14 charging amigas + 1 super cool amigo joined us at the Northern Nicaragua retreat location for a week-long shred fest! We had a record breaking week with the most tubes ever ridden, the gnarliest waves ever taken, and the best turns ever completed. This inspiring group of surfers spent the week pushing their limits and supporting each other along the way. We can’t wait to do a retreat like this again!
Enjoy this recap of the Advanced Retreat shred-fest in Nicaragua!
Most of our retreat locations are open to surfers of ALL levels and have plenty of shortboard-able waves close by. If you’re a fellow shortboarder and feel inspired to join a retreat and level up your technique, contact us here to see which retreat might be the best fit for you!
What’s the key to keeping our lineups safe and fun?
Knowing and practicing surf etiquette! Familiarizing yourself with these unwritten rules of surfing will empower you to catch more waves, surf safely, and feel confident with other surfers in the lineup. Here are 3 easy-to-remember surf etiquette tips that every surfer should know.
Tip #1: Get to know your surf level
Whether you’re brand new to surfing, or already have some experience, it’s essential to find a surf spot that suits your skill level. Surfing at a break that’s right for you is the best way to avoid unwanted surf incidents- whether that means avoiding crowded lineups, difficult waves, sharp reef, etc.
It’s certainly courageous (and can be exhilarating) to push outside of your comfort zone and surf difficult waves! However, you should only really try to push these limits once you’re completely confident that you can control your surfboard and maneuver around other surfers or obstacles in the lineup.
So what’s the best way to find a surf break that’s right for your level?
One recommendation is to talk with experienced surfers in your area. If you’re at your local beach and wondering if the break or conditions are appropriate for your level, scope out an experienced surfer who’s close by and just start chatting! Chances are, they’ll be willing to point you in the right direction. If you’re at the water’s edge trying to decide if you’ve chosen the right spot, check out the other surfers in the water. Do you see anyone riding a similar surfboard? Do you see anyone at a similar level?
They’re the SWA power duo! Surf With Amigas Co-Owners, Jackie George and Holly Beck, have been running ladies surf & yoga retreats together for almost 10 years. Both ladies typically split their time between Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and California- running retreats, surfing, and living the sweet & simple life.
We think you’ll love this Q&A with them. First up is Jackie!
Meet Jackie George
Hometown: San Clemente, California
How did you learn to surf? I grew up at the beach and learned to surf so young that I barely remember learning! I do remember early mornings at San O with my dad and his buddies. I remember the doyle sessions at Junior Lifeguards. I remember my first real surfboard was the Hobie Peter Pan Slug (still love that board). I didn’t really take surfing too seriously until High School, when my girlfriends and I would get dropped off at Trestles and spend long days on the beach. We all loved surfing and pushed each other to get better. To this day, we’re still close friends and love surfing together.
Favorite board at the moment? My new Christensen log that I scored in a trade. I’ve also been indoctrinated into the twin fin revolution program here in Costa Rica.
What’s playing on the speaker while you gear up for a surf? Cardi B, Yoncé, or some dirty dirty dancehall beats. I’m also always up for praising Jah a bit before a surf.
If you could have one super power, what would it be? Teleportation. Or breathe underwater. Or know every language.
Dawn patrol or sunset session? DP is always more reliable… but when sunset comes together, it doesn’t really get much better.
Name a surfer that inspires you: I’m inspired by the people that can surf any craft in any conditions and have a good time. I’m inspired by the people twice my age that can surf twice as long as me, and I’m inspired by the people that only come out when the waves are properly pumping. I love watching good longboarders ride shorter boards in heavy waves. I’m a sucker for a relaxed style, and anyone that can do a cheater five in the tube. I’m also inspired by ladies that come on the retreat and look at surfing with a fresh perspective. Inspo everywhere!
Favorite quote: “Be here now.”
Stay tuned for the next Q&A with SWA’s other half, Holly Beck!
Feeling neck tension from sitting at your desk all day? Or from a long surf-session? Woke up on the wrong side of the bed? Need a little yoga fix-me-up?
block. neck. magic.
It’s the most requested yoga sequence during most of our retreats, and if you’ve been on a retreat with SWA before, I’m sure you already know exactly what we’re talking about! Its simple. Its magical. It feels so good. Its also pretty difficult to replicate without the guidance of a teacher, so we’re extra stoked that our yoga teacher Reesie just released an 11-minute tutorial video of the infamous, “block neck move”. This stretch-massage duo for the neck has yet to be named, so try it out and let us know if you can come up with a good name for it!
