What to bring for a surf lesson.

Location: , , 4:16 pm Tags: ,

What and what not to bring to a Surf Lesson

We see people from all over the world stepping in our shops to enjoy what we enjoy on a daily basis. Sun, surf, beach and amazing scenery.

Surfers are known for their simplicity. Their surfboard, wetsuits..and that’s it! We don’t need more.

When you come to do a surf lesson with us you’re stepping into the world of surfers, those who don’t need much. So what do you need to bring to a surf lesson?

  1. Swimwear. This you wear underneath the wetsuit. Speedo’s, bikini, board shorts, bathing-suit it all works. If you have something tight it will be the most comfortable.
  2. Towel. After a fresh water shower use your towel to dry and get warm. Hint: your swimwear are the veggies, your towel is the wrap. Great way to pack it all in your bag.
  3. Bag. Keep it simple, you don’t need much. Just big enough to fit your towel and swimwear.

We see people bringing a lot of stuff down the beach. Valuable stuff. Ask yourself ‘’why am I going to the beach?’’. We dare to bet it’s to get away from it all. So leave all those expensive items at home, in your hotel or dorm room. Here’s a list of what NOT to bring to a surf lesson:

  1. Jewellery. Wedding rings, grandma’s earrings, anniversary necklace etc. You will lose them!
  2. Watch. We will worry about the time, you worry about how nice the beach is.
  3. Glasses. You can’t surf with them, you are going to fall and so you will lose them. If they are necessary for your sight our coaches can bring a bag on the beach for you to place it in when you are in the water.
  4. Water shoes. Australian sand is nice and soft, no need for water shoes. They also don’t make your surfing easier.
  5. Camera. Wind, sand & salt, the 3 worst things for your camera. Also, you will be so busy surfing you don’t want to worry about your camera or taking photos. At our Bondi location we have photographers snapping your first waves.
  6. GoPro. We could start up a small shop with the amount of GoPro’s we find on the beach every year. Read this story about a GoPro we found at Bondi Beach. Chest strap, head strap it all does not work. Leave it behind.
  7. Goggles. You are surfing, not diving. You do not need goggles unless they are necessary for your sight. Did you know we can open our eyes under water even if it’s salty!

Our friendly staff are always here to help, so if you have a question don’t be afraid to ask and lets go surfing!

Meet Dan

Location: 2:35 pm

Name: Dan Neilson

Age: 37

Job Title: Maroubra Surf school Manager & SUP school manager

What you actually do: Spin wetsuits, dry them and put them away

Surfboard you ride and why: 6.1 because I got it for $50 bucks

Wetsuit you wear and why: O’Neill hyperfreak because it’s warm, flexible and fast to dry.

Best tip for beginner surfers: Be consistent and persevering

Who has been the biggest influence in your life: Mum and Dad

What kinds of things really make you laugh: Dog and Cat movies on facebook

What’s your favourite place in the entire world: Australia, no wait, Indonesia, no, Polynesian islands, no wait….Any island with surfable waves

What’s your biggest goal in life right now: To Build an off the grid home

If you could choose one superpower, what would it be and why: Super Rich! Spend all my money on helping people and specially saving the Great Barrier reef, which a lot of people don’t know produces half of our oxygen and also absorbs carbon dioxide.

How would you describe yourself in three words: Following the flow

Which is more logical to follow—your heart or your head: 50/50

Meet Lars

Location: 2:04 pm

Name: Lars

Age: 27

Job Title: Assistant Manager Maroubra

What you actually do: I still teach lots of lessons every day. When I’m not in the water I am rostering the lessons you book in Maroubra and Bondi, take bookings for Maroubra, open our shop where we sell boards, wetsuits, surf gear and more.

Surfboard you ride and why: For summer I ride a 5’5 fish, it makes surfing summer waves easy and fun no matter what conditions. For the winter season I have a 6’0 to have some fun in the bigger stuff.

Wetsuit you wear and why: O’Neill superfreak 3/2mm for summer, flexible and comfy. For winter I wear a 4/3mm Psycho, warm and dries super quick!

