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Van Curaza Surf School – The Company

The origins of Van’s surfing instruction trace back to 1984 in Pismo Beach along the coast of his Central California home, and developed through years of teaching experience in both individual and group camp settings. VCSS can teach first-time surfers the fundamentals of safety and ocean awareness; novices the timing and positioning through wave knowledge; intermediates dedication and progression; and advanced surfers the technical aspects of high-performance surfing. Even experts can learn something from Curaza, be it through personal coaching in a competitive context or experiencing the thrills of big waves. Sarah Gearhardt, the first woman to ever surf the infamous California big-wave spot Maverick’s, is a former Curaza student.

Van was the senior camp and surf instructor at the Richard Schmidt Surf School, the premier surf school in Santa Cruz since 1978. He further broaded his teaching experience while working with Richard Schmidt over the past five summers. This added to his instruction method – a unique teaching technique that separates VCSS from most other surf schools. Employed by every VCSS instructor, the technique involves quickly acclimating students to their oceanic environment and educating them about the ever-changing dynamics of catching and riding waves.

The VC Guarantee is "every student will stand up during the first lesson." And this extends to students of all ability levels.

Van and his crew of professionals offer surf lessons all year long and seasonal surf camps. The central coast is a beautiful area to come visit and for some of us to live. So come check out what we have to offer!