Y'know, it's as much about the community, playing in the ocean – the stuff around the surf.


With our Soul of Surfing programme we aim to increase the sense of play (not just success) in the water and give a solid understanding of the soul surfing lifestyle. We firmly believe that surfing is for everyone – and that the old ways of coaching needed a bit of, well, a revolution.  So read on for how we approach our lessons, guides, levels and everything in between.


Our soul of surfing programme is designed to pass on our love of all things ocean to you. From wave-riding on all kinds of craft (focused for your level, be that beginner, improver, intermediate or beyond) to ocean awareness and activism, to blue health and how the ocean is good for the soul. 

And this thread is weaved through everything we do at all our locations, whether it's the tropical waters of India and Sri Lanka, the wild, rugged Atlantic of Portugal - or on various pop-ups we have run around the world.

Our Surf Lessons

Soul & Surf is set up with the intention for all surfers to develop. From beginners and improvers to the more advanced, there is a wave to help you develop your surfing and have fun. Whether it is your first surf or you are a seasoned ol’ sea dog, we have tailored surf sessions for all levels.

Our instructors can be as hands on or off as you like; we can hold your hand through each wave if you need us to, or we can hide in the shadows of the wave, giving you tips and pointers where necessary.

Are we a Surf Camp?

We tend to avoid using the term surf camp, because the surf, yoga, dining and holistic experience we offer is worlds apart from the standard  surf camp offering.

A typical surf camp experience would involve simple accommodation, basic catering and is generally aimed at the budget end of the market. We work hard to focus on everything that’s missing at a basic surf camp and consider the whole experience. So some customers have begun referring to us as a luxury surf camp, and that’s a term we are feeling a little more comfortable with. 


India, Sri Lanka, Portugal, Peru, Lombok, or elsewhere...our surf ethos remains the same

Wave Riding. The Soul Surfer Journey

The Soul of Surfing programme delivers skills and techniques with our experienced coaches to set you up as an ‘unconsciously able surfer’ – by which we mean you can surf without thinking about it – across four different levels. The only requirement we have to attend our lesson is to be able to swim.

Once you become an 'integrated surfer' – by integrated we mean you know more than just standing on a board – it’s time to move onto the next level. Each surf session also includes our seven Blue Health principles. 

Instructors & Surf Team

Our wonderful surf team of internationally qualified surf instructors and lifeguards are dedicated to facilitating your improvement. We keep the instructor to pupil ratio high to give you the individual attention you need, and can tailor the lesson plans to each student’s requirements.

Skill Levels

Our lessons break down to four different levels of surfer;

  • the level 1 surfer that is looking to catch their first waves
  • the level 2 surfer that is looking to explore unbroken waves for the first time
  • the level 3 surfer that is looking to improve on their basic manoeuvres
  • and the level 4 surfer who has a lot of experience and is looking to put themselves into more challenging waves, or is finding themselves a little stuck or frustrated

Download our Wave Riding poster for an overview of the levels and how they relate to each other. 

Click the Read More to dive deeper into our level 1-4 lessons and how they can benefit you. 

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Level 1 – Beginner

A complete beginner or someone that has surfed a few times but is still catching unbroken waves.

What will you learn?
  • The absolute basics in a fun, safe and encouraging environment.
  • Safety on the beach and in the white water, how to handle your board and how to negotiate your way through breaking waves.
  • We’ll introduce you to your equipment and explain the basics of a surfboard and what that means to you as a surfer.
  • How to catch forgiving waves and how to understand the basics of controlling a surfboard whilst laying on your belly in the prone position.
  • The techniques to get to your feet and how to maintain stability and build on consistency.
  • Basic manoeuvres in the white water such as speed and control as well as turning right and left on a wave.

Your success will come from your willingness to learn new things and not being afraid to fall.

Theory Sessions

As part of your level one coaching we will run theory sessions on location at the beach, in the hotel as well as in the pool.

  • Currents / rips how to deal with them
  • Different types of waves
  • Swell generation
  • Onshore vs off shore
  • Right vs left
  • Surf etiquette
  • Terminology and radical surfer talk!

Level 2 – Improver

You’ll be an improver or a low-end intermediate, someone that has had some lessons, is catching white water waves on a regular basis and can perform basic turns left and right. You will also show that you can surf in a safe manner.

You may have even caught a couple of unbroken waves and are experienced trimming down the wave.

What will you learn?
  • Advanced safety, specific to the spots we surf as well as the waves that you may surf at home.
  • We will get specific about your stance, your body position and how it will affect your rides.
  • We will work with you to improve your Pop-Up technique.
  • You will improve the efficiency and techniques paddle strokes enabling you to build on your endurance as well as explosiveness.
  • You will learn how to negotiate the inside breaking waves and how to paddle out to unbroken waves.
  • You will learn the difference between white water waves and unbroken waves and learn how to catch a wave before it breaks.
  • You will understand the difference between forehand and backhand or frontside and backside as well as understanding the basics of trimming along a wave.
  • We will use video feedback sessions to help you take your surfing to the next level - looking at and analysing your surfing. Video analysis is the best way to see your surfing, to look at the positives and to see how to correct any mistakes and improve on techniques.
Theory sessions

As part of your level two coaching we will run theory sessions on location at the beach, in the hotel as well as in the pool.