Best tip for beginner surfers: Don’t rush anything, enjoy the ride and take advice from experts

Who has been the biggest influence in your life: Mom & Dad

What kinds of things really make you laugh: Pranking friends or mates at work, Mr Bean and Fawlty towers

What’s your favorite place in the entire world: I really can’t pick one. So here are a few; Pavones – Costa Rica, Pichilemu – Chile, Playa Venao – Panama, Barbados, Huanchaco – Peru, Fiji & ofcourse home at Maroubra – Sydney.

What’s your biggest goal in life right now: To build the happiest life Down Under

If you could choose one superpower, what would it be and why: Breath under water.

How would you describe yourself in three words: Passionate, clown, dreamer

Which is more logical to follow—your heart or your head: Heart 100%!

The top 55 Surf Destinations in the World

Location: 10:47 am

Want to know the best spots to surf?

Byron Bay is one of the world’s most renowned surf destinations in one of the world’s most surf driven countries — AUSTRALIA. The town is blessed with stunning beaches, miles of pure sand, dense rainforest home to a range of native species (including koalas) and 220 square kilometres of surrounding marine park. Byron Bay has been a haven for surfers since it was first discovered in the 1960s and converted from a fishing, whaling and dairy town into a happy, hippy surf heaven.

Check out the top 55 Surf Destinations in the World

Want to learn to surf here?

Written by: Courtney McCaffrey

Meet Paolo

Location: 11:49 am

Name: Paolo Palazzolo

Age: 31

Job Title: Retail/Shop Manager and Senior Coach

What you actually do: My day to day job is to efficiently run the Bondi store and check in centre. I do all the buying of our Retail products including Softboards, Wetsuits and Accessories. I also design all the LGS Merchandise including T-shirts, Boardshorts, Hats and other LGS Merchandise

Surfboard you ride and why: I have a large quiver of boards for all conditions but primarily I ride Shortboards. For sloppy Bondi I ride my 5’10 JS BlacBox2. For good to really good waves under 5ft I ride my 5’9 Channel Islands Sampler Round Tail. For waves bigger than 6ft I ride my Step-up which is a 6’2 Al Merrick Semi Pro KS12. If it is really small I have a 9’1 Hayden Lewis Log. I have a few other old favourites I like to ride when I feel nostalgic. Lastly and most importantly living in Bondi I have two Softboards, a 5’0 Catch Surf Stump and an 8’0 Softlite Chopstick.

Wetsuit you wear and why: I have quite a large selection of wetsuits which is a perk of my job. Mostly I wear the O’Neil O’riginal longsleeve wettie top and boardies if it is warm. For Autumn and Spring my go to suit is O’Neill Hyperfreak Short Arm steamer. When the mercury really drops I go for a O’Neill Psychofreak 3/2 to keep me nice and warm and cosy in the water.

Best tip for beginner surfers: Go Surfing! There is no better practice than going surfing no matter what the conditions are. Every time you surf you learn.

Who has been the biggest influence in your life: Growing up definitely my parents. These days my partner Gypsy and my son Atlas would have the biggest influence on my life.

What kinds of things really make you laugh: Memes, memes and more memes. I tend to find lots of random things funny that my partner Gypsy thinks are mainly stupid. Kook of the Day and KookSlams is always good to brighten up your day.

What’s your favorite place in the entire world: The ocean. Being anywhere in the world in the ocean with fun waves is where I love to be.

What’s your biggest goal in life right now: To be the best Father I can to my son Atlas.

If you could choose one superpower, what would it be and why: The Superpower I would choose would be teleportation like the movie Jumper. To be able to jump anywhere in the world I wanted to be and take people with me.

How would you describe yourself in three words: Friendly bearded legend!

Which is more logical to follow—your heart or your head: Follow your heart. Do what makes you happy in life and enjoy it.


