Photo Credit Grant Saltwater Times
When did you discover your love of surfing?
How did you progress your surfing in the UK?
When did you first discover Surf South West?
That was about four years ago. I was supposed to go on holiday with a friend but she cancelled last minute. I was wondering what to do when something online popped up about a Surf South West Beach Lifeguard Qualification Course. Because I had grown up in the landlocked Czech Rep I really hadn’t learnt anything about the Ocean. I wanted to learn more and discover about rips etc. I booked myself on the five day course and then the guys at Surf South West asked if I’d like to extend it and do the two day Surf Instructor course too. At first I said no as I thought I wasn’t good enough a surfer, but they filled me with confidence and I eventually agreed. The rest is history – I became qualified! It wasn’t without it’s difficulties though. I failed the swimming test the first time as I had an injured shoulder. I returned to retake the test a month later after I had undergone some rehabilitation and extra training. I passed. For anyone wanting to take the course now, I would say just go for it … don’t be put off and never give up on your dream.
Photo Credit @waterlifegallery and @hugovalenteoficial
How as your Surf Instructor career progressed?
Since then, I’ve been coming down as much as I can, every weekend sometimes. Last year my London job became part time which meant I could spend more time down here at the school putting my hours in and helping Yvette Curtis with her Wave Wahine sessions which I adore.
Have you any particular projects that you would like to pursue as a Surf Instructor?
I am very much about mental health. My father died by suicide over six years ago and another member of my family suffered abuse during her lifetime. I guess that’s why I love helping Yvette Curtis with her North Devon Against Domestic Abuse surf sessions. It would also be great to start a project here to help men and women in the area who are suffering from mental health issues.
Maybe there is something that you can organise through Surf South West? Would you like to start?
Yes, definitely. I am currently on a course using Breathwork to help with anxiety and mental health. It’s so powerful and such a natural technique that costs nothing. We can’t control everything in our lives, but we can control our breath and it has fantastic results. Once I’ve finished this course maybe there is something we can organise at Surf South West to help people with their mental health … Will and John are supportive of this idea, so watch this space.
And watch this space we will.