About Us

ASI is the world's leading training and professional membership organization and international governing body for instructors, coaches and schools in the outdoor recreation industry for surfing, stand up paddle and bodyboarding.

ASI was established in 2003, and now operates in over 20 countries around the world.  ASI creates and sets the international standards and continuously investigates and researches industry practices and liaises with industry itself and government departments around the world, to ensure leading edge provision of education, accreditation, standards and safe practices.

ASI services:

  • Training:  we create and deliver industry specific skills training and instructor training courses. 
  • Business Accreditation:  we created the ASI school accreditation scheme where schools and activity centres can display the ASI accredited school logo as a mark of quality. 
  • Products:  we create and write industry specific publications.
  • Professional Membership:  we support Instructors and Schools to build a career in the industry, and business support to set up and run your own school  
  • International standard:  we created the international standard so instructors can work around the world 

If you want to learn for fun or want a career in the industry,  ASI can help you get there. 


ASI has a team of highly qualified people working across the world.   Read about the ASI Team. 


We represent our instructors’ member interests by providing them with the resources to professionally and safely deliver activities - including leading edge training courses and career progression, standards guidance, qualifications, renewal and annual accreditation certificates.

We represent our schools member interests by providing them with the resources to professionally and safely operate a school / activity centre  - including comprehensive operational systems with written policies, procedures, risk management, safety and operational forms, insurance, access to the ASI Sports Wise training programs and manuals with educational pathways from beginner to elite level, marketing guidance and profile, annual auditing and accreditation certificates. 


Setting the world standard in surf and paddle education. 


Create and deliver high quality and relevant training programs, create and monitor safe operating standards, support the career and professional aspirations of our members and provide THE international standard that is recognized and consistent throughout the world.


ASI operates in over 20 countries around the world.  Our head office is in Bondi Beach Sydney Australia, with offices in UK, Portugal, USA, Bali and Philippines.    


Education and Training 
ASI is a dedicated training organisation, governed by Government education department criteria.  We are the only organisation in this industry to hold such recognition.  It means ASI programs are of the highest educational and safety standard worldwide.  More info…..

Professional Membership 
Through its professional membership division, ASI provides:

- auditing and annual renewal of members accreditation status  
- member benefits    
- advocacy, standards research and standards creation
- international recognition 


Government approvals: 

  • Government Education Training Provider Status:
    Australia: ASI.  ASQA (Australian Skills Quality Authority) Education training organisation  Approval info
    Portugal: ASIP Lda.  DGERT (Directorate-General for Employment and Labour Relations). Education training organisation  Approval info    
    Portugal: IPDJ Approved (Instituto Português do Desporto e Juventude) Manages sports and surfing instructor training programs.   https://prodesporto.idesporto.pt/
  • Government Training Appointments: 
    Philippines: DOT (Department of Tourism). Official surfing instructor training provider for the Surfing Tourism Scheme. 
  • Government Endorsements:
    UK:  AALA Adventure Activity Licence Authority  AALA info 
    Australia:   NSW Parks and Wildlife  Approval info


  • Endorsed by the Australian Department of Education, with ASI training, assessment and resources undergoing strict audits to ensure quality is maintained.  More info…..
  • NSW Parks and Wildlife approved accreditation program provider (covers school operational, safety and environmental standards)
  • NSW Tourism Department, recognised surf school tourism accreditation provider (covers operational and safety standards) 
  • Recognised by all councils that have accreditation and instructor permit requirements.
  • NSW Maritime recognised provider for Stand Up Paddle waterways permits.


Department of Tourism - appointed as the sole surfing instructor training provider under the Philippines surf tourism scheme


Partnering with the Singapore Canoe Federation (SFC) to provide ASI SUP instructor training and access to ASI Accredited Schools for SUP lesson and activity requirements.   ASI conducts all instructor training and qualifies successful instructors.   More info

United Kingdom (UK)

  • Adventure Activity Licencing Authority (AALA) recognised training provider.  AALA is the government department of UK Health & Safety responsible for licencing adventure activity centres providing activities for children (under 18 years of age)
  • Cornwall Council (England) WAVES surf school licence scheme recognised provider
  • Broads Authority (covering Norfolk and Suffolk, England waterways) recognised SUP training provider
  • Partnered with Community Action Sports  (government funded initiative) to develop the Urban Surf program for youngsters from challenging backgrounds and currently delivered through ASI surf schools.  Urban Surf program awarded Inspire mark under the ‘London 2012 Inspire’ programme.


ASI was established in 2003, by Nigel Hutton-Potts and Tania Nesbitt.   Based in Bondi Beach Australia, Potts has spent his life surfing, and is highly respected in the surfing community in Australia.  Nesbitt, is a qualified accountant (CPA), with expertise in business systems and controls, troubleshooting and setting up compliance regulation for training businesses.  In response to the lack of recreational education and safety standards in the surfing industry, Potts & Nesbitt decided to set up ASI that would identify surfing standards and create and publish learn to surf books.  They were then asked to create surfing instruction qualifications and accreditation standards in Australia, by surf school owners, who were disillusioned by the current sports association’s educational standards.   

People around the world heard about ASI, wanted to be part of ASI and wanted to be trained by ASI.  Stand Up Paddle standards were created by ASI in 2008 and bodyboarding in 2010.  

What originally started as a hobby by Nesbitt and Potts, producing some learn to surf books, has developed into an international organisation, known for its professionalism, innovation and quality.    


2003: ASI developed the international standard for instructors and school accreditation, and was the FIRST and only organisation offering international training and accreditation. 

2008: Published a 450 page research report into Council (local government) permit and tendering requirements for Surf School operations in Australia


  • Identified and created the learn to surf skills framework for beginner, intermediate and advanced levels and covering 10 levels of progression skills. There was NO identified surfing skill levels previously.
  • Created and published the complete set of learn to surf manuals for beginner, intermediate and advanced levels, sold worldwide
  • Created 4 levels of surfing instructor qualifications and career pathways.
  • Created the ONLY Traditional Surfing Judge criteria and judges certification (covering loggers, timber and pre 78 surf craft)
  • ​Created the world’s FIRST instructor qualification for teaching improver-intermediate skills. 

Stand Up Paddle  

In 2008, ASI was contacted by Jamie Mitchell, (world renowned paddle boarding champion) for insurance. As a result, and together with Will Anido and Darren Borg (associates of Mitchell and elite paddlers), ASI created the world’s FIRST stand up paddle qualifications, educational SUP terminology, framework and school operating standards.   

ASI offers an extensive range of SUP qualifications, educational courses and career progression. Recognized as the world’s best and caters for flat water, exposed waters, SUP surfing, downwinding, SUP rescue skills, SUP surfing judging, race skills, technical SUP skill analysis criteria suitable for video analysis, yoga and fitness. 

2014:  Created the Leash Up for SUP campaign.  This was in response to paddlers in many countries unaware that leashes were an essential safety aid.   The campaign was highly successful, with government agencies and sports associations following the ASI lead and promoting mandatory use of leashes when paddling. 


2010: Created the world’s FIRST bodyboarding accreditation standards for learn to bodyboard levels, instructors and standards for bodyboard school operations.