World Oceans Day

Location: , , 3:58 pm

Our Oceans, Our Future

June 8 is World Oceans Day and at Lets Go Surfing we are pretty excited about days like this. Although we believe every day for us is “Ocean Day”, we are stoked an organisation like World Oceans Day highlights to the world, the importance of the Ocean we all are so lucky to surf and play in!

At the moment there are 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic debris in the ocean…But can you feel a change?  Do you hear more people talk and care about our oceans, marine life and the way we do things? At LGS we believe so…

Today we want to shine a light on encouraging solutions to plastic pollution and preventing marine litter for a healthier ocean and a better future.

So what do we do at LGS? (not only today…)  small changes can make big differences

We have always been environmentally aware and caring however, recently we launched a new strategy to become the best Eco Friendly surf school we can be and to try to lead our amazing Surf School industry . Our 2017 initiative is “Leave only footprints”and some of our initiatives will include providing our team of over 80 professional Surf Instructors with reusable coffee cups & water bottles, our staff won’t be using single use coffee cups anymore, or using plastic water bottles, we will work with our partners & suppliers to minimise and hopefully eliminate the acceptance of loads of plastic packaging.

And while we’re on the beach our coaches will start carrying enviro bags during lessons to collect and put rubbish in from the beach and do our part of #take3forthesea and educate our students about the importance of a healthy ocean.

What can you do?

Think about your daily life and the things you use. Get your own take away coffee cup and bring it down your favorite cafe, recycle, make compost at home, pick rubbish up and inspire people to do the same. Think that small things can have a big impact!
We’d love to see your action for World Oceans Day today so do something for the ocean, snap a shot and post it anywhere using #worldoceansday and let us know about it @letsgosurfingaustralia

5 Things to know before buying a surfboard

Location: , , 3:29 pm Tags:
  1. Your level:

Make sure you have a good idea what kind of surf experience you have. Ask yourself a few questions:

– What type of waves do I surf?

– Can I paddle?

– Do I surf unbroken waves or do I stand in shallow water surfing whitewash?

– Do I or will I surf different beaches?

All these factors are important and narrow your search down. Be honest with yourself, we’re not all Mick Fanning or Sally Fitzgibbons. If you need assistance to find where you are with your surfing  please walk in anytime at our surf shop/school in Bondi and Maroubra or Byron Bay. 

  1. How often do I surf?

You know already that surfing takes lots and lots of practice, that’s why we love it so much! Do you or will you surf everyday? Once a week or once a month?

This is a really important factor because it will affect your progression. If you are surfing every day you will improve more and can choose a board that is a bit more challenging. If you will only surf once a week or less you want a surfboard that makes it a lot of fun the few times you surf.

  1. Hardboard/fiberglass or Softboard:

Now you have a good idea about your level you need to decide if you want a fiberglass or a softboard. As a surf school all the boards we sell are softboards.

These days Softlite  or Catch surf  make such good quality softboards with good shapes that we see our coaches surfing more on them than fiberglass boards!

Here is a quick rundown of Softboards. 

– Safer for beginner surfers – Better for intermediate/advanced surfer

– Not easy to ding or break – Fragile, easy to ding or break

– Can have soft or hard fins – Only hard fins

– Catch waves easy – More paddle power required

– Very buoyant – Less buoyancy, gain more maneuverability

If you are looking for a board that can take a few punches, makes you paddle easy in waves and is safer to use (definitely between a lot of other surfers) we highly recommend you to buy a soft board as a beginner/intermediate surfer.

  1. How to decide the size of your surfboard

Are you an adult buying a surfboard? Or a parent buying it for your son or daughter?

Much of the size of the surfboard depends on the surfers level, weight and length. A kid who will grow a lot in the next year or 2 you want to buy a surfboard they can grow with and still surf on in a year’s time. Biggest mistake we see people make is to buy a board that is too small. Yes it fits easy in your car, public bus, under your arm…But you want to be able to surf, so buy what you need in water. All of us started there.

