Surfability UK is a Community Interest Company dedicated to making Surfing inclusive for people who have additional needs due to disability, illness or learning difficulties. All the money we make is reinvested in making surfing more inclusive for more people. We are pushing the boundaries with who can take part in surfing activities and have developed groundbreaking adapted equipment to make this possible. We really need somewhere to store our equipment and a space where people with severely limiting disabilities can be assisted in changing in to their wetsuits. Another one of our aims for this year is to attend the Adapted Surfing Symposium where Adapted Surfers and Coaches from all ove the world will be meeting to share best practice. We also want to develop and purchase new equipment to extend inclusion to even more people. Current projects include a tandem bodyboard, adapted wetsuits and textured boards for visually impaired people.
Our seated tandem surfboard is the first of its kind in the UK. The board is 12ft long and difficult to transport to and from the beach. Storage at the beach will make it easier to include people who cannott sit up unaided. We also want to develop other seats to suit different body shapes and padding for the seat so that people are more supported.
Imagine trying to put on a wetsuit if you couldn't push your own arms and legs through! A changing and shower table will allow peoples carers to assist them in putting wetsuits on and have a shower to wash the salt off after a surf. We also want to develop a wetsuit that is much easier for people to put on.
Our beach access wheelchair allows wheelchair users to get to the water. It would be great if we could store it at the beach. We now have enough tandem boards and a big enough team to take more than one wheelchair user at a time so another chair would be great.
Adapted surfing takes lots of people power! to use the tandem seated board can take a coach and four helpers! Funding will allow for training helpers in lifguarding, coaching and manual handling skills. We also really want our Head Coach to attend the Adapted Surfing World Championships to attend the symosium which will allow them to learn from Adapted Surfers, Coaches and Organisations from all over the world. This would be a great chance to share experiences, techniques and equipment ideas and bring back lots of inspiration for improving adapted surfing in the UK.