Surfer wave illustration
Adaptive surfer wave illustration
St Ouen Sunset Graphics
Cloud moving left
Cloud graphic
Cloud graphic
graphic of flying birds
Sun graphic

From April 2024 - September 2024

ADAPTIVE Surfing & Paddle Boarding

Healing Waves supports individuals of all abilities. The charity secured both the first and second adaptive surf/paddle boards within the Channel Islands. These boards enable any individual with physical needs, eg wheelchair users, to access the ocean and participate in surf and paddle activities.

Adaptive board sessions usually run separately from groups and last 1 hour in total. Adaptive sessions are supported on a 4:1 ratio, with a minimum of three Volunteers assigned to the role of wipe out assistant per Athlete. They are required to drop back and form a ‘runway’ for the board to ride through and to be readily on hand in the event of a wipe out. The fourth Volunteer oversees the team and controls the board whilst riding with the Athlete.

All Adaptive Athletes are required to wear a helmet and a life vest and, for those who struggle to regulate their own body temperature, a heated rash vest will be provided. Please ensure you let us know your requirements in advance. Transfer slings are used (when required) to safely transfer Athletes from their own chair into our floating beach chair on dry land.

For Adaptive Paddle sessions we have a designated safety person who typically accompanies the rider and Athlete in a sea kayak. A safety bag containing rescue me locators, a mobile phone, flares, first aid kits, water, snacks and other useful tools for emergency situations is also brought along for the duration of the paddle.

Our adaptive Surf and Paddle sessions run from both Le Braye and St Brelade’s depending on weather and surf conditions. Both locations have changing facilities for all needs.

We also have adaptive prone boards for those with upper body strength and leg movement. These sessions can be supported both on a 1:1 and 2:1 ratio depending on the Athlete’s level of need. These boards are great for allowing individuals to experience riding waves prone.

Please note that we do not transport Athletes to and from sessions. If you have not fully completed and submitted your client information and waiver forms prior to your session you will not be allowed to participate in the session.

Signing In and Out
Athletes under the age of 18 will need a Parent/Guardian to sign them in and out of their session. Anyone over 18 who is accessing our service independently can sign themselves in and out. We kindly ask that Parents/Guardians stay in the area, but if they do have to leave to please be back before the end of the session to sign their child out.

Changes in Weather or Swell Conditions
Unfortunately we cannot predict changes in the weather or swell conditions and if the weather and/or sea becomes unfit to surf in, we may need to end water-based sessions immediately. If we are not at the Surf Therapy Centre, we may ask that you stay within the area.

Getting Ready at Home
If you are using your own wetsuit, you might like to put it on at home to save some time. We suggest that all Athletes apply suncream before arriving at the beach and getting in the water, as the sun’s rays can still be harmful even when it is cloudy. Having a light snack an hour before your session will also keep those energy levels up!

The safety and wellbeing of our Athletes and team is of paramount importance. All service users are paired on at least a 1:1 ratio with a HW team member. In the summer months we typically run sessions on lifeguarded beaches or have beach lifeguard-trained team members with us. All Athletes are required to wear life vests for surfing sessions.

We ask that all Athletes listen to the advice and instructions given to them by the HW team and conduct themselves in a safe manner at all times. Unfortunately, any Athlete deemed to be putting themselves, our team or other Athletes in danger will be asked to exit the water and return to the beach immediately until it is time to sign out (our team will remain with the Athlete should this be necessary).

Register for an ocean therapy adaptive session with Healing Waves