Things you are looking for as a beginner/intermediate surfer in a surfboard:

  • – Length (easy paddling and making speed, helps catching smaller waves)
  • – Buoyancy (the thicker the board the better it floats the more waves you catch)
  • – Width (a wide board gives you more stability and will help you stand up consistently)

Choosing the dimensions of your board can be tricky and we would recommend you to come and see us in our shop and our team can help you choosing the right size board for you.

  1. Try different boards before buying

Do you buy a car without taking it for a test drive? No. Same rule applies for buying a surfboard. At Lets Go Surfing we have a wide range of rental boards and you’re more than welcome to try them out FOR FREE for 30min or rent boards for 1hr, 2hrs, the day or week.

Renting surf boards is one of the best ways to find out what boards works for you and sometimes even better; to find out what NOT works for you.

Swim Sisters test out Speedos Modesty Suits

Location: 3:59 pm Tags: , ,

“Courage doesn’t mean you don’t get afraid. Courage means you don’t let fear stop you.” Bethany Hamilton

I was born and bred in Northern Rivers NSW, the home of my ocean passion, and the land of some of the most incredible beaches in Australia. It’s funny though isn’t it, the process of going to the beach, especially here in Australia, the ritualism and sentimentality, a place of its own rules. You grab your towel, sunnies, thongs and sunscreen, step onto the sand and breath in the air, you feel at home; the prospect of cold, salty water on your face is almost too much to bear. You scope out the beach, to the left a group of ocean swimmers taking the rip up the side out to the back for a peaceful swim, the kids kicking up sand and digging holes for their fortresses, the surf lifesavers manning the beach providing us with protection, and finally there they are, the surfers.

The concept of surfing was always interesting, but I always threw it into the too hard basket, as though I would never be able to do that, or if I did I would look ridiculous trying. Today the Swim Sisters overcame some of our fears, we took the courage we have built from swimming, and today we learned how to surf!! To be honest I was excited but nervous, what if I can’t do this? What if people get annoyed at us? What if, what if what if? But once we arrived the beautiful staff at “Let’s Go Surfing” in North Bondi eased all of these worries. First, they showed us an overview of the beach, one were familiar with for swimming, but not so much for surfing. Surfing was just always there, you know the pocket on the beach where the swimmers weren’t allowed, and as someone who grew up near the beach their whole life, with a dad and brother who surfs, you would think I knew more about it. You know what they say; ignorance is bliss, so not the case for surfing, my ignorance had me missing this awesome life changing sport.

We then headed down to the beach and grabbed our boards for some on beach training, boards on the ground with us lying on top, emulating the coolness of the surfer but lacking the reality of just how hard it really is. My inner voice was saying yes you can do this, my fears telling me I was too big to even get on a board, too uncoordinated to even catch a wave, those darn fears. We finally got in the water for a little laying down wave catching session, off we went, getting through the first bit of whitewash, paddling to the first set of small waves. Finally we reached the second sand bar with some ideal small waves, so turning around, with the wave 2 metres behind us my training rhetoric began, “paddle, paddle, paddle, wave touches the feet, paddle, two, three and chicken wing arms, presto”. These instructions may only make sense to a surfer, but they are elemental in learning whilst not drowning! The first few waves were a bit of a flop, but then something clicked, I got the timing my paddle to chicken wing arms weight shifting ratio had met its prime and I caught a wave all the way into the shore, and one after the other we all got the hang of it!

Today we were especially grateful to have this experience with Lets Go Surfing because we got to try out Speedo’s amazing new modesty suits. I love Speedo, they are durable, practical and most of all understand that we have a job to do in the water. I have been hanging for a modesty range from Speedo for a really long time; they embrace women’s differences and understand that we all have different needs, not to mention they last a lifetime.  

