Bantham Surfing Academy

FAQs

  • Do the lessons include the equipment?
    Yes, Surfboards and wetsuits and boots are all inclusive in the costs. We also issue gloves and hoods in the colder months. You are welcome to bring your own equipment.
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  • Can we keep the kit after the lesson has finished?
    After the lesson, we ask that you return the equipment. However if you want to hire equipment from us to practise in your own time, then we can arrange this for a small charge. Just check out our Surf Hire page for details.
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  • After taking a beginners lesson, will I need any more lessons?
    Yes, if you want to improve at a much quicker rate.The first lesson gives you the basics, gets you standing up on your board in the white-water surf zone, keeping you as safe as possible while having lots of FUN. If you want to progress to the BACK and ride unbroken green waves, then you would require more lessons. Usually 4-6 lessons is enough for someone to master the basics and be ready to go out and practise on their own.It may be advisable to take a couple of practise sessions with a coach to monitor your progress and ensure your safety , you should always be aware of the conditions and seek advise from the lifeguards if unsure or unfit or a child. Please check out the Lessons and Courses page for more information on our courses.
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  • How many lessons do you recommend?
    Once again this is down to your time, budget, commitment, fitness levels and aspirations etc. For a beginner we would generally recommend at least 2 or 4 lessons to start off, this would allow for reasonable progression. However, for a more fulfilling development with a view to keep surfing for the rest of your life, a 5 or 6 lesson course is advisable, at the end of this it is normally possible to get to a level where you could go out on your own and practise your skills. From here on you may want to take the occasional IMPROVER lesson followed by INTERMEDIATE to ADVANCED courses.
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  • How many lessons a day do you recommend on a course of lessons?
    This depends on your time available. Surfing is a strenuous sport so it is best to take one lesson per day enabling you to be fresh and ready for the next day. If you do need 2 lessons in a day then you should take a morning lesson at 10am and the afternoon session at 16h00. This will give you a plentiful rest between.
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  • How old do I need to be?
    We take children from 8 years and over. There is no upper age limit, its never too late to start. All under 18’s must have their booking/ enrolment forms signed by a parent/ guardian before they can take part in a lesson.
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  • Do I need to be able to swim?
    Yes! We do stipulate that all participants must be able to swim 50 metres (two lengths of a pool).
    This is a basic requirement for obvious safety reasons. All customers must complete a course enrolment / declaration, stating that they can swim this distance. (Parents/ guardians to sign for under 18’s). You will be declined if you cannot swim the required distance.
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  • What if I have a medical issue, can I still take part?
    All customers must complete the course booking/ enrolment form prior to the session. This gives us information on medical info etc; it is not disclosed to any 3rd party. Please contact us in advance if you have any concerns about your health.
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  • I have been surfing for a while, and I don’t want beginner type group lessons, what else can you offer?
    Even Pro surfers need coaching. We offer IMPROVER , INTERMEDIATE and ADVANCED courses and coaching.We would build a LESSON PLAN to suit your specific area of need . The range of possibilities is large , so you may want to do a course rather than a lesson. We can cater for a first time novice to a competitive level surfer. Our coaches are highly qualified with BSA coaching accreditations as well as experienced surfers and sportspersons of a high calibre. We will be able to give you top quality, professional coaching at all levels.
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  • What happens if the surf is too big, dangerous or too small / flat?
    We have a few options: If the surf is too big or too small and the conditions dangerous and we cannot run a lesson then you will be given 3 options.
    • Your lesson will be re-arranged for another convenient time /day.
    • We may be able to relocate to another nearby beach.
    • You will be given a credit voucher for future lessons.
    • You will be refunded.
    For further details please refer to our Refund and Cancellation Policy below.
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  • Isn't the sea really cold?
    It depends on the time of year you come - we've surfed in just shorts in the summer and in the winter a winter suit does fine. All lessons are inclusive if equipment and in winter (and spring or autumn if required) we also provide boots and gloves to keep you toasty and warm, as well as good quality winter wetsuits.
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  • Do I need to book?
    It is preferable to book in advance. If you leave it until the last minute or just drop by there is no guarantee that we will be able to fit you in. Many days particularly in the height of summer can be fully booked. We also work to strict coaching ratios so this places limitations upon us with staffing levels. The earlier you can book the better, this will ensure your place and will make our life a lot easier in organising resources such as coaches, equipment etc.
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  • How do I book?
    You send an enquiry email on our contact us/ enquiries page, or call our answer phone and leave your booking.
    We will check for availability and then at the first opportunity get back to you. we endeavour to answer all enquiries within 12 hours. If you wish to proceed with your booking, you can call us on 01548 853803 or complete a booking form online. Depending on the type of booking, a deposit may be required; this is easiest over the phone, via debit or credit card, or via internet banking. Some bookings especially large groups will require full payment 14 days before arrival. After booking, a booking confirmation will be emailed or posted with all the information you require.
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  • Are the Instructors qualified?
    Yes, all our coaches are well qualified. They will have a minimum British Surfing Association Level 2 Surf Coaching Accreditation. All the coaches are qualified Beach Lifeguards and hold First Aid certifications. This is an integral part to gaining full Surf coach status. See The Team for further info/ biographies of all our staff.
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  • Do you have a Child Protection Policy?
    Yes. We have a formal written policy in place and the staff are all trained and aware of issues when teaching children. All of our coaches are CRB checked.

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  • What are your teaching ratios?
    We operate according to BSA surf coach and school guidelines: Novice / Beginner groups, up to low level Improvers. 10 : 1 max. 5 : 1 ideally. Progressor / Intermediates; 5 : 1 max. Advanced; 3 : 1 max ( usually 1 on 1 ) Our ratios will always take into account group ability, group experience, age, surf conditions & tide.

    Certain times of the year, for example weekends in August, can get very busy, but we will always endeavour to keep our ratios as low as possible.
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