Stay at our Surf House in Sri Lanka and get qualified as a ISA Level 1 Surf Coach.
For surfers looking to start a career in surf coaching and looking to qualify somewhere tropical, then this is the course for you! The qualifications included are the ISA Level 1 Surf Instructor award and the ILS Water Safety award, which combined together enables you to work as an instructor around the world.
What to Expect
We base ourselves at our Surf House in Ahangama, on the South-West of Sri Lanka, the perfect location at this stage of the season. Your accommodation is a Single, double, twin or triple-share room.With your airport transfers, accommodation and meals organised, you can fully focus on your course.
Your Course Presenter, Tim Jones | Surf Insight: It's fair to say that given Tim's vast experience in developing and delivering surf instructor courses in Sri Lanka and around the world, you're in the best hands to learn from and gain your qualifications.
Tim has been surfing for over 50 years and coaching surfing for over 35 years. He has been delivering Surfing Instructor Courses for 26 years having began as a Trainer / Assessor for the British Surfing Association in 1991 and was National Coach for Wales.
Surf Camp Accommodation
Trip Leaders For Duration
All Surf Transport
Five Nights Supper
Surf Instructor Course
Here you'll find a day by day breakdown of your course.
Upon arrival you will be greeted at the airport by one of our drivers and driven to the Surf House. Here you will be introduced to the team and given time to settle in before we tuck in to your first Sri Lankan Curry :)
ISA Level 1 Surf Instructor Course (2.5 days)
Wake up and meet the group for breakfast, before hitting the classroom (beach!) with Tim Jones and his team to undertake your 2.5-day ISA training course. Tim wil take you through all the learning modules and assessments, breaking for lunch back at the surf camp. The training day will round up in the late afternoon, then you can chill at the camp (we always have an amazing feast for dinner), check out the local scene, or head to Mirissa for an evening out!
ILS Water Safety Course (2.5 days)
Straight after your ISA training, your Water Safety training will kick off for 2.5-days. This will be a mixture of theory and practical, learning the essential life saving skills required to work as a surf instructor.
The course is over and you can catch your breath! This is a good chance to ask any final questions to the training team, and get all your work signed off. With the day to spare, this is the perfect time to unwind and get some waves. We will be sure to have a final feast for the whole crew!
After an epic week in Ahangama, it's time to get out there and start coaching! For those heading back to the airport, we will arrange your transfers, and for those travelling on around Sri Lanka we will give you all our advise and recommendations for where to surf next.
In order to work as a surf instructor, you require both an ISA Surf Instructor qualification, as well as an International Life Saving Water Safety Award. We have combined the ISA Level 1 course with the ILS Water Safety Course in order to create a 5-day course that will allow you to work around the world as a surf instructor.
In order to take this course, you must have the skill level and fitness level required to gain the qualification during the course week. Surfing wise, you need to be able to paddle out back, duck diving when required. You must be able to read the water and paddle in to waves, catching unbroken green waves consistently and performing basic monoeuvres, trimming both left and right.
Prior to attending a course, participants must have completed a timed swim of 200m completed in less than 5 minutes in a pool no shorter than 25m.
ISA Level 1 Surf Instructor Course: The International Surfing Association (ISA) Level 1 is the most internationally recognized Surfing Instructor award. This award is the foundation of your future surf teaching so we approach each module of the course in a way that motivates and inspires you to be the best.
- Module 1: The role of the coach
- Module 2: The safety of the surfer in your care
- Module 3: The equipment for the beginner surfer
- Module 4: Coaching methods
- Module 5: Skill development
- Module 6:Program planning
This qualification is internationally recognised and allows you to teach surf lessons anywhere in the world. This section of the course takes 2.5 days to complete.
Once you have completed (and passed) the course you must gain 20-hours surf coach shadowing experience, before you can deliver surf lessons single handedly. We can help you to find these hours in Sri Lanka after the course, or offer hours at our school in Cornwall (Mar-Oct), or you can book hours elsewhere.
ILS Water Safety Course: The International Lifesaving Federation (ILS) is the world authority for Life Saving this course is devised to perfectly fit the surfing instructor’s needs.
In the ISA / ILS Water Safety Course we deal with the incidents, conditions, and techniques you will normally come across when teaching and coaching. The course format has an open discussion and dialog between trainers and candidates, with practical hands-on learning.
- Module 1: Basic surf safety awareness
- Module 2: Hazards
- Module 3: Basic ocean safety and awareness
- Module 4: Instructors duty of care
- Module 5: Basic First Aid
- Module 6: Basic immediate emergency care and CPR
- Module 7: Board rescue
- Module 8: Signals
All your course material will be provided to you on arrival in Sri Lanka, you're not required to bring any other kit apart from your surfboard. This section of the course takes 2.5 days to complete.
The video below shows you what level of surfer you must be at to complete the course.
