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Newquay Activity Centre

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Welcome To The

Outdoor Activity Instructor Academy

IN ASSOCIATION WITH

Newquay Activity Centre

Outdoor Instructor Training
Courses

OUTDOOR ACTIVITY
INSTRUCTOR
COURSE

INTENSIVE
SURF INSTRUCTOR
COURSE

COASTEER GUIDE
TRAINING COURSE

PADDLESPORTS
LEADER
DEVELOPMENT

FOUNDATION
SURF
TRAINING

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About Us

What We Do

What we do

Newquay Activity Centre has been delivering award winning activities to holiday makers, adrenaline seekers, the military and school groups for over 25 years, and is the leading provider of outdoor activities in Cornwall.

Located in Newquay, Cornwall, the Outdoor Activity Instructor Academy (OAIA) was born as a direct response to the huge demand for skilled and experienced multi-disciplined activity instructors in the fast-growing outdoor activity industry.

Launched from the solid foundation of NAC’s industry experience, the OAIA has developed in to its own entity, and is now the leading provider of surf and ocean focused instructor training in the UK, offering instructor training in: Surfing, Bodyboarding, Handplaning, Bodysurfing, Beach Lifeguarding, First Aid, Coasteering, Kayaking, Stand-up Paddleboarding, Canoeing, Coasteering, Bushcraft & Foraging and we’ve got more disciplines in the pipeline!

The OAIA prides itself on developing well-rounded, resilient instructors, equipped with both the necessary qualifications, and the currency of hands-on experience. This is a winning combination which tips our students for success, and enables them to hit the ground running in the Outdoor Activity Industry.

Why Train With Us

Why train with us

For over 20 years our knowledgeable and passionate coaches have pioneered the training of surfing, bodyboarding and coasteering instructors in Newquay, enhancing core qualifications with professional in-house tuition to build experience in all outdoor conditions. We’re proud to have trained hundreds of first-class instructors, across a spectrum of disciplines, many of whom have gone on to work all around the world!

The OAIA is not a stand alone course provider, it offers the huge advantage of being a sister company to Newquay Activity Centre, Women + Waves and Bodyboard Holidays, and our students enjoy a wealth of opportunities from these affiliations.

As Newquay Activity Centre, Women + Waves and Bodyboard Holidays are operational year round, our students have live training opportunities with customers throughout the course. This helps build real industry experience which can be logged to achieve required shadowing hours, and is also a great differentiator to make your application stand out when you begin looking for employment.

Our award-winning activities sit top of the Trip Advisor rankings with almost 3,000 5-star reviews for good reason. Our list of accolades include:

  • Centre of Excellence – ISA and Surfing England
  • Surf Lifesaving Great Britain Affiliated Training Centre
  • Europe’s first dedicated bodyboarding school
  • Globally recognised female surf collective
  • British Canoeing Delivery Partner
  • Adaptive ISA Coaches
  • Gold and Silver medal holder – Cornwall Tourism Awards
  • Silver medal holder – South West Tourism Awards

Our Mission

Our Mission

The OAIA training is industry leading, and our graduate students are the best in the business. So much so we include an internal interview as part of our OAIA course, because we want first dibs to hire you. We are so confident in our ability to nurture students into well-rounded, resilient instructors, that most of our team  are OAIA alumni. 

All we ask is that you meet us halfway. We promise to deliver the goods training wise; we’ll equip you with all the skills, confidence and experience you need to succeed. You just need to commit to the learning process and trust in your own instincts and abilities. If you dream it, you can do it.

  • Throughout the course, across multiple disciplines, the OAIA facilitates work experience opportunities with actual customers; this gives our students the chance to deliver real lessons rather than learn via role play
  • Our students get the opportunity to shadow a wide range of different instructors, learning different delivery styles, and insider tips and tricks from them all
  • OAIA students train at NAC, giving them a foot in the door of Newquays busiest and best outdoor activity centre, and valuable first-hand industry experience
  • Our expert Instructors and trainers will share the full scope of their industry knowledge and experience, holding nothing back to ensure OAIA students reach their potential
  • You’ll have access to the Women + Waves, Bodyboard Holidays, NAC and OAIC network and black book of industry contacts and partners; the world will be your oyster
  • The OAIA smooths your passage into the industry, and makes qualifying as an instructor in multiple disciplines a time and energy efficient process.

