Thursday, October 25, 2007


To represent the needs of thousands of surfers who are shocked by the new British Airways (BA) ban on the carriage of surfboards (effective from 6th November), the British Surfing Association (BSA) has set up a petition to lobby the airline to reverse their decision.

The organisation is also urging all surfers to utilise a new members group on the social networking site Facebook, complain directly to BA and spread the word amongst other surfers.

Karen Walton, National Director, BSA, says, “If everyone who surfs could take five minutes to go online and follow our recommended action steps then we will have a real representation of the swell of support for the reversal of this absurd decision. The Facebook site already has in excess of 1,000 members and lots of our members have been making complaints to BA. Our new online petition means that people all over the world can add their support to our campaign and can add their personal comments about the issue. We will then be personally delivering the petition to the management at BA in the near future.”

Surfers are urged to take the following steps to help us lobby British Airways to reverse their decision:

1) Go onto and click the ‘SIGN ONLINE PETITION OF PROTEST IN THE NEWS SECTION ON THE HOME PAGE’. Follow the easy steps to sign this online petition and add any comments.
2) If you have a Facebook account, join the Facebook ‘British Airways Surfboard Ban’ group
3) Click this link and register a complaint with BA directly
4) Encourage all other surfers to follow these steps

Bumper season in prospect?

With last season being one of the worst in recent memory for snowfall, its easy to get caught up in the doom-and-gloom of global warming and the implications that weather boffins claim it has for the sport we all love. However, one look at these awesome shots from Mt Bachelor in the U.S., taken on October 20th, suggest that this season may be an altogether different story, with foot-upon-foot of fresh powder already! With European glacial resorts enjoying decent conditions too, it's surely promising to be a far better season this year!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Sweetspots arrives

After perusing the KAOS blog get yourself over to to see Nike ACG's latest offering: Sweetspots. They've served up 8 films (so far) featuring their top riders who have each hooked up with some of the finest film production companies to document their own Sweetspot.

photo: Brian Becker

Each Sweetspot is a 3-4 minute short film, documenting something or somewhere of personal significance to the riders. They were given the chance to document a trip, session or trick that they'd felt passionately about and the result is a collection of films that each have their own flavour. From Andreas Hatveit defying gravity and sense in taking on the craziest box setup in Sandpoint (above) to Henning Marthinsen holding out for white gold in Revelstoke, the guys came back with something achieved and a story to tell.

More Sweetspots will be added over the course of the season and come spring the site will also take on kayaking and basejumping films. If you're up for submitting your own Sweetspot, or even joining an crack team to shoot their own film with Nike- keep your eyes out for the 'join the crew' feature on the site


IOC Announces Youth Olympics

Last Thursday saw the IOC make a landmark decision: they announced that the first ever Youth Olympics would be taking place in August 2010. This will be the first time that young athletes will get the chance to compete for Olympic gold, and they will be held over 12 days with an expected 3200 kids aged between 14 and 18 competing. The Winter Games will be held in 2012 and are expected to attract 1000 athletes.

IOC Supremo Jacques Rogge admitted that the scheme was not just an initiative to tackle child obesity but also a result of today’s youth losing interest in the traditional events involved the Summer Games. Indeed he acknowledged that the youth of today are more interested in competitions like the X Games, which feature BMX Freestyle, Skateboarding, Surfing and FMX.

The IOC has already added skateboarding to the London Olympics in 2012, and so the Youth Olympics is yet another attempt by the IOC to strengthen its reputation amongst teens, with many of these action sports touted to be amongst the events at the youth Olympics.
Mr Rogge stated:
“Just as the IOC has known, over our 100-plus years of existence, how to move with the times - so we must now adapt to meet the taste of today’s young generation.”

It is not yet known where the first Youth Olympics will be held, but 6 cities have already applied, and in line with tradition, they will be held every 4 years.

Monday, October 01, 2007

New Wave of hope for British Surfing

Sport England, in conjunction with the British Surfing Association (BSA), has announced that a £94,000 boost will see the funding of a new Regional Surf Development Coach within the South West. The position and the funding has been created to strengthen the quality of surf coaching that is available across the area and to build the crucial surf club structure which is integral to the growth of surfing as a regular sporting activity amongst people of all ages.

It is estimated that there are 500,000 surfers in the UK and over 52% of this number reside in the South West. Surfing forms a crucial part of the economy for the South West and at least 95% of Britain’s top surfers either come from the South West or have chosen to reside there.

Whilst there are a number of successful, strong surf clubs currently in existence, in recent years this important part of the UK sporting structure has eroded and the new three year position will see a person who is dedicated to the redevelopment of this area and a continual building of the style and quality of surf coaching that is available for people of all ages throughout the region.

The South West Regional Sports Board is supporting the BSA with a Regional Development Coach, as it has also done for women’s rugby, netball and swimming, via Community Investment Funding. The aim is to support these sports by identifying coaching gaps within their player pathways and to help plug these gaps through investment into coaching at the appropriate level.

The new position will be based in the BSA’s headquarters at Fistral Beach, Newquay, however the Regional Surf Development Coach will travel the length and breadth of the South West to examine the current structure and build a strong, new system.

The post will see the successful applicant working in consultation with the BSA National Director, to write and deliver an agreed strategic development programme to create and maintain an active surf club culture and network in the South West and to subsequently increase grass roots participation numbers in surfing.

Karen Walton, National Director of the BSA says, “The news that we had been given this invaluable grant is a major boost for the organisation and for British surfing. It has been over ten years since the BSA received any significant form of government backing so this new funding is a great opportunity for us to begin to build and strengthen the current structure and take the standards of surf coaching to a new level.

The new Regional Surf Development Coach will form a key part of our team in the South West and will bring new value and opportunities to current and potential surfers across the region. We’re looking forward to receiving applications and seeing the post become a reality.”

Jim Clarke, Sport England Regional Director says, "We are delighted to be supporting the BSA with this exciting new position which will help to support the development of surf coaches and coaching across the SW region. Sport England exists to sustain and increase participation in community sport, and we hope that this project will help to achieve both of these aims."

Above: Karen Walton, Barry Hall, Sam Limeroy, Tony Good Photo: Ralph Rutter/Event Media