Unwind with another virtual Yin Yoga class brought to you by SWA instructor Reesie and her adorable lil’ pup Ruban. Although we can’t practice Yin Yoga in the jungle with all of you as usual right now, we’re stoked to have access to the next best thing… which is Reesie’s donation-based Yin class right at home! Good music playlist and all. This hour-long Yin style class is centered around the hips.
Reesie is accepting donations for her classes through Venmo (@cherise-Richards) or PayPal ([email protected]) but in her own words, “…if you can’t, dude I get it. Either way, hope this feels good!”.
If you missed Reesie’s most recent shoulder class, you can find it here. Enjoy!
One of the first weeks we hosted a retreat at our Longboard Surf House we scored an incredible swell and the long left point breaks right out front were firing for the ladies. This location is great for learning to surf, learning to cross step, and also short boarding. We call it the longboard surf house because there’s an incredible longboard wave out front, but if you ride a shortboard there are waves for you too.
How to Catch more waves with the Coco Chanel Paddle
Everyone knows the Coco Chanel logo right? The two interlocking Cs are not just a sign of luxury, but also a great way to paddle. If you want to have the most efficient paddle technique you need to increase the length of your stroke. Paddling in the shape of a C achieves that. If you use the Coco Chanel Paddle you’ll be covering more distance faster. That means more waves and fewer turtle rolls! This video will take you through some things to do and others to avoid to improve your paddle skills and have you catching more waves!
Why it’s best to learn to surf from women
At Surf With Amigas, we take a humorous approach to teaching surf skills. You’ll learn to turn with your boobs and to avoid paddling like a T-Rex. You’ll also hear that you should paddle like the Coco Chanel logo. Come learn and laugh with us! That’s the difference of a surf camp run by women!
The spot we surf in Northern Nicaragua for our women’s surf yoga retreats is ideal for improving your longboarding skills. This particular week in mid December 2017 had awesome super long lefts and rights that were great for all surfing levels. Some ladies were working on just standing up for the first time, while others were working on cross-stepping and trying to nose ride. No matter your current ability, we will individualize our coaching to make sure you get the help you need to achieve your goals.
Of course it’s not all about surfing. We also offered daily restorative yoga sessions, played kickball with local ladies, hiked and then boarded down a volcano, and enjoyed the gorgeous scenery of Nicaragua.
Check out the video highlights from the week!
Come and join us on our next retreat!
All our available dates are listed on the schedule page. We will be adding more for winter next year very soon.
Beginning October 2018 Surf With Amigas will be taking over a gorgeous ocean-front hotel in Northern Nicaragua as our new home base.
Stay with us for a surf yoga retreat in Nicaragua at our new retreat base and watch the waves at “the Bay” all day! The Bay is a sand bottom break that features great waves for experienced surfers and also super fun user-friendly waves for beginners. This is the very best spot to learn to stand up for the first time. It is also a great spot to work on nose riding, cutbacks, generating your own speed, and doing turns. This is the spot to surf twice a day.
Of course we’ll also do some driving and boating missions to surf other spots depending on conditions and desires of the group. There are lots of other surf options nearby. We are very excited about the ability to be in tune with the ocean, easily surf multiple times per day, and be on it whenever it’s good!
A Boutique Resort in Northern Nicaragua
The resort features four stylish ocean-view, thatch-roof cabanas. Each cabana has its own ensuite open-air bathroom, relaxing hammocks and lounge spaces. There’s a refreshing swimming pool for midday cooling dips. There’s a brand new ocean-view yoga studio, and stylish bar and restaurant space to enjoy healthy delicious meals.
We are excited to have the opportunity to curate the entire Surf Yoga Retreat experience from the vibe at the resort to the meals.
In the past we have partnered with resorts on a week by week basis using their restaurant and staff. This new situation will be all Surf With Amigas from the delicious healthy menu to the music playlist.
Fewer cabanas mean smaller groups and more retreat dates per year beginning mid October 2018. We’ll be updating the schedule and uploading more photos and videos soon!
Surf coaching retreats for women and men in Costa Rica
If you’re looking for high level surf coaching open to primarily women but also sometimes men, Surf With Amigas is the place! This particular video highlights a co-ed week that was open to women and their boyfriend, husband, brother, or best guy friend.
Surf With Amigas focuses on locations where we can take over the lineups and get a ton of waves. It’s true that Costa Rica can be crowded, but not every surf spot is full of people. We will find empty waves! The area we’ll stay is further off the beaten path of tourists. We will stay surrounded by jungle, watching monkeys jump from tree to tree. We’ll surf with sea turtles. We’ll watch scarlet macaws fly overhead.
For more information on our Costa Rican Retreats, click here!