What equipment is provided?
We provide: surfboards and 5mm wetsuits. For winter months (or if you’re the chilly type!) we also provide neoprene booties, hoods and gloves. Tofino Surf School uses 9' surfboards that are soft on the top and bottom. The surfboards have flexible, soft fins on the bottom.
Am I going to be cold?
After the lesson, people are always surprised how warm they were! Tofino Surf School wetsuits provide great temperature comfort, winter or summer.
I'm not a strong swimmer (or I don't know how to swim)…?
Beginners learn to surf in waist high to chest deep water. Wetsuits are very buoyant. When surfing you wear a "leash" that attaches to the surfboard which means you are attached to a flotation device at all times. Our instructors have their Bronze Cross and Bronze Medallions through the LifeSaving Society of Canada*, which encompasses first aid training. Tofino Surf School prides itself on our small group sizes, which means increased safety on every lesson.
* We make sure that any instructors not from Canada have an equivalent level of First Aid training.
Students should wear a swimsuit (underneath their clothes when they arrive at the office) to be worn underneath their wetsuit. Tofino Surf School has one washroom and if each student needs to change it can run the lesson late.
Males will need to wear a Speedo type swimsuit or brief style underwear or cycling shorts. Boxers/ swim trunks can be too baggy to be worn underneath the wetsuit.
Students should also bring a towel.
A water bottle and small snack (apple, granola bar, etc.) is a good idea.
Where do I leave my belongings during the lesson?
Valuables should be left in a safe place such as your accommodation—Tofino Surf School is not responsible for any client valuables.
Students can ask to stow their car keys, phones or other valuables in our instructor's knapsack—putting the items in a waterproof ziplock first is good in case a knapsack gets wet—but Tofino Surf School is not responsible for any of these valuables either.
Can I bring a camera?
A waterproof camera is an okay idea. Students should make sure they have some type of flotation device attached to the camera. Students will have their hands full (surf, surfboard) in the water, but during breaks on the beach is a good time to take photos. Our instructors would be happy to take some photos of the students using the student's camera.
Also see 'Where do I leave my belongings during the lesson?' above.
I'm a minor. Who can sign my waiver form?
Surf students less than 18 years old need an adult to sign the waiver. Or we will e-mail a waiver for minors to print out at home and bring to the office. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you need a waiver in advance.
It's raining, can I still go surfing?
Yes you can, we run our lessons, rain or shine.
Do you ever cancel lessons for rain etc?
For just rain, no, we don't cancel lessons. In fact, surfing conditions are great when it rains, and there’s nothing better to do on a rainy day because you’re gonna get wet anyhow :)
We only cancel a lesson in the event of high winds, high surf, or lightning.
Our 'About lessons' page
Check out our About lessons page for a couple more Q&As, plus lots of other useful info'.