Accessibility is the Heart
This is the third blog post that fleshes out Surf ATL’s vision of connecting, growing, and fostering the joy of riding waves here in Atlanta. You can read the post about our overarching vision here, our first post within that vision about the budding community here, and the second post on a wave-focused surf culture here.
In this post, we will outline something that will be at the heart of everything we do — accessibility. We will break down barriers to riding waves.
Forms of Accessibility
Of course, there are multiple layers to accessibility.
The beautiful part about riding waves along the coast is you just need a board and a hope for swell. There is no fee or charge if you want to paddle out, outside of the costs that any other beachgoer may pay like parking or gas. If you are motivated enough, you can find a wave to yourself and learn as you go.
This creates a low barrier to entry for those who are interested.
Although we typically need various forms of technology to rides inland waves, and those technologies cost money, we can work toward creating an environment through our community where the cost barrier to entry is low for those who want to experience the joy of riding waves for the first time or ongoing.
Ability, Experience & Age
We group these together because typically they are related in that there is a wide swath of abilities and experience levels from beginners to intermediate or expert. Along with that, a beginner could be eight years old or fifty-eight years old.
Joy is an experience across all of these and riding waves should be experienced and encouraged across these parameters as well.
There are vast populations across the country and in Atlanta who may never see an ocean, much less ride a wave, due to location or means or both.
While they’ve likely had the opportunity to experience throwing, kicking, or shooting a ball, water-related sports and, to a greater extent, surfing is less inclusive to these populations.
And to say it bluntly, it sucks.
It’s not hyperbole to think about the potential happiness or life changes that may occur for massive populations if they experienced riding waves even once.
Another form of accessibility that is close to our hearts is for those who we would assume on the surface to be physically incapable of surfing.
It turns out many of those populations can surf and, obviously, love it as much as the rest of us!
Adaptive surfing is just another way to make the joy of riding waves accessible. And with the amazing therapists and hospitals we have in Atlanta, we should connect these populations with riding waves.
Access is Granted
We truly believe that via a strong community and the right technology and leadership, we can make wave-riding accessible across all populations in Atlanta.
This is something we will strive for each and every day and we can’t wait to make it happen with you.
So engage, share and connect!
Or if you want to reach out to us with questions, ideas, or just general good vibes, contact us here!