Are you thinking about taking your kids surfing and introducing them to the wonderful world of wave riding?
If your answer is yes, there may be many questions popping into your head. For example “What age is appropriate to start surfing?” or “How do I make sure that my child is safe?” In this article we will try to fill in the blank spaces.
Kids are exceptional learners, like little sponges they soak up every bit of information they get, especially visual input. That’s why there is generally no age deemed “too young” when it comes to surfing. Nevertheless your child should be able to swim. Little Johnny doesn’t have to be the next Michael Phelps but he should be able to keep his head above water for a couple of minutes.
Swimming in the ocean is very different from swimming in a pool and it is perfectly natural to be afraid of waves crashing onto the beach. It is important to acknowledge that this is not necessarily a fear but simply a healthy respect for an unfamiliar environment.
Surfing can do wonders to establish confidence in the water, especially in the ocean. Kids don’t only learn to negotiate breaking waves and potential dangers such as rip currents but also learn to enjoy this wonderful part of nature and experience it in a playful way.
There is also no “too small” in surfing. Nowadays there is a whole range of surfboards that suit even the smallest grommet. The smaller the child however, the more attention he/she demands in the water. This is where a surf school can be a great option to ensure your child learns in a safe surfing environment.
Besides boosting your child’s confidence and ability of overcoming fears, surfing is also physically demanding.
Similar to swimming and other water sports, surfing is tiring and can be a great way to balance their energy levels. This means an easily excitable child can becomes calmer while a very calm kid can becomes more active. Furthermore, an hour of surfing wears your kid out, building a foundation of fitness in all fields (endurance, strength, flexibility and coordination).
We talked to one of our GOSURF mums Jodie about her little man who started surfing with us on a regular basis about 6 months ago and asked her to give us some feedback.
GOSURF: Why did you decide to get Miche into surfing?
JODIE: There was an ad for the surfing holiday program and Miche wanted to give it a try.
GOSURF: Do you notice any changes about Miche over the time or immediately?
JODIE: Yes, he is much more relaxed after surfing. His energy level seems more balanced. He also started checking the weather forecast every weekend to see what the conditions will be like. He loves coming down here.
GOSURF: Was he afraid of the water or has he always been a water baby?
JODIE: No, he was a bit afraid at first, especially of bigger waves. His confidence grew a lot since we started out and he feels way more comfortable out there. He benefits a lot from the small group sizes.
GOSURF: What do you like about the way Go Surf teaches?
JODIE: You guys are professional. You look after the kids. Not just in the water but also if the conditions are too big and dangerous you don’t hesitate to cancel a lesson to keep our kids safe. And I really like that you teach them about ocean awareness. Especially with those boys who lose their focus pretty quickly. You give short and precise instructions which work great for them. Other than that for me as a mum it is a good to have a regular contact with you. I never had a problem getting hold of you.
GOSURF: Thanks Jodie