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Typhoon Lagoon's Surf School
Surf Schools are now available at Typhoon Lagoon for guests aged 8 or over. They do stipulate that you must be a strong swimmer and you do have to sign a waiver but don’t let that put you off.
The cost is $135 per person (and this does not include admission to Typhoon Lagoon afterwards) but you will get 2.5 hours of surfing instruction, which will consist of 1/2 hour of land-side instruction and 2 hours of water instruction.
The courses are held every Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 7.30am to 10.00am – so an early start is needed. The class can be up to 13 people and two instructors are present but spectators are welcome to watch. Typhoon Lagoon provides the surf boards. For reservations call 407 WDW PLAY (939-7529) – there is a 24hour cancellation policy so if the weather is very bad, you can get your money back if you call far enough in advance.
You have to arrive at 6am and at about 6.15am a cast member will open the gates and call each participants name – take your credit card to verify payment.
The instructors Craig and Chip are from the Cocoa Beach surfing school. Once deep inside the park you will be given a talk on technique and safety precautions and then you are given time to practice on dry land – things like the basic physical movements required to stand on the board during the wave etc. All the boards are made of hollow fibreglass and they will give you the board that accommodates your height and weight as there are lots of different sizes.
Craig and Chip make it look really easy and go with each student each time - only ever 2 students in the water at any one time so the less in the in class the more chances you get to surf. Once you are in the water you lie flat on the board and then Craig or Chip signal for you to start paddling hard as the wave starts to rise. Once you're lifted from the water by the wave you have to try and jump into position and balance yourself properly – it’s not easy for a beginner. The waves come in 90 second cycles and after each run you need to paddle back to the starting point for a second try with your instructor.
The instructors offer lots of encouragement and helpful advice. I can see why surfers are so well built. It is hard work on your shoulders paddling back on the board each time but it is something different and really enjoyable.
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