  • Priority & line ups
  • How to get through waves using a turtle roll
  • The difference between a white water (broken wave) and unbroken wave
  • Wave forecasting
  • Surfboards and different forms of surfing

Level 3 – High Intermediate

You will be a high-end intermediate surfer, proficient in the water, able to paddle through waves unassisted and able to negotiate your way around a line up. You will be able to catch head-high waves and can trim left and right on a variety of different waves.

What will you learn?
  • We will search the coast for the best waves of the day and work with you to understand new, more challenging surf spots.
  • We will help you to maximise your wave count and learn how to find the fastest trimming line as well as what type of manoeuvres to perform and when.
  • We will work with you through video analysis sessions to help improve techniques, body positions, position on the wave, carving turns cutbacks and floaters.
Theory sessions

As part of your level three coaching we will run theory sessions on location at the beach, in the hotel as well as in the pool.

  • Improving and speeding up your pop-up to make more critical drops
  • Duck diving
  • ‘Spot X’ - the best place on any given wave for a surfer to take off
  • Wave forecasting
  • Surfboards and different forms of surfing

Level 4 – Advanced

Advanced shredder, better than us! But we’re not just talking short boarders here, we have a passion for all surf craft.

Our level 4 lessons are aimed at the surfer who has a lot of surfing experience but may be a little stuck or frustrated. The surfer will be able to perform in a variety of conditions including some very challenging or less than perfect waves. You should be comfortable surfing a variety of different beach breaks, river mouths, points and reef breaks. The level 4 surfer will be able to do more than just trim along a wave, you’ll be able to control your speed staying in the pocket when needed and speeding through section if required, linking turns and manoeuvres.

What will you learn?
  • We will search the coast for the best waves of the day and work with you to understand the most challenging surf spots for the day's conditions.
  • We want to take you out of your surfing comfort zone to break down and work on specific manoeuvres.
  • Using video analysis, we will work with you to break down each wave, seeing where speed can be managed, manoeuvres linked and turns executed in more critical parts of the wave.
  • We will work with you in taking this new knowledge from the video feedback sessions and applying it to your next surf.
  • We will look at the functionality and style within your surfing. It’s one thing to be able to do a cut back but to make it look good is a different matter!

Our aim with you is to push your surf and open up new possibilities - giving you the tools you need to continue your progression.

Theory sessions

As part of your level 4 coaching we will run theory sessions on location at the beach, in the hotel as well as in the pool.

  • Improving and speeding up your pop-up to make more critical drops
  • Duck diving
  • ‘Spot X’ the best place on any given wave for a surfer to take off.
  • Wave forecasting
  • Surfboards and different forms of surfing

You must be able to swim as a basic requirement to attend our lessons.

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Whatever your experience there is a place, a lesson just for you

We believe learning to surf is not linear. It’s a cyclical process.


Surf Equipment & Preparing For Your Trip

Equipment Available

We have a full stock of boards at your disposal throughout your stay. We’ve got everything from performance shortboards to fun boards, mini-mals, longboards and a good range of beginners foam boards so that whatever your level and however you progress we’ve got the right board for you and the conditions.

We’ve also got all the other stuff you need too – from leashes to wax. Plus we’ll give each of you a Soul & Surf rash vest for your lessons so there is pretty much nothing to bring except for surf/swimwear and water-proof sunscreen. Unless of course you have a favourite board that you just cannot live without (we’re with you on that one).

Before You Arrive

Of course you can simply dash out of work on a Friday night, hop on a plane and be with us by Saturday. But if you can start some preparations before you leave you will really feel the benefit. Here are a few things to get you going before you get to us, particularly if you are not a regular surfer – and you might want to check out one of our resident yogi’s and surfer Rach’s journal post on ‘getting surf trip fit‘ too.


Watch as much surfing footage as possible, get familiar with how it looks to ride waves 
Look for different types of waves and how different surf spots attract different styles of surfing 
Do 10-20 press ups a day for a month before you come 
Go swimming and set yourself targets which are reachable in terms of endurance in the water 
If you have never surfed before try bodysurfing in the sea 
Try skateboarding if you can, longboards and/or carve boards 
Try to build core strength muscles – work ALL muscle groups in the core 
Hold your breath in the bath or at the pool, time yourself and try to extend 
But honestly – the best preparation for surfing, is surfing 


*Please note, none of this is medical advice, consult your doctor to be sure.

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A new approach to teaching surf? Read more about our Soul of Surfing Revolution.

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Kids Surf Lessons

Safety and professionalism are the cornerstones of surf coaching at Soul & Surf. This is even more true when working with kids, we cannot ask our instructors to go beyond what their qualifications and governing bodies advise them to. Here are our guidelines on what surf lessons might be available for your kids:

  • Under 6 — we cannot accept on surf guides or lessons. 
  • From 6 to 12 — lessons are available if you can demonstrate your child’s swimming ability. Please note however that we require one parent or guardian to be in the water supervising each child at all times, since our instructors will have other guests to attend to. The guardian can not join the same lesson while they are supervising the child. 
  • From 12 – 16 — lessons are available with a parent or guardian supervising at the same beach. The guardian may join the same lesson if they wish.

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