Surfing Week No 38 - September Surfing in Crete, Greece
Surfing lessons from 20 to 26 September 2021 -
September 2021 has everything in stall for us! In the beginning of the week, we had the third heatwave in Crete for this summer, with temperatures over 30 degrees and hot nights. A heatwave always means no winds and no waves. Then in the night from Wednesday to Thursday came first cooler weather, then the waves arrived before the wind and finally strong wind hit the north coast of Crete!
On Thursday, 23 September the waves were still medium sized at the beginning of the lesson and gradually grew in size while the wind picked up! The first part of the beginner lesson the whole group stayed in the whitewater and learned or refreshed catching waves and gliding on a surfboard either in the prawn position or popping up. Also stalling & trimming and/or the turn was on the menu for the first part of the lesson. After a small break first timer Olga learned the pop-up, while the others learned paddling technique, how to get through the wave, how to react accordingly and how to look at the wave while catching it. By the end of the course the waves were quite big and nicely organised, ideal for having long rides towards the left or the right!
In the afternoon we had our intermediate surfing lesson and paddled out all together. Before we headed out, surf coach Andy prepared our surfers by explaining parts of the wave and how the bay works on this particular day (channel, points of reference and peak). The waves were big and the wind quite strong on this afternoon. On the beach the dry runs were pop up, turns and weight distribution on the surfboard. Bastian and Lisa really benefited from their surf skate session the other day, improving their back-side turns and pumping for gaining speed. Christine had a super long ride today!
On Friday, 24 September the conditions for surfing were the other way around. The early morning belonged to the intermediates while the afternoon with more mellow waves were reserved for the beginners.
In the morning our intermediate surfers surfed back-to-back. So we made sure to do a cool down after the afternoon session the day before and to start this day with an extensive warm up. The group paddled out together in the bay of Kissamos while using the channel on the right side of the bay, crossing over to the peak, catching waves and surfing to the left or the right. Andy and Prodromos helped with keeping the position in the water and choice of waves. Our participants made great improvements in their take-off and performing turns!
In the afternoon the wave were much more mellow, more suitable for the beginner group to go through the exercises in a calm fashion. First time surfers Vanessa and Felix were introduced to safety, basic board knowledge and board handling in the water. There is a variety of exercises that we like to go through to make you familiar with your equipment and the waves before you attempt to pop up on the surfboard. After the break they learned the pop-up! Our other surfers trained surfing skills according to their own individual level: catching waves and popping up, having longer rides, performing turns, paddling out and catching waves while paddling, choice of wave and timing.