Unit of competency details

SISOSRF410A - Instruct advanced surfing skills (Release 2)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by SISOSRF006 - Lead surfing activities, advanced manoeuvresNot equivalent. Title changed. Unit focuses on leadership skills at time of delivery; planning removed. Planning skills for leaders covered in SISOPLN001, SISOPLN002, SISOPLN004 & SISOPLN005. Significant changes to performance criteria and knowledge evidence. 10/Sep/2019
Supersedes and is equivalent to SROSRF010A - Instruct intermediate to advanced surfing skillsE Updated and equivalent to SROSRF010A Instruct intermediate to advanced surfing skills 06/Jun/2011

ReleaseRelease date
2 (this release) 28/Nov/2011
(View details for release 1) 07/Jun/2011


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 092103 Sports Coaching, Officiating And Instruction  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 092103 Sports Coaching, Officiating And Instruction  18/Nov/2011 
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Modification History

Not Applicable

Unit Descriptor

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to instruct intermediate to advanced surfing skills. This unit focuses on planning, instructing and evaluating instructional surfing sessions to enable participants to achieve the skills and knowledge required to participate independently, or with minimal supervision, in intermediate to advanced surfing activities.

Application of the Unit

This unit applies to those working as surfing instructors in a range of intermediate to advanced level surf conditions with waves above 1m. This unit may also apply to outdoor recreation leaders working for outdoor education or adventure providers, volunteer groups, not for profit organisations or government agencies or those working as surf lifesavers that run associated surf survival and awareness programs for students.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

No licensing, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.


SISOSRF202A Demonstrate basic surfing manoeuvres in controlled conditions

SISOSRF303A Perform intermediate level surfing manoeuvres

SISOSRF406A Perform advanced level surfing manoeuvres

SISOSRF407A Perform rescues in moderate to difficult conditions

Employability Skills Information

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements and Performance Criteria



Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the Evidence Guide.

1. Plan a surfing session.

1.1. Establish participant's needs and characteristics .

1.2. Assess participant's current surfing knowledge in order to determine the session's aims and objectives .

1.3. Determine an appropriate instructional plan  according to participant's needs and characteristics.

1.4. Develop a surfing plan  according to participant's needs and characteristics, relevant legislation  and organisational policies and procedures .

1.5. Identify potential hazards  associated with surfing and minimise risks  according to organisational policies and procedures.

1.6. Access relevant sources  to interpret detailed weather and environmental information  and determine contingency plans .

2. Select and organise equipment and resources.

2.1. Select and access equipment  and resources  according to contextual issues  and organisational policies and procedures, and check serviceability.

2.2. Check equipment for safety and suitability according to relevant legislation and manufacturer's recommendations, and adjust and fit to ensure personal comfort.

2.3. Check contents of first aid and repair kits to ensure suitability to the location and activity.

3. Brief participants.

3.1. Communicate instructions and relevant information  about the surfing session in a manner appropriate to the participants.

3.2. Encourage participants to seek clarification, information and feedback as required during the session.

3.3. Establish a suitable communication system  for participants to use while surfing.

3.4. Inform participants of known and anticipated hazards, safety and rescue  procedures and appropriate behaviour.

3.5. Check and confirm that all participant equipment is fitted and adjusted.

4. Instruct a surfing session.

4.1. Conduct introductory activities for participants to reduce the risk of injury.

4.2. Monitor individual participant's performance  during surfing session.

4.3. Apply clear and accurate instructional techniques  to impart activity specific knowledge , methods of manoeuvring , advanced surfing techniques , advanced or complex surfing manoeuvres  and safety and rescue procedures.

4.4. Inform participants of opportunities  to further develop their surfing skills and knowledge.

5. Complete post session responsibilities.

5.1. Retrieve, inspect, repair and store equipment according to organisational policies and procedures.

5.2. Provide opportunities for participants to identify their personal progress and satisfaction with the session, and give feedback as required.

