This course was a massive opportunity to improve the standard of Surf Coaching in our region and provide our surfers with the most up to date surf coaching methodology. It was also noteworthy for being the first IOC funded Surfing Coaching course ever held in the world.
The course was made possible through the generosity and support from FASANOC and the Olympic Solidarity funding. Without this the course would never have eventuated. A special mention to Lyndall Fisher for her work in organising the funding as well as producing the manuals and workbooks at the last minute.
Our New Zealand presenter, Lee Ryan, was a wealth of knowledge and his delivery was clear and understood by all in attendance. Lee showed patience with our “island time” approach and delivered a carefully planned format of information.
Participants were invited from our neighbouring countries as well as in Fiji. Bookings came from Guam, New Caledonia, Samoa, Vanuatu and Kiribati. At the last minute several cancelled leaving us with 12 participants. This was made up of 3 from Samoa, 3 from Vanuatu and 6 from Fiji.
The course was conducted at the Rendezvous Surf Resort at Uciwai near Nabila. The camp is clean, provided good accommodation, good food, large grass areas, 35 minutes from the airport, 12 minutes from the surf and friendly helpful staff.
Over the 6 class days participants were shown a variety of topics emphasising safety throughout on power-point presentation, practical demonstrations (on land and sea) and clear instructions. Video analysis was conducted between the group in some good and not so good surf.
Participants had ample time to try the suggested techniques between ourselves, on several young locals and ask questions. Then through feedback and discussion everyone grew to an improved level of presentation of a surf-coaching lesson, beginner through to advanced.
At the completion all participants were left with a workbook, which detailed the 40hrs of surf coaching that now needs to be completed and logged. Once the 40hrs has been completed they will either forward or demonstrate to me that this task has been completed at which stage I will sign them off as completed.
In summary we again thank FASANOC, the IOC, and the ISA for the funding and assistance, to the ISA presenter Lee Ryan for sharing his experience and knowledge and to the countries that can see the big picture in the Oceania region for attending.
Ian “Porto” Portingale