There are many perks to living in South Florida. One in particular is the water, and kids as young as six are learning to do what Paul Vargas of Aloha Surfing School knows best.
Paul Vargas "What we have here is a summer camp program here at Jupiter Beach. If you look out here at the surf, you'll see the kids learning how to surf, but they're also learning ocean safety."
But before the kids hit the ocean, there's a few things they have to learn. "We start them out on the sand. So they start out learning all the basics on the sand - popping up, learning how to paddle, how to stand up, which foot goes forward - which builds their confidence because the sands not moving."
First, Paul showed me how to pop up on the board. After practicing a few times, I was ready to meet up with kids and try it for myself.
Getting up on the board was easy; however, staying up was another story!
There were about 35 kids out in the water with me. Many who are new to the sport, too.
Eight-year-old Everett from Jupiter just learned how to surf three weeks ago. He told me he got up the first time!
Nine-year-old Trevor from Jupiter told me about a time he had a complete wipe out. "All these waves started coming in, and the board just came up and nailed me in the head."
But that didn't stop him from getting right back on his board and trying again.
And when it's all said and done, Paul think his job is pretty rewarding. "It's one of the best feelings. The teachers/student relationship, when you actually accomplish your goal at hand and see them enjoying - not just enjoying but loving it - it kind of just connects you to them because you both have the same passion for surfing."
So now that I know how to surf, if I'm not at my desk, it's because I'm out catching some waves!
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