5.3. Evaluate relevant aspects  of the surfing session and determine the level of learning achieved.

5.4. Identify potential areas of improvement for future surfing instructional sessions.

Required Skills and Knowledge

This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • communication skills to:
  • consult with participants to plan an appropriate surfing session
  • convey information about the safety aspects of the session
  • interact with participants to create a safe and positive environment
  • problem-solving skills to:
  • plan surfing sessions according to participant's needs and characteristics
  • address participant difficulties in developing techniques
  • anticipate and respond appropriately to non-routine situations
  • planning and organisation skills to:
  • source, allocate and coordinate resources, equipment and a suitable surfing site
  • monitor and evaluate progress
  • organise participants into manageable groups for surfing
  • language and literacy skills to:
  • produce surfing and instructional plans for the session
  • complete post session participant and self evaluations
  • instructional techniques to suit a range of participant's needs, characteristics and learning styles
  • emergency response skills appropriate to the location to enable initial response and or rescue in emergencies whilst instructing surfing.

Required knowledge 

  • legislation and organisational policies and procedures to enable safe conduct of surfing activities
  • site specific information to assist in the planning process and enable management of potential surfing hazards and any special restrictions applying to the area
  • equipment types, characteristics and technology used for surfing, the advantages and disadvantages of the range of equipment, and factors affecting appropriate selection of equipment
  • care and maintenance of surfing equipment to ensure prolonged life span and safety requirements
  • instruction techniques and theories applicable to a range of ages and learning abilities
  • intermediate to advanced surfing manoeuvres and common communication systems used between surfers and swimmers to reduce risk
  • sources of surf conditions and weather and environmental information to ascertain possible conditions and their effect on the session
  • surf environments, including types and features of waves and how to select waves to surf
  • the effect of wind, tide, swell and ocean floors on surf conditions and appropriate responses
  • surfing etiquette to surf safely alongside other surfers and swimmers showing a common understanding
  • beach zones and signs to avoid hazards and minimise risks
  • surf survival and self rescue techniques to remove self or others from trouble in the surf
  • hazards and risks associated with surfing in various surf conditions and how to avoid or negotiate these
  • emergency and rescue procedures relevant to the location to ensure risk minimisation to self and group.

Evidence Guide

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment 

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • plans and delivers information, explanations and demonstrations for surfing sessions to ensure activities are conducted safely according to participant's needs and characteristics
  • observes and monitors the progress of participants and provides constructive feedback and intervention to improve intermediate to advanced level surfing performance
  • uses and modifies instructional techniques and or activities to cater for a range of individual learning styles
  • evaluates and reflects on own instruction performance to identify strengths, weaknesses and areas that need improvement.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure instruction of safe surfing activities that reflect the needs and characteristics of a range of participants to demonstrate competency and consistency of performance.

Assessment must also ensure access to:

  • a suitable surfing site for the conduct of instructional sessions
  • a group of participants to take part in the intermediate to advanced surfing session
  • equipment such as suitable craft and safety and rescue equipment
  • resources and information regarding participants and location to accurately plan, instruct and document surfing sessions for a variety of participants.

Method of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess practical skills and knowledge. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • oral or written questioning to assess application of relevant legislation and organisational policies and procedures to safe conduct of all surfing activities
  • observation of safe surfing instruction, monitoring and adjustment according to participant's needs and characteristics
  • portfolio of surfing session plans
  • third-party reports from a supervisor detailing performance.

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role is recommended.

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Participant's needs and characteristics  may include:

  • age
  • cultural factors
  • previous experience
  • fitness level and physical capabilities
  • surfing skills and knowledge.

Session's aims and objectives  may include:

  • developing surfing skills and techniques
  • education
  • development
  • therapy
  • fitness targets
  • recreation.

Instructional plan  may include:

  • surfing activities and drills
  • duration of activities and drills.

Surfing plan  may include:

  • session's aims and objectives
  • date, time and duration
  • location
  • instructor and participant ratios
  • resources and equipment
  • food and water
  • weather details
  • safety requirements.

Relevant legislation  may include:

  • occupational health and safety
  • permits from authorities
  • environmental regulations
  • marine regulations.

