The Tura’i Mataare surf school in Tahiti (it means “pushed by the swell“) was founded in June 1995.
The first goal of this school is to allow everyone, from 5 years old, to learn the practice of surfing safely and with respect for the environment.
This is made possible by the equipment used (boards specifically designed for the activity) and, on the other hand, through supervision by specialists (state-qualified instructors, BEES 1 °, BEES 2 ° and lifeguards).
This school that is Polynesian by name and by its students has developed its services over the years according to the needs. Indeed, in order to always evolve and satisfy the many people who our school, it is now possible:
Every year, the Surf school welcomes over 200 students from a very wide age range, between 5 and 40 years old, from all social classes and fromall sectors of activity.
This school, the first created in French Polynesia, has originated several projects:
During school holidays, several kind of lessons are proposed.
It is important to know that groups have a maximum of 8 persons per instructor for beginners lessons, except for the kids lessons (between 5 and 10 years old) where the groups have a maximum of 6 children per instructor.
The spot is chosen from day to day depending on the weather, the age, and the level of the students.
The courses include a theoretical part on the beach and a practical part in the water, with an individual pedagogical approach to optimize progress for each student.
The equipment used includes a range of eight different board sizes, complying with current security standards for minimizing the risk of injury, as well as responding as much as possible to the physiological differences of each student. During the week, the process of ocean currents, winds and tides are explained to the student in order they become quickly autonomous.
Other actions are made each year since 1995 for helping disadvantaged young people.
Over 100 students followed by the Department of Social Affairs are taking intermediary and advanced surf lessons, for free. With this project, the top 15 students are selected depending both on their technical level (practice of the discipline) and on their behavior (within the group) and reward them at the end of the year with a surf trip (training course) in the Tuamotu. This training session on a reef spot, in Amanu for the next year, is also an opportunity for the students to familiarize themselves with the life in society (life in community for a week) and all its rules (preparation of the meal, repair the surf equipment, respect of the security rules…).
Every day, before starting the activities, a complete cleaning of the camp and these surroundings is done. For one hour the students are made aware of the importance of living in a clean environment in order to have a better hygiene. This camp also allows them to familiarize themselves with fishing techniques.
This project is organized in partnership with the Ministry of Solidarity and Family, the “Enfants du Fenua” association, and the different entities of the territory that are involved in the selection of young people taking part in these surf lessons. Priority is given to the most disadvantaged young people. After each training period, an evaluation of each young person is run, in order to provide the necessary guidance.
The Tura’i Mataare surf school initiated in 1997 a championship for young people between 8 and 16 years old, an unique championship still existing today in French Polynesia, the “TEEN’S SURF SESSION”.
This series of competitions is open to young surfers with 4 divisions , allows the Tahitian Surf Federation to select the best young people, in order to present them to international competitions.
For 3 years, the school has been participating in the organization of a new series of competitions in partnership with 4 other surf schools : “The Tamarii surf tour” gathered more than 100 participants this year.
The surf school Tura’i Mataare is also a partner of the paddle board competition organized in the municipality of Punaauia, the “Air France paddle festival”.
SURF ESPOIR SECTION
Since 2012 the surf school in partnership with the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Youth and Sport, and the Tahitian Surfing Federation have opened the “Surf Espoir” section in the sixth-form college Tuianu Le Gayic in the municipality of Papara.
Olivier NAPIAS, the only BEES 2nd degree in French Polynesia and Hira TERIINATOOFA, double world champion are the coaches. The “SURF ESPOIR” section encourages the practice and emergence of future surf champions, contributing to the influence of French Polynesia all over the world. It also values the action of the sixth-form college Tuianu Le Gayic, which for many years has been committed to the success of students in the country.
This section allows the practice of high level for young athletes, identified by the Tahitian Surf Federation, and brings together the material and pedagogical conditions for the academic success of these young people.
The “SURF ESPOIR” section provides students with educational facilities appropriate to the practice of high-level surfing, with a goal to access excellence and success for their studies. The partners offer them the possibility to success in both fields: school and sports.