Join Our Community

JOIN OUR COMMUNITY OF INDUSTRY LEADING COMPANIES

The OAIA is not a stand alone course provider, it offers the huge advantage of being a sister company to Newquay Activity Centre, Women + Waves and Bodyboard Holidays, and our students enjoy a wealth of opportunities from these affiliations.

Newquay Activity Centre has been delivering award winning activities to holiday makers, adrenaline seekers, the military and school groups for over 25 years, and is the leading provider of outdoor activities in Cornwall.

Women + Waves is a female surf collective, and fast growing global brand. It promotes premium womens surf coaching in a friendly and safe environment. Women + Waves has its own inhouse developed coaching style and specialises in teaching surf theory alongside water skills. All learning is underpinned by top quality surf photography in depth video analysis sessions.

Bodyboard Holidays is the ultimate provider of quality bodyboard tuition and guiding in the best, hand-picked, locations on the planet. Using experienced, highly trained instructors, their in-house developed techniques ensure clients all come away with vastly improved skills. The focus however is always to maximise fun, both in and out of the water.

As Newquay Activity Centre, Women + Waves and Bodyboard Holidays are operational year round, our students have live training opportunities with customers throughout the course. This helps build real industry experience which can be logged to achieve required shadowing hours, and is also a great differentiator to make your application stand out when you begin looking for employment.

For the right candidates, employment opportunities exist within all of our companies; so if you are passionate about our brands then the OAIA could be your fast track ticket to become part of our community.

Cornish Life

Cornish Lifestyle

Live the Cornish lifestyle

Newquay is our home and we couldn’t be more proud to welcome OAIA students to this relaxed and friendly surf town. It’s a place filled with independent retailers, artisan coffee shops, high-end eateries and epic beaches. There are surf shops to stock supplies and welcoming pubs for well-earned rests; you might end up staying a little longer than you expected!

Holiday makers are known as sightseers because they come to Cornwall to spectate. As an OAIA student you’ll be out in the elements everyday, come rain or shine, learning the intricacies of our tides and coastline, pushing your boundaries and stretching your comfort zone; you’ll be participating not spectating. 

Through the OAIA you’ll join a community of vibrant and passionate instructors. Our students come from all walks of life, and have a vast array of life experience, but they tend to share a similar zest for adventure and an inquisitive nature.

You’ll be welcomed into a community of course graduates in Newquay and further afield. Your mornings will revolve around dawnies, and magic seaweed will become your most frequently referenced app. You’ll become a salty haired coffee aficionado and a sun kissed connoisseur of almond croissants. You might not know your Tolcarne from your Towan right now, but by the time your finished you’ll know the north coast like the back of your hand.

If you can dream it, you can do it. Want it, seize it, gain it, live it.

Our Team

Rob Barber

Rob Barber

DIRECTOR & LEAD BODYBOARD COACH
Newquay Activity Centre owes its existence to creator, director and former European bodyboard champion Rob Barber. Having been introduced to the ocean as a child during summers on the beach, Rob found his passion in the water and went on to leave a lasting legacy in the surfing world.

Freddie Allen

Freddie Allen

ACADEMY MANAGER & TRAINER
A lover of dynamic water and full-on adventure, Freddie is never happier than when sea kayaking or coasteering. She’s a master with the go pro and the queen of bringing the stoke to all her sessions. She is a SLSGB trainer assessor, adaptive ISA surf coach, coasteer lead, paddlesport legend and all round good egg. The students on her last course nicknamed her the goat… it’s a fair assessment.

Mark Kelly

LEAD TRAINER
A real-life Action Man – if Action Man had an Irish accent and a profound connection to the great outdoors. Mark works hard all around the world to deliver safety training and advice to people who wish to spend more time outside in both professional and personal capacities.

Alan Stokes

Alan Stokes

LEAD SURF COACH
For those with even the slightest bit of interest in British surfing, Alan Stokes will need no introduction. Having won countless surfing competitions, and being widely regarded as one of the UK’s best surfers, 3 x British Champion Alan (or ‘Stokesy’ as he prefers to be called) is a major contributor to the Newquay Activity Centre surf coaching team.

Dan Metcalfe Sales Manager

Dan MetcaLfe

HEAD OF SALES
Dan joined the team in early 2021 after a successful career working with many of Europe’s best surf retailers. After working and surfing at some of the best beaches around the world, it’s great to have Dan’s experience and expertise here in Newquay.

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