How to Become an ASI Level 1 Surfing Instructor / Coach
ASI surfing instructor and coaching training qualifications are the world standard and highly regarded in the industry.
It’s the best job in the world! Combine your love of surfing with a career.
Follow the seasons and work around the world.
An ASI Surfing Instructor is part of the ASI worldwide community. Your qualification is international. You get to work with great people in amazing locations.
This course is your first step in becoming a surfing instructor. Instruct beginner level surfing lessons and activities.
First you should have:
at least 500 hours surfing experience
able to surf at the intermediate level (perform bottom turn, top turn, cutback on the one wave, on a shortboard), surf up 3-4ft. Read more..
Complete the ASI Level 1 Surfing Instructor course. Read course requirements
Submit a surf rescue certificate
Submit a first aid certificate
Complete 25 hours practical hours experience at an ASI surf school
How do I Enrol ?
Some locations offer first aid/surf rescue courses at the same time as the Level 1 Surfing Instructor course. So you can complete all requirements at the same time.
Time to Complete
You have 12 months from date of enrolment or workshop date to complete all course requirements.
About the ASI E-learning Platform
The ASI e-learning platform, is an easy to use and comprehensive. You can access training manuals, videos, reference materials and assessments.
What is the Minimum Age to Enrol in the Instructor Courses?
16 years of age.
However instructors under the age of 18 years old, cannot teach unsupervised unless they have an adult (18 years and over) accredited instructor supervising nearby.
Accredited Instructors under 18 years of age, are still counted for student to instructor ratios.
Can I enrol in Level 1, followed by Level 2, Level 3, at the same time.
No. You must have 12 months as an ASI instructor before enrolling into Level 2 and then another 12 months as an instructor to enrol in Level 3.
Exemption. You can enrol in all levels at the same time, only if you have previously been instructing for a minimum of 24 months and you have advanced surfing ability.
Do I need to be able to surf to enrol in ASI Surfing Instructor courses?
Yes. you need to have the skills and knowledge at ASI Intermediate Level 6.
Perform and link manoeuvres (bottom turn, top turn, cut-back on forehand) in 3 ft surf and be experienced surfing at beach breaks. More info-Surf Wise Level 6 Intermediate Surfer
You should have approximately 500 hours surfing experience before enrolling.
What happens if I do not pass the practical tests ?
You can submit assessments and/or video for re-assessment.
A re-assessment fee applies. See Reassessment Fees
You have 12 months to complete all course requirements.
Are completed at ASI Accredited Surf schools. Find Schools on the ASI website.
Other surf schools may be acceptable (contact ASI for approval)
We can also assist finding a surf school, if required.
Practical hours are completed only after you have passed the course requirements.
(1) Where can I do my practical hours?
You can organise to do your practical hours with the Trainer. You will need to contact the trainer and ask if they have availability. The trainer details are listed on the actual training event/workshop page on the ASI website.
You can find an ASI accredited surf school on the ASI website
You can do your practical hours with a non ASI surf school you plan to work for. Please send us the name of the school, location and website and we can check their suitability.
RPL of your practical hours can apply. If you are deemed competent at the workshop, have prior extensive experience delivering outdoor water activities and hold another outdoor watersports qualification (eg canoeing, windsailing, SUP, kitesurfing, bodyboarding).
(2) There is no ASI School near me to complete practical hours / There is no surf school near me that can offer me practical hours
At the workshop, the trainer will discuss how you can complete your practical hours based on your experience and ability. Where an ASI school is not near you, a variety of options is available including completing hours at a non ASI school and / or if you are an experienced outdoors recreation instructor in another watersport, you may be able to complete your own hours and provide video assessment of delivery. We will prepare a simple plan for you.
Contact us to discuss options if you are completing the online course.
First Aid Certificates
First Aid certificates that are acceptable. Click here
First Aid at Work or Online first aid certificates are not acceptable.
At a minimum your first aid certificate must include at least 6 hours of face to face training.
These are usually 1 day to 2 days training with combination of online learning and face to face training. Valid for 2 to 3 years.
First Aid certificate must not be expired and no more than 3 years old from date of issue.
(1) Do I need to hold a first aid certificate before enrolling in the ASI Instructor courses?
No. You have 12 months after the workshop date to provide it to ASI. Your instructor certificate will not be issued until we receive your first aid certificate.
(2) What is a “current’ first aid certificate?
