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ISA Surf & SUP Instructor Courses

ISA Surf & SUP Instructor Courses


For the beach bums at heart with a thrill-seeking love of the surf, nothing beats turning your favourite pastime into a full-blown career. They always say, find something you love, and then start doing it for a living. And nothing could be truer.

For the ultimate adventure, the ISA (International Surf Association) surf instructor and SUP instructor training courses are the most widely recognised and internationally approved courses, meaning you can teach at surf schools both here in the UK and abroad too.

Here at Era Adventures, you can be assured of an entirely comprehensive, successful and safe surf course, allowing you to either add to your existing qualifications or kick-start a new career - We love to have fun and enjoy the surf but take our training seriously at the same time.

On either course, you won’t just improve on your technical skills and ability to show others the ropes but will acquire a great variety of soft skills too essential for effectively and safely leading, engaging and supporting a group of budding surfers.

ISA Level 1 Surf Coach Course

2 days£350 per person

This level 1 course is the minimum requirement to become a surf instructor for an Surfing England/ISA approved surf school. The course is open at anyone over the age of 16 with a couple of years’ experience surfing and a genuine desire to teach others.

The course content covers a wide range of surf education including remaining safe whilst surfing, specific surfing techniques as well as a range of group management and essential coaching techniques for you to use within your new career.

Throughout this course you will be assessed, in both classroom based and practical sessions, on a variety of criteria including surf venue analysis, group assessment and lesson planning, lesson delivery, practical surfing skills and your own self-assessment.

By the end of the course, you will be expected to demonstrate that your personal surfing prowess is of an acceptable standard along with an assessment of your soft skills in terms of delivering lessons to your peers within the course. You’ll also be expected to show your competency in coaching novice to intermediate level surfers by logging 20 hours of practical tuition with a recognised ISA and Surfing England surf school such as ourselves. As part of this course, you will also be given your Surfing England membership, which is a formal requirement needed to work in surf schools here in the UK.

ISA Level 2 Surf Coach Course

3 days£450 per person

The Level 2 Surf Instructor Course is aimed at individuals over the age of 18, who have already completed and held for at least two years, their Surfing England/ISA Level 1 Surf Coach Award.

The award is aimed at ISA Level 1 coaches who are currently working with novice to intermediate surfers who wish to develop their skills in order to coach more advanced classes. It’s widely recognised as the most desirable qualification by Surfing England and ISA regulated surf schools, Camps and Retreats in the UK & Worldwide for appointing head coaches. You’ll be able to work with junior squads, advanced and competitive surfers as well as being the minimum award required if you wish to start your own surf school in the UK. Although the exact schedule of this award may vary, the primary course content includes:

  • Performance analysis through video
  • Surf Simulation Drills
  • Learning the benefits and execution of performance analysis
  • Principles of fitness, diet and nutrition
  • Skill drills for surfers
  • Group workshops
  • Surf programme planning
  • Practical coaching sessions
  • Fault recognition and correction
  • Practical surf sessions and evaluations
  • Healthy, Safety and the law
  • Method and risk assessments
  • Safe and effective coaching
  • Presentations

On completing this qualification, your award will be valid for a year from your award date from the ISA , at which point you’ll have to start paying your annual registration fee to the International Surf Association and also keep  the relevant lifesaving qualification valid.

ISA Flat Water SUP (Stand-Up Paddleboard) Instructor Course

2 days£350 per person

This course is aimed at people wishing to get qualified in instructing stand up paddle boarding (SUP) on flat water. You may be an already existing surf instructor wishing to broaden your horizons or an SUP enthusiast with a passion to pass on the skills required to start others on the SUP journey. 

Candidates will have some SUP experience able to use the boards in flat water scenarios and possess relevant water safety certification in order to conduct safe lessons and provide lifesaving support.

Candidates will be required to attend the 2 day course and put through a professional course aimed at teaching instructors to deliver safety, technique, risk assessments, venue safety, equipment checks and fun well structured lessons leading to strong customer service and positive customer experiences.

After completing the 2 day course you will be required to complete 20 volunteer teaching hours to gain experience with qualified coaches before conducting a final lesson by yourself to be assessed by a senior coach. Upon completion of your final assessment you will be put into the ISA database and awarded you internationally recognised ISA certification and be ready to begin a new chapter as a qualified SUP instructor.

Your award will be valid for 1 year from completion of the course with ERA after which you will need to pay your annual registration to the ISA to keep your award valid and up to date. 

ILS Aquatic Rescue & Water Safety

2 days£250 per person

Location: Worldwide (Including Portugal, Norway, Nicaragua, Maldives, Philippines & Morocco)

The ISA requires that all certified Surf & SUP instructors hold a valid, recognized water safety certification. This is to ensure that an instructor has the skills and knowledge necessary to provide emergency care and ensure water safety during a lesson. The ISA Water Safety Course is specific to Surf and SUP Instructors and its contents are outlined below.