What past riders say
Fun waves and the friendliest people - simply the best surf trip ever.Will Jessup
This was one of the best vacations of my life! Surfed a lot, met amazing people and there was a great atmosphere at the surf camp. Beautiful beach right in front of you and the surf camp is situated in a very authentic and local area. Max, Angie and Lee were amazing, ready to meet everybody's needs and create a friendly, chilled out and sparkling vibe.Elena De Besi
I had a great time in beautiful Sri Lanka, surfing in clear blue warm water and making new friends, shame it was all over too quickly!Pat Porter
Sri Lanka is beautiful with blue green sea, unspoilt beaches and perfect waves. Two weeks of paradise with amazing people, eating fantastic food and drinking arrack. Partying from sunset to sunrise...The surfing was pretty sick too. Thank you!Siobahn Hill
Sri Lanka - friendly and beautiful with the funnest waves! Great place to explore and build up confidence in the waterMari O'Connor
My TTRide trip to Sri Lanka was just insane! The country is absolutely incredible, all of the people I met were super fun and friendly and my surfing ability has come on so much. I can't wait for my next TTRide adventure!Ellen Rudge
Fantastic trip and a great atmosphere throughout the entire time. I’ve met so many great people on this trip, with whom I hope to stay in touch and reconnect in the future. I was lucky enough to be put in a single room, which was a bonus and made a huge difference to the overall experience. Great vibes at Sion Surf camp, amazing time and great staff there; their BBQs are legendary by now. Everything was well organised before the trip and during the entire stay, and Max and Josh made sure everything went smooth, were very responsive to anything we have raised with them, or whenever we have asked any questions and also well connected with our group. It was quite intense first two weeks, packed with yoga, surf, and more surf, but in a good sense. I loved that we could see our videos and photos from each day trip and see our progress and receive feedback. I have never had that before in any of my surf trips (even organised ones) and it really makes a huge difference to improve, if you can see yourself and get a feedback on your surfing. Also Olly and Rodger our local surf instructors were very nice and wanted to ensure we had fun and catching waves, even when the swell was small. I can say the same about Fasal from Arugambay, who gave us very useful tips before each session. It was definitely one of my best surf trips, I somehow magically managed to progress to much shorter board, I thought it would take me another two years to ride! It was a great holiday, one of the best.Irena Miroforidu
Sri Lanka, a stunning country to learn to surf in! Perfect for beginners, and intermediates, and made all the more special by a great coaching team of Josh David and Max! Don’t think about it! DO IT!!Lisa
The best way to sum up TTR trips is 'good vibes'. From the surf instructors, yoga, camp staff and the weird and wonderful people you meet on the trip, the good vibes are always flowing. Couldn't recommend a TTR trip more if you want to improve your surf, practice yoga, explore a stunning new country and drink local beers with awesome like-minded people along the way.Ellen
Loved the trip, first surfing experience abroad to remember. Can't speak highly enough of Josh as an instructor and general organiser of daily activities as well as David and the Sion instructors. Will definitely be back to sri lankaElin
Flights need to be booked into Colombo International airport, which is also known as Bandaranaike and Katunayake airport. There are direct flights with Sri Lankan Airlines from London Heathrow to Colombo airport.
No - You simply need to arrive at Colombo airport any time on the first day of your trip and depart Colombo anytime on the final day (if you want the included transfer). We send out more specific trip information and arrival instructions once you have secured your place, but essentially a trip leader will be there to greet you in the Arrivals hall at Colombo airport. Transfers are only available on these days, we can arrange a private transfer (about £70 one-way) or offer public transport advice should you travel on alternative dates.
Everyone traveling to Sri Lanka must have Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) for entering in to Sri Lanka. Visit www.eta.gov.lk for more information.
None! Sri Lanka is a tropical paradise where wetsuits aren't required. We provide rash vests to offer some protection from the sun - just don’t forget your swim wear and plenty of sun cream! You're required to bring your own surfboard for the course. We can help arrange hire if required.
Before you leave for Sri Lanka, please go and see either your local GP or travel surgery and explain where you are going, so that you can be vaccinated accordingly. It is important to do this is good time and we would suggest sorting this 3 or 4 weeks before you leave. For more information, please check out the following websites:
There are no mandatory vaccination requirements for Sri Lanka. However, the following vaccinations are recommended: Typhoid (monovalent), Polio, Tetanus, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Rabies. The health risks in Sri Lanka are different to those encountered in Europe and North America. Watch out for bowel diseases such as diarrhoea and amoebic dysentery, vector borne diseases such as malaria and dengue fever, and a variety of fungal infections. Sri Lanka’s physicians are very experienced in dealing with locally occurring diseases.
For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, check http://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
Your breakfast and 5 dinners per week are included, so you don't have to worry too much about budgeting for your food. A meal in Sri Lanka can range from as little as £1 for a simple rice or curry, while a fresh tuna steak and a large Lion beer will set you back about £5.
In order to jump straight into the Surf Instructor course, you need the essential surf skills and fitness levels to gain the qualification.
Prior to attending a course, participants must have completed a timed swim of 200m completed in less than 5 minutes in a pool no shorter than 25m in order to prove your water fitness is strong enough.
For your surfing, you must be able to paddle out back and duck dive when needed, pop-up consistently on green waves and perform basic maneuvers, turning both left and right.
Your first year's ISA (International Surfing Association) Membership is included in the course fee. You must ensure you pay your membership annually (directly to ISA via their website) in order to hold a valid qualification and membership with ISA. If you miss this deadline, you may be required to take the course again.
After you pass the course, you have the qualification for 2 years. After this time you will need to take a 'refresher' course. This is shorter and cheaper than the full course and is designed to refresh your skills and update you on new methods and techniques. After this, you're required to take a Refresher course every 2-years. Should you miss any of these deadlines then you will be requied to take the full course again.
They are widely recognised and respected, allowing you to work all around the world as long as both your ISA and Lifesaving qualifications are in date.
After your course you are required to gain 20 hours surf coach shadowing experience with a surf school. We can help arrange these hours in Sri Lanka immediately after your course week, or you're welcome to arrange this yourself somewhere else.