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“amazing”
Review of Surf South West

Surf South West
Ranked #2 of 12 things to do in Croyde
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Surf South West run surfing lessons, surf courses and surf holidays at Croyde Bay and Saunton Sands in North Devon. Mission Learn, Improve, Excel Company Overview In 1996 Darren Burrett, an established British Surfing Association instructor with many years surfing and coaching experience, fulfilled his lifelong ambition to run his own north devon surf school. From these small beginnings, Surf South West is now internationally recognised as a provider of surfing lessons in Devon and surf holidays in Europe, Costa Rica and Africa. We were the first surf school to be awarded level 4 status by the British Surfing Association. This is the highest level attainable, and is awarded in recognition that Surf South West has the highest standards of surf coaching. We have achieved 'Approved Surf School' status for all our years in existence and all our instructors are also qualified beach lifeguards.
Reviewed 15 August 2014

me and my family had a weeks worth of lesson booked we had an amazing time me and my uncle being first timers had no clue what to do but the staff (Maddie,max and john) where great and by the end of the week we where able to stand up confidently.

Thank Kris C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"mid week"
in 26 reviews
"saunton sands"
in 38 reviews
"great fun"
in 41 reviews
"whole group"
in 8 reviews
"my daughter"
in 26 reviews
"these guys"
in 26 reviews
"thank you so much"
in 8 reviews
"great introduction"
in 6 reviews
"many thanks"
in 11 reviews
"next year"
in 18 reviews
"feel welcome"
in 6 reviews
"year olds"
in 6 reviews
"catching waves"
in 6 reviews
"two hours"
in 6 reviews
"great location"
in 7 reviews
"friendly instructors"
in 6 reviews
"excellent tuition"
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427 - 431 of 522 reviews

Reviewed 15 August 2014

Brilliant week at surf south west. With two brilliant instructors John & Maddie, learnt so much though out the week. Would definitely recommend surf south west to anyone.

Thank kayleeandrews
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 August 2014

My 14 year old son has just had an excellent lesson with Andy on Saunton Sands beach. The surf was pretty good so lots of techniques put into practice. Andy was great and we hope to return next week for another lesson.
Good value for money as wetsuit and board is supplied along with the lesson.

Thank 411maria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 August 2014

Booked what we thought was an intermediate class to find 7 students of very mixed ability (3 beginners) with 1 instructor who struggled to facilitate the group. My 11 year old who was the only one who could stand up received no feedback at all during the session. When we spoke to the school about how disappointed he was, we were told that he should have booked a 1:1 and were in fact lucky as the group size was smaller than normal, which was missing the point entirely. However as a coach to the GB team, the school has no concerns about their quality... In conclusion; very expensive surf board hire!

Thank Rachel R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John E, Manager at Surf South West, responded to this reviewResponded 18 August 2014

We are sorry that Ollie didn’t feel like he received the feedback that he wanted during his most recent surf lesson with us. We do take our quality of coaching very seriously and feel that we have a team of highly qualified and experienced surf coaches.

When you informed us that you felt let down by the feedback Ollie received in his session, his coach was very keen to come and speak to you face to face and discuss the feedback Ollie had received and what his focus should be aimed towards. Ollie’s coach was very keen to speak directly to you, firstly so they could learn from your thoughts, but also try to provide you as a parent with some feedback to pass on.

Ollie was placed in a group of other young surfers that all had previous surfing experience in order that the coaching was pitched at the correct ability level. It would appear that once in the sea the other surfers were not as competent as Ollie and sometimes a surfer developing more rapidly than others can sometimes feel they have been under coached.

One point that our instructor would like to clarify is that Ollie did receive 25 minutes of in-depth coaching on the beach prior to heading into the sea and so we feel that the comment regarding ‘expensive surfboard hire’ slightly unfair. During this coaching session Ollie was given a lesson on gaining longer rides and how to distribute his weight on the board to gain more speed while working on control. This is the usual progression for a surfer who is already able to stand up and classifying themselves as an ‘intermediate’.

During the post-lesson discussion with you the mention of 1 to 1 coaching was offered as a recommendation for the future as this is one way that it is possible to guarantee that a surfer is coached 100% of the time by one instructor. Inevitably in a group lesson there are times when a coach needs to offer feedback and instruction to other members of the group. We have always adhered to the Surfing GB statutory ratio of no more than 8 students to 1 instructor and on this occasion there were 7 students with one instructor.

As it is something that we always try our best to avoid, we are very disappointed that Ollie has had a negative experience, particularly as you said that it was his choice to surf again with us after having a positive experience with us during a previous lesson in 2013.

We will certainly take on some of the points that you have raised both on here and during our conversation at the surf school and strive to ensure that we use it to improve our performance.

We wish Ollie all the best with his surfing and hope to see him in the sea in the future.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 13 August 2014

I've always wanted to have a go at surfing but up until last week had never had the opportunity. We were on a camping holiday in Croyde and a fellow camper recommended Surf South West so I booked a session, which included board and wetsuit hire. The lesson lasted for 2 hours, 15 minutes of which was on the beach covering safety and the basics, the rest of the time was in the water putting it into practice. My instructor Joe was an excellent teacher, calm, clear and encouraging. I had a fantastic time and when we return to Croyde next year I'll definitely book a block of lessons. Top marks!

Thank Ian O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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