During 2013 when spending time in Fiji, an idea was formed to create a training organisation which encompassed a wide variety of oceans sports and related activities with its Head Office based in Cornwall, England.
Steve and Mandy West, Chris Rea and Ben Longhurst had close associations through a love of coaching and training. Steve had been the CEO for the Academy of Surfing Instructors (ASI) and had appointed both Chris and Ben as Trainers in the field of SUP. With Steve and Mandy's departure from the ASI, both Chris and Ben wanted to continue, but had concerns regarding issues of philosophy with the ASI, which meant a new organisation should be formed.
On Steve and Mandy's return from Fiji a meeting was held between the 4 founding members and the foundations were set for the creation of such an organisation.
Mandy West became a Director and Steve acted as a Consultant in the early stages and the name Water Skills Academy was born (on a road trip to Jersey) where Steve was running a SUP workshop. Much of the content for the WSA SUP Instructor Courses, was created and inspired through Steve's input and past work in the field of coaching and writing.
Since then, Mandy surrendered her Directorship but Steve remains on as a Consultant.
"I cannot recommend the WSA highly enough. My decision to remain impartial from the day to day running of the WSA was quite deliberate as I felt I could do more good in mentoring and in being a casual observer. Chris and Ben are two of nicest, most intelligent, knowledgeable and considerate guys you could ever meet and there standards are impeccable. On top of this, Chris runs one of England's busiest water sports schools in Cornwall (Harlyn Surf School) and is vastly experienced, while Ben is Manager of the Cardiff International White Water Centre in Wales."
Today the WSA Provides Instructor Training, Mentoring and Courses for:
Stand Up Paddle Boarding
Sit on Top Kayak Leader
Surf Lifesaving (GB)
Surf Coach Safety and Rescue
Overseas SUP Adventures