Next, we would head back into land for the standing up bit; you know the bit where we get validated into the surfing hall of fame. So boards down on the beach, lying down, a couple of visual lessons and then a bit of on sand practice and out we went. I was repeating the instruction, feet on the tail, feet flexed, paddle, paddle, paddle, wave on feet, paddle, two, three, chicken wing arms, back foot up, front foot up, surfing. Easy right? Hmmm, not so much. But much to our surprise, a few practice runs, and a few of us were up, yes surfing wave’s baby. I think the most memorable moments were catching the big waves all on our own, just riding with the power of water behind you, cruising off into the sunset, or in our case a few small children and our sister surfers. By this time one of the local dads who was coaching his young son, had decided he would help push us off into the wave. It was at this moment I realised, in the water there is no judgement. The world of surfing lives within its own bounds and community, with its own rules that one must be inducted into with courage and optimism, never give up, no matter how hard, respect each other, no matter who you are.

Unfortunately all amazing things have to come to an end; we reluctantly headed into shore, legs of jelly and arms weak, but our hearts and passion stronger than ever. We have conquered a lot in this swimming group, made up of mums and mothers to be, lawyers, dentists, scientists, uni students and swimming instructors. Learning to surf today just adds to the lists of skills we are obtaining, to the fears we are subsiding, and to the courage we are expressing. In the spirit of the day and because quotes are cliché and inspiring, Sir Kelly Slater summed it up,

“It’s like the Mafia, once you’re in you’re in. There is no getting out”.

So look out world, here come the Surfing Sisters.  

Until next time, hang loose.  

Gina (Surf Mafia recruit April 2017)

The Byron Bay Future Legends

Location: 4:16 pm

The Future Legends Story

The team at Lets Go Surfing were stoked to provide sponsorship for The Byron Bay Future Legends Surf Competition over the ANZAC long weekend. Lets Go Surfing donated a Rash Vest for each participant that they could wear in the competition and then keep afterwards.

Byron Bay locals Yvonne and Max started the ‘Future Legends’ contest 23 years ago, this is how the contestant began:

Yvonne and Max were fortunate on a number of occasions to spend some time at Makaha in Hawaii with Rell Sunn “The Queen of Makaha”.

Rell Kapolioka’ehuka Sunn was a champion surfer and water woman, when her daughter Jan was small, Rell started a contest for kids “The Menehuni” (Legendary mischievous little people of Hawaii, kind of like the Leprechauns) Rell removed the plaques off the many trophies she had won and used the trophies for prizes in her first ‘Keiki” or kid’s contest.

With Rell’s help and encouragement we started a similar contest in Byron Bay, known as the “Future Legends” The Future Legends contest is held in conjunction with the Byron Bay Malibu Club’s Classic each year. Yvonne and I were both foundation members of the club and are life members.

This year 2017 was the 23 rd. anniversary contest. Each year similar to Rell’s, we write and illustrate a colouring in/story book for each child, with subjects ranging from surfing education, surf safety, surf etiquette to keeping the beaches and ocean clean.

Our contest varies a little from Rell’s in so much as we give each child an equal trophy so they are all winners. This comprises of a “Show Bag” type bag which contains a tee shirt, colouring in book, wax, stickers and any other surf orientated goodies we can find.

The Future Legends contest is held in conjunction with the Byron Bay Malibu Classic each year.

Sadly Rell passed away in 1998 after a long battle with breast cancer, so it is our wish to perpetuate this ocean awareness and water wise idea for kids under 12 that she helped us start and as we adore the little ones with all their enthusiasm and energy, we hope in some way the subtle suggestions and warnings in the little colouring book, which draws on our combined 100 years as water man and woman will help keep them safe by being water wise and allow them to enjoy the wonderful healthy sport of surfing….

Max and Yvonne Pendergast.

Bondi Restaurants Case Study with Brenda Miley

Location: 10:51 am

Sunshine, epic food and fun waves!

Tourists love to come to Bondi Beach and spend time in the ocean and learn to surf. They also love to spend time with the locals and do what the locals do which is eat at our amazing restaurants.

At Bondi Beach we are spoilt for choice, from delicious Fish and Chips on the beach to fine dining at Icebergs. Check out Lets Go Surfing’s Founder, Brenda Mileys view on restaurants in Bondi Beach by clicking the play button.

Lets Go Surfing provides half or full day surf tours that include lunch at some fabulous locations.

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