Who are Surfing Mums Incorporated?
Surfing Mums Incorporated is a not-for-profit association that supports a network of mums that surf and who meet at the beach to alternate childcare duties enabling mums to enjoy some time in the surf. Our groups are situated wherever mothers surf and involve mothers of varying surfing abilities and different surf crafts (longboards, shortboards, bodyboards, kneeboards, stand up paddle boards bodysurfing etc), and mothers of children of different ages (from 1 day old to 18 years and beyond). We also encourage fathers and other carers to join our group.
Surfing Mums Founder Vanessa Thompson
catching another beautiful Byron Bay roller
Why have Surfing Mums Inc?
Not only the dream but the need to surf is like needing the air we breath or the water we drink. As a surfer before children, we were only limited by our work, or by other commitments, but there was always some time during the day when you could make it down to the surf. Then we had children and suddenly we had a 24 hour 7 day a week commitment, children didn’t give us time off for an early or late surf, they sure didn’t care when the surf was good and we would have been happy with just a 20 minute paddle.
No, these little bundles of joy did not give any leave way for a surfing mum. Sure we got the occasional paddle on weekends when a partner or friends would look after our little ones, but was that really enough? It was not enough for two women living in a town blessed with endless waves and one of the most perfect right handers in Australia.
Where did it start?
Vanessa and Julia live in Byron Bay on the East Coast of Australia. Byron Bay is a town founded on surfing and a little bit of whaling way back then. The Pass, Wategoes, Broken Head, Belongil and Tallows make up some of the best surf spots on the East Coast all within a 10km (6 mile) radius. How could two surfing girls sit on the beach with their babies and watch glorious waves pass them by everyday?
The perfect partnership
Well they couldn’t. Vanessa and Julia set up a partnership where one mum would watch the two children on the beach while the other one got in a 30 minute surf, and vice versa. So they went from the occasional desperate surf to surfing everyday. Now the children are 2 and 3 years old and the mums are only limited by the occasional work commitment and day care days where they get to surf together for a change!
Now they couldn’t keep this new found secret to themselves. Every surfing mum had to have the opportunity to surf as much as they wanted or needed too. So Surfing Mums was formed. Surfing Mums is a group based at your local break where you can meet other mums and form the same partnership that Julia and Vanessa did. One year later Surfing Mums then took the big step in January 2008 of becoming an incorporated association. A real surfing club for mothers was born.
How it works
Surfing Mums Byron Bay
The different groups meet once a week, fortnightly or once a month, and this is just a time to catch up on surfing news and share stories of your month. If the surf is good, then they get some waves in too while the kids play with their new little friends on the beach. This is also a time to meet other mums and set up your own regular surf dates if you like.
Mums often ask "How will I know if my child is safe while I am in the water?". The only way to do this is to form the relationships with the other mums before you start 'beach sitting'. Meet up a few times on the beach before you leave your child with your new surfing mum friend, then maybe start with a few short sessions, as your confidence builds you'll soon be surfing for up to an hour before its your turn to swap and let the other mum go out for a surf. It is however ultimately your responsibility to ensure the safety of yourself and your child. We are only coordinators of this activity and all participation is voluntary.
Check . If there’s not, why not consider establishing one? We can help with flyers and promo advice. Catch up on group news by subscribing to our blog or read up on anything that relates to women, kids and surfing in the articles section. Need some more information? Check out our FAQs or feel free to contact us with your questions.
Association Official Information
Surfing Mums Incorporated (INC9888696) has certain rules and regulations that we must abide by legally to retain our incorporated association status and all the benefits arising from this legal status.
The Association is valid in Australia and New Zealand only.
Committee Members for 2012/2013
Click on the links to the right to download copies of our rules and policies
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