Another beautifully lost dreamer with an incurable case of wanderlust.

Salty n Stoked

I’ve lived in this beautiful surf town for almost three years. I am mesmerised by the surfers pretty much everyday, yet I’ve never actually tried it myself. Let’s face it, surfing is really cool. Riding those turquoise waves; gliding along the surface and making it look completely effortless. Having dolphins frolicking in the water around you, wearing those super sexy rash suits and basically being a really fit beach bum. I’ve always fancied myself as a pro surfer, but I can’t help feeling like I missed that boat a long time ago! However, I’m not going to be a pessimist, so I thought it was time to give it a go. I brushed up on my surf lingo, made sure I could do the shaka (rather than the rock on gesture I often wave around by mistake) and booked on to a lesson with Stoked.

We met the Stoked van at Sharpes Beach and got into our rashies. I’d like to emphasise I have never surfed before. I’ve never even carried a surfboard, so that was the first challenge! But once we were down at the beach I felt super excited and couldn’t wait to get in the water. The instructors, Hayden and Joey, were awesome. They were super pumped to take us out and they definitely knew what they were talking about. Their love for surfing was very clear. We did a group warm up, learned a really easy three step maneuver to stand up on the board (on the sand) and were given a safety briefing. It was the first time I actually understood anything about rips, so that was really beneficial in itself! They boys were frothing and it was our turn to give it a go!

The water was refreshing; a great Sunday morning wake up! Walking out to the waves was hilarious, but once I got used to when to jump over the waves it was fine! I fell off the board a fair few times to begin with, which was expected! But then, I stood up and actually rode a little baby foamy wave! I was STOKED! I know I’m not up there with the pros yet, but standing up and riding the wave into the shore felt incredible. It gave me the confidence to go back out there and do it again and again and again! I stacked heaps more and swallowed way too much saltwater, but the thrill you get when you can actually do it is so addictive. I loved the way that we all cheered each other on, it was really nice to see the other beginners progression and how happy they are when they nailed it. Hayden and Joey were helping some of the students stand up and giving out high fives when they saw us on our feet! They also gave me some good tips for holding the board while walking into the ocean, my body placement paddling and foot placement when getting up, which really helped me. Once I put those into place I was standing up on most of my attempts. By the end of the session, I was wet, salty and completely exhausted! My face hurt from smiling; I felt so awake, completely content, absolutely buzzing and really proud of myself.

The class was seamless and the vibe was amazing. Everyone radiated positivity and had so much fun! I cannot wait to get back out on the waves, after a few more lessons of course! A huge shout out to the guys at Stoked who have fueled my passion for surfing! You guys are awesome.

Photo credit goes to Anna, thanks for the epic shots.

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