As a young girl who is up for adventure and outdoors, my feet was itching for a new adventure when I caught the event posted by Summitmadness team: ‘Let’s learn to surf” (Beginner Surfing destinations in Sri Lanka – Waligama). This post immediately made me so badly to join with them to give a try in riding with the waves. I was so sure that it is going to be so mesmerizing and an adventure that I have never tried before in my life.
I blocked a slot and we were to drive to Weligama the coming weekend. The Weligama beach is the latest addition to a host of sun and surf hot spots on the Sri Lankan coast, including Mirissa, Ahangama and Midigama.
My surfing experience with SummitMadness team is one of the most cherishing experiences which made me a surfing fan and so passionate to become a professional in surfing. Here, I am going to share my story with you.
We left Colombo by 0530 morning took southern highway, and we could reach Weligama by 0800. We had a scrumptious breakfast with freshly baked bread, fish curry and sambol from a small shop along the beach, with a view of blue waters of Indian Ocean.
We changed our clothes to surfing suits of which we were instructed to bring tight enough, water proof clothing.
We were introduced to our surfing instructor who was so friendly, a welcoming character. He started the session with all positive remarks giving us motivation and a bag full of hopes.”Weligama is ideal for beginner surfers because of its gentle swell, soft break and also there is no strong current.”He started.
The program has been designed to give all the beginners to gain the total experience of learning how to surf until they are comfortable with the mighty waves. The programme was scheduled in 02 main sessions. The dry session was for training in safety, early balancing and paddling techniques. The wet session utilizes the skills learnt during the dry session and works to perfect them.
There are three levels of surfing to be reached as a long term training goal. The Beginner, Intermediate and advanced level. Starting with basics, we will learn the wave theory and the rise and fall of it and go into a lot more techniques. I heard that advanced surfers have to master minimum three years of training experiences which is my ultimate goal as a passionate surfer.
While listening to the basic techniques of surfing & watching all the demonstrations as how to read the waves and move from lying on the surfboard to standing in one dynamic move during dry session, It had seemed so much easier back on the sand.
After enough instructions, finally we were going to the sea with our surfing board .The board was heavier than I guessed and taking the board properly was itself a technique to be mastered.
We all were in happy faces and then ready to surf the waves. The start of a dream coming true!
Yeah I am surfing!
But ALAS! :-O
All the instructions just washed away with the cresting wave that propels the surfboard forward as I tumble sideways into a bubbling froth of water.
Surfing instructors were watching us and helping us to get into to the board and catch the waves. Failing repeatedly to go with the waves, I was bit disheartened and face was pale when the chief instructor came to me and explained why I could not get the wave and why I fell into water in a second.
With his kind words and expertise knowledge, he was telling me
“Surfing is not a miracle or magic, but it is a long process that requires patience and practice. Do not give up if you can’t stand on the board and ride waves from the first day! I know can you will eventually get on that board after a lesson or two and you’ll never ever forget the feeling of victory and the happiness.”
I got hammered by the water and tip over the side repeatedly before I get it right once, and then I fall in again. But I could not stop until I success.
Yes, he was correct .Once I learned the art of surfing with correct technique, I could stand on the board and manages to surf for few minutes making me the happiest girl on the planet right then.
We got a break and we refreshed and our instructor was then giving some hints of surfing and safety.
“You should be well alert and well aware of safety tips. Being able to swim is not a must, but it will boost up the morale and safety. The surfboard is always securely attached to your body, keeping you safe even in deep waters, but in rare cases the cord actually breaks; you can manage if you can swim and float.”
Our instructor was further educating us on surfing.
“The south coast surf season is from November to April with super consistent condition and possibilities to surf every day.
“The best time to surf is early morning before 11 am .The wind then picks up. In the afternoon the wind dies down so we can go for our second or even third Suring round until sunset little after 6 pm.”
Experienced surfers can cross, go up, down and run circles around these waves. I of course could not do any of the sort no such thing, but two hours after I start, I realized that I picked up the basics.
Further, I learned that surfing is so deeply rooted in the culture of the Southern locals that it automatically bonded us stronger to them and to their culture which was so inviting to come to the beaches again and again.
Weligama is absolutely the ideal location for beginners like me looking for small waves and the best conditions for surf learning and training. With waves of never too high and sandy beaches, coconut trees, and friendly faces everywhere; Weligama and southern beaches are where I want to spend my next sunny escape.
Surfing always epitomizes freedom to me and especially with a rapturous promise of the power to ride the ocean to which I am looking forward in the next vacation or sooner.