Watch This Video For Some Female Longboard Inspiration!

Our retreat locations in Northern Nicaragua are situated just a short walk from a big sandy bay with peeling rights and lefts. It’s our favorite playground in the area for both longboarding and shortboarding! With waves for everyone, the bay provides the perfect layout for us to connect to the ocean and just have FUN.

We hope you enjoy this surf video celebrating Amigas of ALL SURF LEVELS, ages, sizes, and backgrounds, catching super cute waves on their longboards in Northern Nicaragua!

 

 

Listen to Holly Beck on the Kookcast Podcast

Surf With Amigas Founder Holly Beck has many stories to tell. She recently chatted with Coach Chris on the Kookcast podcast to about her life as a professional surfer, owner of Surf With Amigas, and surf therapy facilitator. Listen in on real conversations about women’s surfing, overcoming fear, and more.

Click below to listen!

Founder of Surf with Amigas: Holly Beck

Elevating Female Surfers Who Are Breaking Stereotypes: A Visual Project

When we’re asked to collaborate with a few inspiring women in Northern Costa Rica to support a project that elevates the reality of diverse lineups of female surfers, we immediately said YES.
Our friend Ivana +  her team recently created a set of fine photography prints (soon to be transformed into a gorgeous coffee table book) that are being used to tell a different story about women’s surfing than traditional marketing tells. The project is meant to encourage girls and women around the globe to free themselves of stereotypes and limitations of their engagement in sports and recreation.

Below you can learn more about the project from Ivana herself-

I am the author and producer of the project Nature of Surf Women, which is a result of my passion of making a project about a new wave of female surfers that are breaking existing stereotypes of beauty, age, and strength.
I met the photographer, Gabriela Tellez, in 2020. She has a deep understanding of creating a narrative, so we did a test photoshoot in April 2020. Not only does Gabi have the artistic style I was envisioning for the project she also fits the profile of being a female photographer from Costa Rica with an international career. It was an instant match, so we decided to live and work together in Nosara for a year.

In Nosara, there is a diversity of female surfers and many were happy to join the project and to evolve in their relationship with their bodies, with nature, the ocean and surfing. We have photographed a total of 33 women ages 12-67 years old representing all surfing levels.

We just published our website with a number of limited edition fine art photography prints. Buying the images will help us raise funds for the next stage of the project which is a coffee table book design and publication. It will be a multimedia book that will use QR codes with sounds of nature from Costa Rica, original songs from some of the surfers portrayed in the book as well as their life stories.

Our goal is to apply for Kickstarter to introduce the project to the broader audience of women who love nature, surfing, and adventure, while also encouraging girls and women around the globe to free themselves of stereotypes such as beauty standards and limitations of their engagement in sports and recreation.
We are honored that Holly Beck joined our team and that she will share her life story as an introduction to the book.
Stay tuned as we will post you when we launch the project on Kickstarter.

Stay connected to the project here-

Q&A with Holly Beck: From Pro Surfer to Surf Therapy Intern

After a career as a professional surfer, SWA Founder Holly Beck ran off to Central America to find herself. She built Surf With Amigas (and a family) over the course of 11 years living between Costa Rica and Nicaragua. In 2021 she decided to move back to calling California home base.

The ocean was always a place holly went to escape and find healing.

Now, she’s pursuing a Master’s in Counseling on the path to become a licensed surf therapist. She’s interning with Groundswell Community Project and partnered with Jess Ripley to create and lead surf therapy programs in Southern California.

Q + A with Holly

Q: What do you hope to accomplish in working with women in the world of holistic surf coaching?

A: After spending the last 12 years involved in surf coaching, i’ve realized that beyond the physical tips like looking down the line, putting more weight on the front foot, and all the other common bits of coaching advice that i’m typically giving Amigas, there is often a mental component as well. Whether it’s the un-helpful voice of our inner-critic, a fear of bigger waves, anxiety about getting in someone’s way, etc., there’s a lot going on in our heads that affects our surfing performance. I’ve been really interested in exploring that internal stuff both in my own life and then also adding it to a coaching program to create a more holistic approach to surf coaching that would be even more effective in the water, but also spill over into benefits to someone’s personal life as well.

Q: You’ve made a few big career changes in the past year. Looking forward, what are you most excited about?

A: I see it all as just continued growth and improvement. I was a pro surfer for a decade and used that knowledge of travel, adventure, and surf skills to create a business geared towards helping women travel to surf. Then in a decade of running surf and yoga retreats, I realized how powerful the empowerment component really is. It felt so good to be able to facilitate travel and adventure and then realize that Amigas were leaving the trip inspired and empowered and even going home to make positive life changes as a result. Adding a more dedicated mental health component to the surf coaching just takes that one step further. So instead of a complete career change, I see it this new step a career enhancement. I’m still super stoked to take people surfing and help them achieve their surf goals, but if I can help raise someone’s awareness of what’s going on in their heads and how that relates to their bodies, then it becomes even more rewarding because I feel like I can have a positive affect on their relationship with themselves and other people around them. Making the world a better place! lol.

Q: What has been the most pleasant surprise in your new journey to becoming a licensed surf therapist?

A: I feel like i’ve learned so much about myself that has made me a better human in the awareness of my own patterns of communication and relating to others. I have a lot more compassion for myself and those around me for sure.

Q: What’s next?

A: There’s a four-week Holistic Surf Coaching program starting Jan 9, 2022, that will be a small group experience on Sundays at Trails in San Clemente, California. I’m also helping out with weekly (Thursday) meetups in Bolsa Chica!

You can find all the info here: surfwithhollybeck.com/coaching

 

Protecting Sea Turtles in Southern Costa Rica

TRAVEL WITH SWA, TRAVEL WITH PURPOSE

Each time you join a SWA retreat, you help to support important projects that impact the local communities aT our retreat locations.

For several years we’ve been supporting an amazing sea turtle conservation project in Punta Banco, a small beach community in Southern Costa Rica near one of our retreat locations. The project not only helps protect turtles from environmental threats and human consumption but also provides work opportunities for locals in the community. During retreats we’ve been lucky enough to watch the organization grow and help release hundreds of baby sea turtles alongside local volunteers.

In the last 7 years the project has been completely in the hands of the local environmental commission, which is part of the Punta Banco neighborhood association. While the focus with other organizations in the past used to be “just” conservation, the project now also tries to leave a positive socio-economic impact on the village community.

The project is almost fully funded by private donations which help the organization build hatcheries and pay local volunteers. Click here to learn more about the Punta Banco Sea Turtle Conservation Project and how you can support by adopting a sea turtle nest or donating to the project.