Having a windsurfing lesson is a great way to fast track your progression and ensure you learn the correct techniques.
Windsurfing is not the easiest sport to learn by yourself, and trying to deal with the wind, waves, the sail, board, stance and hand position, it can all get confusing rather quickly.
However, windsurfing can be easy when there is an instructor telling you what to do.
Everything will make so much more sense during your lesson and you’ll be able to practice what you’ve learned after. This sets you up for having much more fun on the water for years to come!
If you are a beginner, then having a lesson is a must. You’ll be surprised how quickly you’ll pick up the sport and how addictive it is. Within 30 minutes of being on the water during your first ever lesson, you’ll be able to windsurf, I guarantee it!
Whether you are looking for a beginner, intermediate or advanced lesson will change your approach to finding a lesson.
Beginners and early intermediates can Google ‘windsurfing courses near me’ and find a local windsurfing centre that runs lessons. Beginners should look to have their first lesson on a lake or in a harbour where the water is likely to be flat and wind light. This will give you the best chance of success.
Those wanting to learn advanced techniques will be better off signing up to a windsurfing clinic. These group lessons are run by the best instructors in the UK, who will run these ‘clinics’ in the best locations at a time of year when there is likely to be strong wind.
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Where to have a windsurfing lesson
There are many windsurf clubs and centres around the UK coastline and on our inland lakes and reservoirs.
Here we have listed the main windsurf schools in the UK:
Andrew Simpson Watersports Centre
Eastern Road, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO3 5LY
Calshot Activities Centre
Calshot Road, Calshot, Southampton, Hampshire, SO45 1BR
West Wittering Beach, West Wittering, West Sussex, PO20 8AU
The Beach Littlehampton
Sea Road, Littlehampton, West Sussex, BN16 2NA
Ardingly Activity Centre Limited
The Lodge, Ardingly Reservoir, Ardingly, Haywards Heath, West Sussex, RH17 6SQ
Hove Lagoon, Kingsway, Hove, East Sussex, BN3 4LX
Royal Parade, Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN22 7LD
Northpoint Water New Lydd Road, Camber, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7QS
Bewl Water Outdoor Centre
Bewl Water, Lamberhurst, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN3 8JH
Dover Sea Sports
Dover Sea Sports Centre, Esplanade, Dover, Kent, CT17 9FS
The Haven, The Long Beach, Whitstable Harbour, Whitstable, Kent, CT5 1AB
Coverack Windsurfing Centre
Coverack Bay, The Cove, Coverack, Helston, Cornwall, TR12 6SX
The Pilchard Store, Polkerris, Par, Cornwall, PL24 2TL
Menherion, Redruth, Cornwall, TR16 6NW
The Royal Avenue , Exmouth, Devon, EX8 1DG
Roadford Activity Centre
Roadford Activity Centre, Roadford Lake, Broadwoodwidger, Lifton, Devon, PL16 0JL
SeaSports SouthWest Ltd
New Quay Street, Teignmouth, Devon, TQ14 8DA
Weymouth & Portland, National Sailing Academy, Osprey Quay, Portland, Dorset, DT5 1SA
The Watersports Academy
17 Banks Road, Sandbanks, Poole, Dorset, BH13 7PS, UK
Bristol Corinthian Yacht Club
Cheddar Reservoir, Axbridge, Somerset, BS26 2DL
Queen Mary Sailing Club
Queen Mary Reservoir, Ashford Road, Ashford, Middlesex, TW15 1UA
ESSA Water Activities Centre
Central Lagoon, Meadgate Road, Nazeing, Waltham Abbey, Essex, EN9 2PB
Docklands Sailing & Watersports Centre
235a Westferry Road, London, E14 3QS
Oxford Sail Training Trust
Farmoor Reservoir, Farmoor, Oxford, Oxfordshire, OX2 9NS
Draycote Water Sailing Club
Kites Hardwick, Rugby, Warwickshire, CV23 8AB
Bull Brigg Lane, Whitwell, Oakham, Leicestershire, LE15 8BL
Chase Sailing Club
Pool Road, Burntwood, Staffordshire, WS7 3QW
Grafham Water Centre
Chichester Way, Perry, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, PE28 0GW
Thrupp End Station Road, Lidlington, Bedford, Bedfordshire, MK43 0SL
Carsington Sports & Leisure Ltd
Carsington Water, Ashbourne, Derbyshire, DE6 1ST, UK
North Promenade, Hunstanton, Norfork PE36 6GB
Hickling Windsurfing Club
Hickling Broad, Staithe Road, Hickling, Norwich, NR12 0YW
Alton Water Sports Centre
