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surfing team, Ben aims to develop the sport from grass roots to elite competitive level, and has coached a Welsh adaptive surfer who placed 5th and 8th in the world respectively at the last two World Adaptive Surfing Championships in California. Life without limits

This is going to be the best and most challenging year in terms of numbers. It’ll be tough to get enough volunteers, coaches, equipment and funds, and to get everyone down to the beaches. cover costs and find space for all the new kit, not that storage was readily available in those early days. “At the time, I was living in a flat with two of my mates, and my job at the school had just come to an end as the funding for it had finished, so I had no cash, certainly not enough to go and buy a surf school. “We suddenly had a surf school in our tiny flat. Squeezing past surfboards to get to the front door became a way of life. I had to share my bed with two surfboards for a couple of months, so it wasn’t easy,” he recalls. Positive growth Almost five years on, Surfability is firmly installed at Caswell, where Ben’s team can barely keep up with demand. “This is going to be the best and most challenging year in terms of numbers. It’ll be tough to get enough volunteers, coaches and equipment and funds, and to get everyone down to the beaches.” Much of the puzzle lies in correctly pricing Surfability’s services, such are the skill and energy levels required to optimise accessibility, while guaranteeing the care, expertise and personalised guidance that form the core of firm’s offering. “For a coach and disabled surfer to use the tandem surfboard, it might take four people to take one person surfing. Full training and payment for those coaches would make the lessons prohibitively expensive.

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“So, it’s finding that balance, raising the funds and getting enough support for it to be accessible for everyone really,” Ben says. Ben has also written a training course for the Welsh Surfing Federation and Disability Sport Wales, so that accreditation for adaptive coaching can be given. The organisation’s adapted surfboard has also been given an upgrade. As manager for the Welsh adaptive

But it’s back on the sands of Swansea that Surfability is experiencing its biggest blessings, and they’re arising as steadily and miraculously as the lines of a wellgroomed westerly swell. “I’ve got a student who is visually impaired and able to paddle the board, get to his feet and ride waves unassisted. People see that on the beach and they’re blown away,” Ben says. “This winter I’ve coached a guy who’s 50 who has one leg, and a 13-year-old boy with cerebral palsy. They want to surf every Saturday come rain or shine. It’s an honour to be able to help them. “We have quadriplegics and people with cognitive disabilities; they can’t swim but they want to surf every week. They don’t see barriers, so why should there be any?”

This winter I’ve coached a guy who’s 50 who has one leg, and a 13-year-old boy with cerebral palsy. They want to surf every Saturday come rain or shine. It’s an honour to be able to help them.

Profile for GBentrepreneurs

Great British Entrepreneurs Magazine (Spring 2018)  

This magazine brings incredible stories together in one place, helping to shine a spotlight on some of the biggest issues facing entrepreneu...

Great British Entrepreneurs Magazine (Spring 2018)  

This magazine brings incredible stories together in one place, helping to shine a spotlight on some of the biggest issues facing entrepreneu...

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