UK. WALES. BARRY ISLAND. Introducing Kerry Baker, an ASI Level 3 SUP Instructor based on Barry Island, Wales. A keen surfer since the age of 14, she bought her first SUP 10 years ago and has competed in the UK SUP race scene between 2014 – 2018. She’s currently running her ASI accredited school Island SUP located at Jackson’s Bay, Barry Island bringing SUP to her local community and helping to achieve people’s SUP goals.
1. What is your background?
I have been a keen surfer since the age of 14, spending many years living in Cornwall and travelling around the world - USA, Hawaii, Australia, Portugal, France, Spain, Canary Islands and Sri Lanka.
I bought my first SUP a 10' C4 Waterman in 2010 when I moved to Wales from Cornwall as a small wave alternative.
2. What got you involved in the sport?
During the summer of 2013 I paddled from The Mumbles, Swansea to Penarth Pier, Cardiff for charity and enjoyed it so much I decided to get involved with the UK SUP race scene.
I competed from 2014 - 2018 in the race and SUP surf scene, I met many wonderful people and raced in some incredible locations. I achieved UK Naish One champion 2016, UK 14' champion 2017 and I also represented Wales at the ISA SUP and Paddleboard World Championships 2017 placing 13th SUP sprint.
3. Why did you become an ASI instructor?
I wanted to share my SUP skills with my local community here on Barry Island and create a community club that would enable, encourage and empower individuals to take those first SUP steps or that next SUP step. I also wanted to support and inspire our local youth.
4. What are you doing now?
I run Island SUP with a dedicated team, we offer club nights and weekend events for adults and youth, we run lessons for beginners, improvers, racers and those wanting to adventure in to the waves on their SUP.
5. What do you like about being an ASI instructor?
I love being able to share my love of SUP with my local community and beyond.
6. Has COVID changed what you do? How?
COVID hasn't changed what we do. This summer saw an increase in families wanting to share the experience of SUP together which has been absolutely lovely to witness, so many happy faces at such a difficult time.
7. Tell us about funny or interesting or nice situation that has happened to you with instructing?
During this season it has been an incredible feeling to bring such happiness, laughter, fun, excitement, fulfilment, and a sense of well-being to so many individuals and families through something I love so much.
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