Surfing Lessons in Crete with Kalo Surf of the Week 2 - 8 November 2020
We are starting new surfing week on Tuesday with a Western Swell, so we headed to the beautiful beach of Falassarna. The setting is exceptional, with all umbrellas already gone and stored for winter, there was a small lagoon on the beach and the weather was a mix of sunshine and clouds. The waves were 1m to 1.5m in size, just perfect for everybody to enjoy and practice. During the theory part Surfcoach Andy covered safety and basic surfing knowledge. Then he went through dry runs on the beach assigning to each participant a specific maneuver to work on according to their level: Pop-up, Stalling & Trimming and Turns. Then the participants went in the water and had lots of fun enjoying the waves and practicing while implementing some of the newly learned skill. Towards the end of the lesson the group paddled out with Andy where he showed them some further tricks in board handling.
On Wednesday morning the beach break of Falassarna gifted us with small glassy waves and offshore wind, beautiful. The lesson started with a recap of the pop up and stalling & trimming followed by paddling. Everyone learned the proper paddling technique today and then we paddled out together. In the water Andy covered all aspects of this stage of learning to surf: turning while paddling, sitting down on the board, turning around, getting back on the board in deeper waters (over the tail!!!). Part of the group practiced for the majority of the lesson in the white water while the others were further out to catch the glassy waves and started getting into the turn. Andy is confident that tomorrow everyone will turn!!!
On Thursday morning things looked very different on Crete. Overnight a big swell arrived from the North and the surf lessons took place in the bay of Kissamos. The morning group started their lesson with the explanations in safety and communication and then they went right into the water to have as much fun as possible. There were straight long white water lines, perfect for practicing and having a long ride. When it comes to progressing in surfing many repetitions of the same movement patterns is key. Towards the end of the lesson Andy paddled out with Ralf and Ernest to catch a big wave outside. It was seriously impressive and definitely a session to remember!
The afternoon group saw a completely different side of Crete. After two days of easy going conditions that were helpful to learn and establish some movement patterns as well pushing them further in their skills, today it was a completely different ball game. As always surf coach Andy prepared the group for what is about to happen and explained thoroughly the surf spot. You might feel overwhelmed with a new situation in surfing, there it helps to focus on technical aspects and what you want to improve on a specific day: the turn, the cutback, where to surf the wave, which specific part and so on. It was a big plus that we did the paddle training yesterday. Our participants were seriously flashed after this surf session at the bay of Kissamos.
Big big stoke among the participants of our surf lesson today, Friday, 6 November. The swell is seriously big today, probably the peak of the current weather system. Ships are not allowed to sail tonight! With such a swell you need to know where it is safe and fun to go surfing. We went on a small surf trip with our participant to a bay east of Chania that can hold a massive swell. Once arrived on the spot, Andy explained thoroughly how the spot works and then did a bootcamp warm up (his words). On the beach we went through the movement of the turns and individual corrections. This spot also is great for circulating, so we are in and out of the water often and Andy can look head on at the participants and give personalised coaching tips. Our participants had super long rides, made turns and were overall stoked - what else can we say?