Organisational policies and procedures  may include:

  • occupational health and safety:
  • assessment procedures
  • time and budget constraints
  • communication protocols
  • confidentiality of participant information
  • working with children
  • code of ethics
  • support personnel.

Hazards  may include:

  • temperature extremes
  • slippery or unstable terrain
  • dangerous animals and insects
  • stinging trees and nettles
  • dense vegetation
  • group management hazards.

Risks  may include:

  • hypothermia
  • heat exhaustion
  • injuries
  • exhaustion
  • lost party or party member
  • equipment and course failure.

Relevant sources  may include:

  • Bureau of Meteorology
  • media
  • land managers or agencies
  • coastal patrol or coastguard
  • volunteer marine rescue
  • local knowledge.

Weather and environmental information  may include:

  • satellite images
  • daily and weekly forecasts
  • maximum and minimum temperatures
  • event warnings
  • river levels
  • synoptic charts
  • high and low tide predictions.

Contingency plans  may include:

  • change in weather
  • change in surf conditions
  • equipment failure
  • participant's needs
  • unavailability of suitable surfing site.

Equipment  may include:

  • surfing equipment:
  • safety and rescue equipment.

Resources  may include:

  • appropriate clothing
  • food and water
  • teaching aids.

Contextual issues  may include:

  • weather conditions, including times
  • season
  • transport
  • location
  • trip distance and duration
  • group objectives
  • group size.

Relevant information  may include:

  • equipment and resource requirements, selection and use
  • safety procedures
  • possible hazards
  • intermediate to advanced surfing techniques
  • objectives
  • rules and codes
  • responsible and safe behaviour.

Communication system  may include:

  • calls
  • radio
  • hand signals
  • whistles.

Safety and rescue procedures  may include:

  • emergency response procedures
  • group management in emergency situations
  • emergency response, safety and rescue equipment
  • understanding of safety practices
  • symptoms, treatment and prevention of common surfing risks
  • correct fitting and undamaged equipment
  • use of communication systems.
  • appropriate spacing between participants

Participant's performance  may include:

  • use of appropriate communication system
  • advanced surfing techniques
  • advanced or complex surfing manoeuvres
  • surfing control and balance in various conditions
  • attitude
  • surf etiquette
  • negotiation of hazards
  • use and maintenance of equipment.

Instructional techniques  may include:

  • simple to complex
  • part to whole
  • chronological
  • known to unknown
  • D.E.D.I.C.T:
  • demonstrate
  • explain
  • demonstrate
  • instruct
  • critique
  • test
  • E.D.I.C.T:
  • explain
  • demonstrate
  • instruct
  • critique
  • test
  • I.D.E.A:
  • introduce
  • demonstrate
  • explain
  • apply

Required knowledge  may include:

  • advanced surfing techniques and manoeuvres
  • surf environment and conditions
  • surf and weather reading skills
  • minimal impact practices
  • risk and hazard management
  • equipment selection, use and maintenance
  • communication systems used in surfing.

Methods of manoeuvring  may include:

  • duck diving
  • press ups Eskimo roles
  • linking of advanced or complex surfing manoeuvres
  • forward and reverse strokes
  • forward and reverse sweeps
  • low support and rudder strokes, sit on kayaks only.

Advanced surfing techniques  may include:

  • appropriate wave selection
  • catching and riding wave
  • standing where appropriate to craft
  • traversing or trimming along the open face of the wave generating speed
  • performing and linking advanced or complex surfing manoeuvres in the critical part of the wave
  • maintaining control of the board.

Advanced or complex surfing manoeuvres  may include:

  • late take-offs
  • roundhouse cut-backs
  • vertical re-entries or snaps
  • floaters
  • tube riding
  • tail slides
  • airborne turns
  • 360º turns.

Relevant aspects  may include:

  • objectives
  • planning process
  • activity site
  • weather
  • equipment selection
  • clothing selection
  • food selection
  • instructional content
  • instructional technique
  • assessment technique
  • group feedback
  • directing techniques
  • rescue techniques employed.

Unit Sector(s)

Outdoor Recreation

Competency Field