The ISA Water Safety Course is specific to Surf and SUP Instructors and its contents are outlined below:

Course Components

The ISA Surf and SUP Instructor Aquatic Rescue and Safety Course includes both theory and practical components as well as group discussions and group activities.

  • The theory components include a PowerPoint Presentation and Participant Workbook.
  • The practical components include basic water/surf skills, completing patient rescues using a board, performing basic first aid, performing basic CPR and emergency care techniques and successfully completing a basic fitness test.

The Basic Surf Fitness Test will be as a minimum the following:

  • 100m run
  • Negotiation of the inner surf zone with a swim of at least 100m through the surf and impact zone
  • 100m run

This is to be done showing surf skill competency and within a 5 minute time frame. It is based on small to moderate surf conditions. A Course Presenter may extend the course of the Basic Fitness Test, in which case, the time frame might also be adjusted, depending on conditions.

Course Practical Assessments

The ISA Surf and SUP Instructor Aquatic Rescue and Safety Course Assessment is a competency based assessment. Participants have to show competency in the following Practical Skills.

  • Conscious & unconscious Board Rescue
  • Basic First Aid techniques in numerous scenarios
  • Provision of Basic Emergency Care including CPR

Successful Course Completion

To successfully complete the ISA Surf and SUP Instructor Aquatic Rescue and Safety Course, all participants must:

  • Satisfy the Course Pre-Requisites
  • Attend and be present for the full Course Training and Assessment sessions as determined prior to the start of a course
  • Show competency in all theory components including successful completion of the Participant Workbook
  • Show competency in all practical components of the Course including Board Rescue techniques, basic first aid techniques and satisfy the basic fitness components.

RLSS Beach Lifeguard & ISA Surf Coach Level 1

7 days£650 per person

Perfect for those who have yet to undertake the prerequisite of their beach lifeguard award from the Royal Life Savers Society, this combined package allows you to undertake both qualifications so as you can get your career. You can find out more in detail about the RLSS Award on our qualifications page, and about the surf courses above.

ILS/ISA Aquatic Rescue Water Safety & ISA Surf Coach Level 1

Not Available in UK£550 per person

This a great combo option for candidates wishing to gain their ISA Surf Coach Award and start work in a surf school or surf camp! There is a basic fitness test but no timed swim in a pool and is the perfect option for a majority of prospective Surf Coaches not wanting or needing the full Beach Lifeguard Award!

RLSS Beach Lifeguard Renewal & ISA Surf Coach Level 2

6 days£650 per person

Perfect for those who have already been coaching for at least a couple of years. You may need to refresh your beach lifeguard qualification and can take the opportunity to enhance your surf coaching skills to the next level. You will want to be coaching more advanced level of surf lessons and aspiring to be a senior or head coach or surf school manager. It is easy to just think about refreshing your beach lifeguard qualification but this could be the ideal time and opportunity to progress your qualifications to the next level and stepping further along in your surf coaching and activities career. 


ISA Surf Instructor & SUP Instructor Courses that we offer

You can undertake either your ISA level 1 or level 2 surf instructor course or Flatwater SUP instructor courses from our awesome beachside dedicated training room at the prestigious Fistral Beach, Newquay, Cornwall. Set on a stunning stretch of coastline, there’s probably no better spot to undertake your training and take the first steps towards becoming a qualified surf instructor.


There are a couple of key prerequisites to you signing up for either of the ISA surf courses on offer - clearly, you’ll need to be able to surf! - you’ll need:

  • A current Beach Life Saving Qualification acceptable to both the ISA and Surf Great Britain (SGB)
  • At least two years of real and personal surfing experience.

Surf Coach Qualification Prices

  • ISA Level 1 (2 Day) - £350 per person
  • ISA Level 2 Surf Coach Award (3 Day) - £450 per person
  • ISA flat water SUP coach award (2 Day) - £350 per person
  • ISA Water Safety & Rescue (2 Day) - £250

Combo Course Packages Prices

  • RLSS Beach Lifeguard & ISA Surf Coach Level 1 (7 Day) - £650 per person (Combined course package)
  • RLSS (Renewal) Beach Lifeguard & ISA Level 2 Surf Coach  (6 Day) - £650 per person (Combined course package)
  • SLSGB Surf Coach Safety Rescue & ISA Level 1 (6 Day) - £600
  • ILS Aquatic Rescue Water Safety & ISA Level 1 (4 Day) - £550

Student Discounts are available call 01208 862 963 for details.

Book Now

If you have any further queries, or want to book yourself onto our next available course, just drop us a line or send an enquiry through our booking form and we’ll be back in touch as soon as we can! Student Discounts available.

Call 01208 862 963