Windsurfing on the Gold Coast

Take up the challenge of a windsurfing lesson or two, and participate in this magical and satisfying sport that combines surfing and sailing, lots of speed and movement... and hours of entertainment.

Experienced windsurfers make it look effortless and graceful, gliding smoothly across the water as they do...

But it's not as easy as it looks and if you're a beginner, you shouldn't expect to get it right first go.

Be prepared to spend a number of days in trial-and-error if you teach yourself.

Or, for a quicker, less-frustrating way to learn windsurfing on the Gold Coast, book yourself in for a lesson or two with a professional instructor: most learners will have grasped the basics after 4-5 hours.

Another good reason to hire an instructor is that he'll supply all the equipment required! Some tour operators may also hire out equipment to experienced users, or those who wish to do-it-yourself. Man Windsurfing

So what's involved in learning to windsurf?

Well, although you don't have to be the world's greatest swimmer, you should feel reasonably comfortable in the water, and be able to swim at least 50 metres by yourself.

Similar to a surfing lesson, you'll practice some basic manoeuvres on the sand first - correct stance, pulling up the rig, connecting your harness and turning around.

Then it's into the water where you'll put all that theory into practice - it's also where you'll most appreciate having an instructor!

Right from the outset, you'll need good balance to stand on the board and pull the rig from the water.

However, everything will seem a little easier once you have the all-important rig to hold on to - so long as there's a breeze for it to pull against!

You'll find today's windsurfers have several features to make learning the sport a whole lot easier.

You'll wear a chest harness that's connected to the boom - so you don't have to rely on physical strength to control the rig. This means you won't tire as quickly... so there's more time to enjoy being on the water!

Also, a series of footstraps on the board will prevent you from slipping.

You'll find windsurfing the Gold Coast waterways to be great exercise, good entertainment and extremely enjoyable. You don't have to be a master of the sport to have fun... so come on, have a go!

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Safety Hints for Windsurfers and Kitesurfers

  • Stay in easy distance of the shore, especially if you are a beginner.
  • Always wear a Personal Flotation Device (PFD).
  • Stay at least 30m from other surfers, and 50m from swimmers and boats.
  • Give way to all other water users.
  • Don't overestimate your abilities - if in doubt about the conditions, don't go out.
  • Make sure you know basic self-rescue procedures.
  • Avoid strong offshore winds unless you're experienced enough to return comfortably to shore.
  • When kitesurfing, always use a safety leash. Ensure kites on the beach are weighted with sand, to prevent premature launching.

Prices for individual one-on-one lessons are as follows:
~$120 pp for 1 hr
~$160 pp for 2 hrs
~$240 pp for 3 hrs
* Equipment included in cost.

Prices may be reduced by 35-50% for small groups of 2-3 people. Eg. the cost per person for 3 people for 3 hours is ~$120 per person (instead of $240). Full details available from tour operator.
Public toilet facilities are generally located at a nearby Surf Club or park, so take a rest-stop before the lesson starts. There are usually beach cafes / kiosks nearby, for refreshments.
Wet Weather
Suitable in light rain.
Operating Hours
Lessons are available all year round, although depends on availability of instructors from week to week.
It's best to spend a couple of hours at a time, learning and practicing, as it’s not a new skill that will be mastered immediately.
Handy Hints
- Refer to safety hints at end of article.
- Take hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, and drinking water.
- Rubber-soled surf booties may help beginners get a better grip on the board.
- Instructors can only coach small groups at any one time, so advance bookings required.
How To Get There
Location may vary according to weather conditions, so contact tour operator for details.
Further Info
Surf Connect provides windsurfing lessons in Brisbane, the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast. They engage local instructors, so no travelling costs are applicable.
Contact details are Tel 07-3216 5666 or 0411 789 888.

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