My First Lesson on a Surf Ski
Before I explain what happened at my first lesson, let me give you some background to explain how I got into paddling…
For some years now I have been a member of the Mooloolaba Beach Bums; a group of swimmers that meet daily at Mooloolaba beach for an ocean swim. Many of the swimmers in this group are surf lifesavers and also paddle surf ski’s. A friend of mine bought a ski about 12 months ago and encouraged me to join him. I declined as I was too busy and didn’t want to go through the inevitable learning curve. So I thought ‘that was that’. Well it wasn’t to be…
While swimming one day, I noticed a bunch of my swimming friends on surf ski’s catching runners from the point t Mooloolaba. They were catching rides that seemed to be around 200 metres in length. After swimming, I met up with a few of them at the coffee shop and they were all crowing about the fantastic time they had. Well, that was it, I had to get into the game. That’s where Buck comes int o the picture.
I asked how to get into the sport and everyone suggested I talk to Buck. So I called Buck and he told me to come to a beginners lesson that Wednesday. He said there was no need to join the club yet as I could try before committing to membership and he would provide a ski for me to try. I agreed to meet and I was committed to my first lesson.
When I arrived at the shed on Wednesday, Buck was not there. Glen introduced himself and got me into a ski. There was another lady starting that day so after a few tips from Glen, we made our way to the ramp.
Glen put my ski into the water first. Then he explained how to get into the ski and asked me to just float out and sit in the ski getting used to balancing. Then he turned to help the other lady. When I sat in the boat, I went straight over the other side! I heard Glen say “already” to the lady. I think I might have broken some sort of club record!
Fortunately I had watched a Youtube video on how to get into your ski after falling out. That helped tremendously and after a few attempts I was back int he seat. But, not for long!
I spent the next hour or so putting into practice the basic tips I was given by Glen and Buck (who had since joined us). I still kept falling out but that only gave me more opportunity to practice my remounting.
I am pleased to say that by the end of the lesson I was hooked; even though I spent as much time in the water as in the boat. I decided that I was definitely going to commit to the sport.
That was my first lesson. I have had three more since then and I now don’t fall out at all! It’s amazing how fast you can learn. Having said that, I am told by some very experienced paddlers that you never stop learning and improving.
I look forward to telling you more about my experiences in time. If you have a similar experience to mine, please send me your story and I may publish it on this blog!