Surfing Australia Academy
Supporting Australian Athletes to Become the World’s Best Surfers and People
The Surfing Australia Academy is a 12-month high performance coaching program, combining year-round performance coaching and the highest quality education for surfing athletes in years 7 to 12.
The Academy is available to boys and girls in years 7 to 12 who are currently competing at a regional, state or higher level and aspiring to become a professional surfer.
It’s not about being the best; it’s about being your best and maximising your potential as an athlete, both in and out of the water.
2024 Academy Athletes
Mermaid Waters, QLD
Fingal Head, NSW
Malua Bay, NSW
Byron Bay, NSW
New Brighton, NSW
Mermaid Waters, QLD
Queenscliff Beach, NSW
Prioritising High Quality Education
Surfing Australia is proud to have Lindisfarne Anglican Grammar School as our official school-based education partner.
Lindisfarne is a high-quality, independent, Anglican, co-educational grammar school that serves the southern Gold Coast, Tweed Coast and northern New South Wales.
Lindisfarne provides the distinctive identity, relationships, learning and leadership that will support Academy athletes in achieving their surfing potential, without having to compromise their education.
Academy Head Coach: Bede Durbidge
Bede Durbidge is without doubt one of the best coaches in the world with an unmatched love, passion and knowledge of surfing.
With 13 years on the WSL Championship Tour, 11 final appearances, 3 event wins (including a Pipeline Masters), 3 years ranked in the top 5 and a runner up finish to the World Title in 2008, Bede was one of the most successful competitive surfers of
Bede’s coaching experience is equally impressive having spent 4 years as Surfing Australia’s Elite Program Manager, Head Coach of The Irukandji’s Australian Surfing Team and privately coaching some of the best athletes in the world.
Jared de Thierry
Applications for 2025 Academy positions will open on October 7th, 2024 and close on November 1st, 2024.
Applications can be submitted using the ‘Apply Now’ button below. Please note that you will need letters of reference, copies of recent school report cards and NAPLAN results to finalise your application.
After reviewing all applications, Surfing Australia will contact a shortlist of applicants who have progressed through to the interview stage.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do Academy athletes get selected?
Athlete applications are reviewed by a selection panel made up of Academy coaches and Surfing Australia’s High Performance staff. Successful applicants will demonstrate that they surf at an advanced level, have competitive experience and apply themselves academically.
Do I have to attend Lindisfarne to be in the Academy?
Yes, Academy athletes will be required to attend Lindisfarne on a full-time basis but Surfing Australia will grant a limited number of exemptions for non-Lindisfarne students.
How much are Lindisfarne school fees?
Full details on the Lindisfarne enrolment process and fees can be found on their website.
Are Academy athletes guaranteed a place at Lindisfarne?
No, Lindisfarne is under no obligation to take or retain the enrolment of any Academy athlete and reserves the right to manage enrolments per existing processes and at the discretion of the school’s principal.
Do athletes have to commit to the full 12 months?
Yes, this is a 12-month program and athletes participate in all four school terms.
When are Academy fees due?
Academy fees are paid in 4 x term instalments. Full payment for each term is due prior to the commencement of the term i.e. term 1 fees are due prior to the commencement of term 1.
- Term 1 fees: $3,000
- Term 2 fees: $3,000
- Term 3 fees: $3,000
- Term 4 fees: $3,000
How many athletes are accepted into the Academy?
The number of athletes will be confirmed once the application window has closed.
Who will be my coach?
Academy surf coaches include Bede Durbidge, Michael O’Rafferty, Tru Starling and Maddison Phillips. Physical preparation is led by Renia Korvin and Jared de Thierry.
Who provides transport to and from sessions?
Monday and Wednesday Sessions
Parents are responsible for getting athletes to the beach at 6.15am for surfing sessions between Hastings Point and Coolangatta. Coaches will advise on the selected locations the evening prior to each session.
Surfing Australia provides transport from the beach to Lindisfarne and surfing equipment is stored securely at the HPC.
Parents are responsible for a 4pm drop-off and 5pm pick-up from the HPC.
Parents are responsible for an 8am drop-off at the HPC for Thursday sessions and Lindisfarne provide transport from HPC to Lindisfarne at 12.30pm.
Why are athletes required to have a dedicated Academy board and wetsuit?
This allows athletes to continue catching the bus home at the end of each school day. Academy coaches will transport athlete equipment back for secure storage at the HPC after each session and then bring it to the next session.
Is the Academy recognised as a school subject that goes towards an athletes Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR)?
No, Lindisfarne Anglican Grammar School administers all educational components of the Academy program.
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