The certificate date must not be expired. Certificates that are more than 3 years old are not accepted (even if the expiry date is longer).
(3) What First Aid Certificates do you accept?
Senior or secondary first aid certificates (a similar term). It is not just basic CPR.
The course topics should cover the types of incidents that could occur to your students. At a minimum, it should include: basic emergency care for injuries and illnesses: CPR, cramp, hypothermia, heat stroke, strain/sprains, fractures, breaks and dislocations, breathing emergencies including choking and asthma, head injuries, eye injuries, bites and stings, bleeding, shock, epilepsy, allergies.
In Australia, the certificate must be from a Registered Training Organisation and be the course code HLTAID011 or HLTAID003. These are valid for 3 years.
(4) Do you accept online first aid certificates?
No. The First aid training must have a face to face component.
(5) I completed first aid in my surf rescue course. Is that acceptable to ASI .
In some countries, the Surf Lifesaving and Lifeguard qualifications includes senior first aid training. These combined Surf Rescue and First Aid Certificates are acceptable.
e.g UK, Spain, Portugal, Bali, USA
In Australia, the Surf Lifesaving Bronze only includes basic first aid. A separate senior first aid certificate must be completed.
In other countries, senior first aid training is generally separate to the surf rescue training.
ASI has listed some Surf Lifesaving that are acceptable. Click here
(6) I am a paramedic or nurse. Do you I have to provide a first aid certificate?
No. But you must provide evidence / certificate / letter from the hospital you work for that states you are current in first aid.
(7) Do I need to update my First Aid certificates?
Yes. For your surfing instructor qualification to remain valid, you must keep your first aid current at all times.
Make sure the certificate has not expired or is no more than 3 years old from the date of workshop.
Surf Rescue Certificates
(1) What Surf Rescue Certificates do you accept?
A Surf Rescue Certificate is required.
ASI has listed topics required and some certificates that are acceptable. Click here
(2) Do I need to hold a surf rescue certificate before enrolling in the ASI Instructor courses?
No. You have 12 months after the workshop date to provide it to ASI. Your surfing instructor certificate will not be issued until we receive your surf rescue certificate.
(3) What is a “current’ surf rescue certificate?
It is a certificate that is not expired and is one of the following:
In Australia, the surf rescue certificate must not be older than 12 months from when it was completed/issued.
In other countries, the surf rescue certificate must not be older than 24 months from when it was completed/issued.
ASI does not accept surf rescue certificates older than 24 months (even if the expiry date is longer).
(4) I completed my surf rescue course 7 years ago. Is it acceptable by ASI?
You must hold a “current” surf rescue certificate.
In Australia the surf rescue is only valid for 12 months.
In UK and other countries it is valid 24 months.
ASI does not accept surf rescue certificates older than 24 months. (even if the expiry date is longer).
(5) My Rescue Certificate is valid for 5 years. Will ASI accept this?
No. ASI only accepts surf rescue certificates up to 24 months (or 12 months for Australia) from date of the course / issue date.
(6) Do I have to hold Bronze Surf Lifesaving Certificate?
No. You can hold a Community Surf rescue certificate or equivalent.
(7) Can I provide a Swimming Pool Lifeguard certificate?
No. You must have a Surf Rescue certificate.
It demonstrates experience completing rescues in the surf.
(1) Do I have to renew my instructor certification?
Yes. Your Surfing Instructor accreditation certificate expires at least 12 months from the date of the training - to the nearest renewal date for the region.
Australia, Asia - 31 December
UK, Europe, Middle East, USA, Americas - 30 June
In your first year, you may be given more than 12 months to renew (but you will receive at least a minimum of 12 months).
Read more: Renewal Requirements
(2) Why do I have to renew each year?
You are a professional and this demonstrates you are keeping your skills and knowledge updated.
You don’t need to attend another course. Complete the online renewal form and submit relevant evidence.
Working in Other Countries
(1) Can I work in other countries with ASI qualifications?
Yes, ASI has been operating since 2003 and is the world leader in education and training accreditation in the surfing, stand up paddle and bodyboarding sections of the outdoor recreation industry.
(2) I did my ASI training in the UK (or another country) and I want to work in Australia. Do I have to pay any extra fees to be recognised?
No. You do not pay any extra once you have your ASI qualifications. There may be additional country certificate requirements e.g. your rescue certificate is only recognised for 12 months in Australia. You may be required to apply for a state based working with children check. The surf school you are working for will advise you of requirements.