Wave Riding is the intersection of surfer, craft and wave; which happens in a split second. This momentary, affective experience encapsulates the physical practice of surfing. There's a delicate balance between just enough challenge and not too much tension... and that's when we enter the flow state.
Wave Riding. The Soul Surfer Journey
So how does this transfer over to how we teach at Soul & Surf then?
The Soul of Surfing programme delivers skills and techniques with our experienced coaches to set you up as an unconsciously able surfer across four different levels, i.e. you can surf without thinking about it.
Once you become an ‘integrated surfer’ – and by integrated we mean understanding more than just standing on a board – it’s time to move onto the next level.
Advanced coaching methods such as video analysis allow bespoke, actionable coaching at any level
Learning to surf is not linear. It’s a cyclical process. We even made a poster about it ↓
The (cyclical) Soul Surfer Journey
Level 1: Becoming a Beginner Surfer
Learning to Master the Whitewater
Environment Immersion + Safety
Introduction to Wave Riding
Balance + Control
Level 2: Becoming an Improver Surfer
Introducing Unbroken Waves
Transitioning from White to Green
Positioning for Unbroken Waves
Reading Unbroken Waves
Catching Unbroken Waves
Popping Up On Unbroken Waves
Riding Unbroken Waves
Introducing Manoeuvering The Board On Unbroken Waves
Consistency, Creativity and Confidence in Unbroken Waves
The four levels of surfer - click 'more photos' to see some gorgeous illustrations from Coco Steigner
Respect the Ocean. Respect the Environment. Respect each other. Don't be a nob. Have fun.
Level 3: Becoming an Intermediate Surfer
Unbroken Waves: How To Get More & What To Do On Them
'Where’s your stoke?'
Increasing Wave Count
Etiquette In The Line Up/Critical Take Offs
Improving Wave Performance
'Cut Back Clinic' Video Analysis On Intermediate Manoeuvres, Bottom Turns, Top Turns, and Cutbacks
Level 4: Becoming an Advanced Surfer
Maximising Wave Usage, Craft & Surfer Potential Tuition for Traditional Longboarders, Progressive Shortboarders, or Adaptable Soul Surfers
The journey to Conscious Awareness for the advanced surfer uses advanced coaching methods – eg - video analysis – providing a bespoke programme to develop their chosen discipline: longboarding or shortboarding.
Or adapting to different waves and equipment – soul surfers.
At this point you might be a better surfer than your coach - but remember, Kelly Slater has a surf coach.
For more info about our surf lessons, levels and ethos, head over to our Soul of Surfing page.
Everyone - beginner to advanced - needs to know this stuff