Back in January, I visited friends in Italy and Switzerland. One of the great things about our English Language and Surf School is meeting wonderful people from all over the world, and making new relationships and staying in touch long after they have gone back home.

Hugo, a kite surfer and ex-student from Switzerland, had put me in touch with a friend of his called Greg, who is involved with the Swiss Surfing Association. I know. But they don’t surf in Switzerland. Unless there are waves on the lake of course, then they’re all over it! In fact, they are a very committed bunch of surfers who travel all over Europe fairly regularly, hunting for waves. The standard of surfing is surprisingly high (which I also talk about in my blog about surfing in Italy), and they are always keen for new experiences and opportunities to surf.

I spent a few hours with Greg and his colleague at the University of Lausanne talking about the possibilities of working together and what we could offer in terms of courses. We established there was a lot of enthusiasm for experiencing some bigger wave surfing, and real interest in being coached by experienced big wave surfers and coaches. These guys are pretty hardcore and actually enjoy the cold water that the rest of us try and escape from in the winter!

On returning to the UK, I had a chat with Adam Griffiths  about running a winter course with big wave surfer Tom Butler, for the Swiss surfers. We’ve come up with an awesome programme that is designed to push the surfers which will improve technique, fitness and ability. We’ve included some yoga and tai chi as well as some pool and jet-ski training.

Here’s an itinerary of the course that will run in October and again in January:

Sunday: arrive in Newquay at the surf lodge. Meet the coaches and teachers and have a briefing about the expectations of the week, individual experience and ability. Q&A

Monday: first surf session with coaches*. Lunch. Pool training – breathing techniques

Tuesday: yoga session. Free surf. Lunch. Jet-ski session

Wednesday: guided surf session with coaches. Lunch. Qi-gung/meditation

Thursday: guided surf session with coaches. Lunch. Jet-ski session

Friday: yoga session. Surfboard factory visit. Lunch. Guided surf

Saturday: Qi-gung/meditation. Guided surf. Lunch. Guided surf/jet-ski

Coaching by experienced big wave and competitive surfers Tom Butler and Adam Griffiths. Both are also qualified beach lifeguards and ISA instructor/coaches. Accommodation in surf lodge with facilities to hang wetsuits and store surfboards. Views of Fistral Beach, close to town centre, shops, bars, restaurants. Self-catering basis but option for half-board.


We are really excited to be running this course, and we’re looking forward to providing tailored courses for international students and surfers.