Holbrook Road, Stutton, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP9 2RY
South Shields Sailing Club
River Drive, South Shields, Tyne And Wear, NE33 1LH
Derwent Reservoir Sailing Club
Blanchland, Consett, County Durham, DH8 9PT
Coquet Shorebase Trust Ltd
The Braid, Amble, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE65 0WU
Liverpool Watersports Centre
110 Mariners Wharf, Queens Dock, Liverpool, L3 4DG
Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre
Crosby Coastal Park, Off Cambridge Road, Waterloo, Liverpool, L22 1RR
Glossop Sailing Club
Torside Reservoir, Woodhead Road, Glossop, Derbyshire, SK13 7HX
Yorkshire Dales Sailing Club
The Clubhouse, Grimwith Reservoir, Hebden, Skipton, North Yorkshire, BD23 5ED
Mumbles Yacht Club
The Club House, 764 Mumbles Road, Mumbles, Swansea, Glamorgan, SA3 4EL
National Outdoor Centre, Caernarfon, Gwynedd, LL55 1UE
Bala Lake Foreshore, Bala, Gwynedd, LL23 7SR
Clyde Windsurfing Club
Castle Semple Visitor Centre, Lochlip Road, Lochwinnoch, Renfrewshire, PA12 4EA
Loch Insh, Kincraig, Kingussie, Inverness-shire, PH21 1NU
Burnside Cottage, Cornaig, Isle of Tiree, PA77 6XA
UK windsurf clinic instructors
Get Windsurfing – Phil Richards and Danielle Lucas
Windwise – Simon Bornhoft
What beginners should look for in a windsurfing school
Any windsurfing school worth their salt in the UK must be an RYA training centre.
RYA stands for Royal Yachting Association, and an RYA accreditation means the centre is up to standard for equipment, tuition and safety. You’ll see RYA flags outside the centre and you may be offered RYA windsurfing courses.
Whether you go for a 3 hour introduction course, or sign up to a 2 day RYA Start Windsurfing Course will depend on your budget and time. If you are wanting to buy windsurfing equipment and head out by yourself, then the 2 day course will give you all the knowledge and technique you’ll need.
How long does it take to learn windsurfing?
It takes 2 – 3 hours to learn the basics of windsurfing with an instructor. In this time you will be able to stand up, turn around and come back again. After a full 2 days of learning, you should be confident and competent enough to windsurf without an instructor in light winds.
To get going quickly in strong winds, it will probably take around 25 to 40 hours of windsurfing.
If you plan to learn and progress in the UK, it will take 2 to 10 years for you to get to an advanced level. This solely depends on how much you windsurf during this time.
What to bring and what to wear to your lesson
When you book your first lesson, the windsurf centre or instructor will tell you what to bring.
If you are a beginner you should just bring a towel, warm clothes, and if you have them, a decent wetsuit and wetsuit boots. If you don’t have a wetsuit, then the centre will provide one. All the windsurf equipment will be provided and should be included in the price of your lesson.
If you are doing a day or 2 day course, you may need to bring a packed lunch.
Remember to bring suncream if it’s a sunny day!
What time of year to book a windsurf lesson
You can book the windsurf course any time of year, but beginners should plan to have the lesson from May until the end of September. The air and sea temperatures will be so much warmer, making it far more enjoyable to learn the sport.
Intermediates and advanced windsurfers should plan to have the lesson in the autumn, this is when we get the best wind in the UK and the sea temperature is still warm.
How much does a beginner windsurf lesson cost?
Windsurf lessons are generally really good value and so much fun!
Expect to be in a small group of people who are the same ability as you. They are normally great for socialising and you’ll have a lot of laughs too.
The price of a windsurf lesson in the UK does not vary too much, but could fluctuate depending on whether equipment such as wetsuits are included in the price.
For a 2 – 3 hour introduction lesson, expect to pay around £40 to £60.
A 2 RYA Start Windsurfing Course will be £170 to £190.
About the author
Watersports Pro is managed by Ollie, who has been in the industry since 2007. A paddleboard and advanced windsurfing instructor, Ollie has travelled the world teaching these sports.
Now based on the South Coast of England, he shares his experience and knowledge on watersportspro.co.uk.