll not want to stop.

You might be a bit sore in the morning

Surfing is a full-body workout, so yes, your body might feel it a little the day after. But where will you most feel it? Your hip bones. It takes a while for your body to get used to rubbing on a board, and pointy hip bones definitely take the hit in the beginning. But don’t worry. The more you practise the better it gets.

(One more because it’s important) – It’s fun!

All of our qualified instructors will make sure that your surf lesson is as fun as it can possibly be. We’ll do exercises, spend plenty of time practising in the waves and give you ideas of things to do in your own time to improve. It’s common that students love it so much that they want to hire their board and wetsuit after the lesson – which we offer for just £10 more.

In addition to first-time group lessons, we also offer private lessons, lessons designed for couples (sunset included), and surf safari trips. You can find out more info here.

We look forward to seeing you in one of our surf lessons in Newquay soon!

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