Second session and we are finding our groove. A hassle-free check-in and off down the beach in good time for an hour-long surf. It’s pretty much low tide, gusty wind and showers, and some meaty waves punching through. The Nemos and Dorys were finding lots of white water rides on the inside while the Tuna and Swordfish were battling in chest-deep waves to hold position for the best offering. Out back the Dolphins were dealing with overhead and occasionally steep waves, testing the mettle. The banner picture contrasts a novice surfer making those early steps in the club with Teddy out back, now developing into an accomplished performer.
That’s All Folks … was the farewell line as the cartoons finished on TV back in the day, and today’s blog signals the end of the Saturday Kids Club for another season. We left it in style with the largest attendance of the summer. While the younger groups worked with their coaches in polishing their techniques, the more advanced surfers had a chance to compete in a knockout under the professional judging rules and taste the experience of putting on the coloured rash vests and going head-to-head with their peers. Our first few pictures show some of those juniors working on their stances.
At the same time competition got underway for the seniors with the clubhouse balcony offering a fine view for our judges to score the waves in each heat.
Competition was fierce as the rounds progressed, and both the boys final and the girls required a close checking of the scores of our judges before the winners could be ascertained. In each case there were three surfers within a point of winning at the end of the contest.
Kaitlyn took the honours in the girls event, securing her first title after making the final on several occasions in the past. Our banner picture shows our newly-crowned champion receiving her trophy from the chairman. Teddy, likewise, took home the boys trophy, a well-earned result after some near-misses in the past.
We then repaired to the clubhouse to make the presentations and to celebrate the achievements of our youngsters this season. Each group awards accolades in three categories; Surfer of the Summer, Most Improved Surfer and Most Dedicated Surfer. There were more than a few damp eyes among coaches and parents as some of these presentations were made, and a real delight in everyone in the room to share in the joy of our young recipients.
The last picture shows Teddy receiving his trophy from our chairman to the general acclaim of the room.
In closing, I must offer the heartfelt thanks of Saints Boardriders to St. Ives Surf School for hosting those Saturday sessions, coaching our youngsters and for organising a splendid end-of-season competition yet again. Thanks also to our judges and to the morning admin desk and photographer for keeping the day in focus. Wood Paper Scissors made the wonderful medals which our participants were awarded on the day, and these greatly enriched the experience of our young chargers and help us celebrate our membership of the club. Porthmeor Beach have fed us and welcomed us warmly this year and many previous years, our gratitude to them is deep. The contribution of the parents is also a factor in building the spirit of the club and we are blessed with some great support in that department.
We look forward to re-convening around the beginning of June 2022 to welcome everyone back for another season of Kids Club and another summer of Saturday surfing!
As we reached the penultimate session for the season, it was felt that we should get a team photo as we were ready early for the surf. Of course, there are quite a few members missing, as any Saturday in the holiday season presents; but our banner picture has a fair few of the class of 2021.
The surfing itself was very good on the day – sweet little waves that allowed most kids to stroke themselves in with time to get up on the board. Our Sharks may have felt deprived of the bigger stuff that they prefer, but i did see some of them practicing cross-stepping and tandem riding and generally enjoying a longboard kind of vibe, so I’d say that all tastes were catered for on the morning.
Some pics of the proceedings below:
School holidays have arrived and we are forging ahead with our Kids Club season. Conditions for our seventh session were friendly and there was a large turnout of young surfers, all keen to show their chops. Just like learning to ride a bike, repetition and practise is beginning to pay off as our young chargers are developing confident pop-ups and more assured balance on the board. Hopefully the holidays will offer plenty of beach days and waves to develop those burgeoning skills over the next few weeks!
Our sequence of favourable Saturday morning sea conditions continues as we enjoyed pretty perfect surfing conditions for the sixth Kids Club of the season. A gently dropping tide on a warm day brought out our largest attendance so far and our young rippers were keen to take advantage of nature’s bounty. The camera captured some of the fun …
The fifth week of Kids Club met with waves sized ‘nothing to not very much’. Disappointing for the Sharks, Dolphins and our hardboard riders but a chance to shine for the tiny tots and the younger groups who can fashion a ride from the gentlest push. Well, they gave us a show with some delightful rides, and there was even time for a little rafting fun mid-session! Here are some of the scenes we witnessed as the Nemos and Dorys found their feet. And a dolphin headstand demonstrates that the right board can deliver a ride in the smallest of waves. Cheers!
Arriving for our fourth session of the season we were confronted with a tricky challenge. The water was barely back off the high tide bank after a spring tide and there was the remnant of a Northerly swell pushing some lumpy waves into the beach. It promised a difficult paddle to get out back for our more accomplished surfers and some battles on the inside with breaking waves for our younger participants and their helpers. To everyone’s great credit these challenges were met head on, resulting in some fine surfing and with a growing confidence in all groups that we can be comfortable and find suitable waves even in a moody Porthmeor swell. We had a full gamut from the chest-to-head-high waves that the Sharks tackled to the running ankle-slappers on the inside that the Dory and Nemo groups shared. Some of the action is shown below:
The third session of the season saw the largest turnout to date and enjoyed pretty perfect Kids Club conditions at Porthmeor. The waves were friendly enough for the Nemos and Dorys, yet also offered some peaks and faces for the Sharks to lay down some turns and polish their small wave skills. Our newer instructors are beginning to appreciate the talents of their young charges and are helping them push their techniques to higher levels. All in all, a perfect morning’s surfing for Saints Boardriders! The party wave in the banner picture sums up the relaxed vibe of the day.
Week two and we are blessed with fine surfing conditions again. Attendance was a little down due to a couple of Covid related scares in some school classes plus the once-in-a-lifetime hazard of road closures and diversions due to the world’s leaders meeting for a G7 summit in Carbis Bay! However, those who were able to get to Porthmeor had a fine old time as witnessed by some of our pictures below. I was particularly impressed by the Sharks group this morning. They were hitting the lip hard and seemed to be competing to see who could pull off the most outrageous layback. Here’s a flavour of the scene, with a random waterborne message concerning the protection of the ocean which passed across the beach during the session.
Twenty months or so after our last Saturday morning gathering we were finally able to get together, reconnect with our junior surfers and get Kids Club 2021 on the road. It was a chilly, misty morning, which may have been a disincentive to some, but those who got to the beach for the session had some peachy low-tide waves to work with and an enthusiastic bunch of coaches and parents to cheer them on. It was great to welcome back some familiar faces and equally to greet some new members and introduce them to the delights of surfing. The pictures below have a flavour of what went down on the morning.