Surfing in Newquay, Cornwall, was ‘Awesome’

Learning to surf has always been on my ‘to do’ list. And I finally got to have a go during a weekend trip to Newquay – regarded as the surfing capital of the UK. It was the most fun I’ve had for ages. I was, as expected, completely awful at it and ridiculously uncoordinated. But this didn’t matter as I was having such a great time.
I arrived at the RipCurl English Surfing Federation Surfschool on a Sunday afternoon for the two-hour lesson and was greeted by a young Aussie girl who stereotypically said ‘awesome’ somewhere in every sentence.
Then we were handed our wetsuits to change into. Getting into one of these was a task in itself.
Luckily, and rather embarrassingly, there were a couple of 11-year-olds to help me! They had already had a lesson earlier that day and were by now accustomed to shuffling into these oh-so-tight outfits.

When everybody was ready the six learners were partnered up in order to carry the surfboards down to Fistral Beach, which was a good ten minutes walk through large crowds.

We circled around our instructor, a South African called Sean, to learn the basics before literally being thrown in at the deep end.

We were first shown how to catch a wave lying on our bellies, so it was basically like bodyboarding.

Sean showed us how to balance our weight in the middle of the board, with our feet tucked under the end, and also how to paddle effectively.

This photo below is OBVIOUSLY not me!

It was really busy, with it being a sunny day in the height of summer-holiday season so it was difficult to avoid bumping into people.

Vice versa, there were some near misses from missile surf boards launching towards my head. But I managed to catch a few waves lying down.

The second part of the lesson wasn’t as successful – as this was the time to try to stand up.

I nearly got to my knees, but by the time I had managed to get anywhere near to dragging up my weight the wave’s momentum had well and truly gone.

By the end of the lesson I felt amazingly exhilarated. Although I didn’t really know what to expect, I certainly wasn’t disappointed.

Even the fact that I must have swallowed half of the sea, I still loved every minute of it.