Everything you need to know to get started paddling at Sydney Harbour Surf Club

Booking in your first class on our App

Download the Sydney Harbour Surf Club (SHSC) App from apple iTunes or Android Play Store. Register as a new user using an email address. Once logged in go to the bottom of the App click the “buy $” button and then at the top of the page click “First Session FREE”. This will give you 1 credit, at the bottom of the App click “Schedule”. If you are a beginner to surf ski paddling, please click “Rose Bay” or “Mosman –Level 1 - Learn to Paddle class. If you have had surf ski paddling experience, you could book into our Level 2 – Flow/Technique class.

Note: You must have paddled in group sessions with a coach for at least 5 times before being eligible to do “Solo Paddling” at our clubhouse, which is you paddling unassisted and the responsibility of opening and locking the clubhouse.

Is there any signing up required or can I pay as I go?

Use our First session FREE to come and try it all out, then if you wish to do more paddling with us, simply purchase a 5 or 10 group class pack and pay-as-you-go. After a few weeks, if you are really loving the sport and want to paddle more regularly then our weekly direct debit memberships are much more cost effective. These weekly memberships can be suspended or terminated at anytime by emailing us to admin@sydneyharboursurfclub.com.au.

Do you supply the equipment?
Yes, we supply you a stable surf ski, paddle, PFD, plus a coach to get you started and show you everything you need to know about surf ski paddling. At both facilities we have hot showers and change rooms.

What do I wear?
Whatever water gear you have - rashie, board shorts, leggings. You will only get wet up to your knees when you are getting into the water, from there we put you on a stable surf ski and slow it all down so no one falls in. We paddle close to the beach so you can always pull in and take layers off. No shoes are required as we paddle bare feet and in winter we wear booties or wetsuit socks for warmth.

Is there parking?

Yes, at Rose Bay there is plenty of parking on New South Head Road, particularly on the water side between the Rose Bay Marina and Rose Bay ferry wharf.

At Mosman there is plenty of parking outside the Middle Harbour Yacht Club which is FREE before 8am and free to all Mosman residents.

Arriving at Mosman Clubhouse
Please arrive at least 10 mins prior to your session start time. We are located at Middle Harbour Yacht Club (75 Lower, Parriwi Rd, Mosman). Walk through the Yacht Club to the beach and on your right is our Clubhouse. As you walk past our clubhouse there are the women’s and men’s changerooms/bathrooms where you can leave your belongings. At the clubhouse your coach will set you up with the right equipment and get you on the water ready for the lesson.


Arriving at Rose Bay Clubhouse
Please park along the waterside of New South Head Road and then walk to the Rose Bay Marina (594 New South Head Road, Rose Bay) and to the right is a set of stairs down to glass sliding doors. Up to 10 minutes before your class scheduled time, your coach will be standing with those glass doors open. Closer to your start time the coach needs to return to the clubhouse to begin the session, there may be other paddlers arriving that can open the glass doors or in worst case scenario please call JoJo 0437126612 so she can call the coach.

You can purchase the glass door “key fob” on our app for $20 which will give you 24/7 access to the Marina. The “key fob” can then be collected from your coach at your next session, upon showing payment receipt.

Once you walk through the glass sliding doors, please walk ahead and over the walk bridge and turn right and left and out to berth 32, where you will see a 2-story high floating clubhouse. When you arrive to the floating clubhouse, please walk up the rear stairs and you can leave your belongings upstairs whilst you paddle, then walk down the stairs and come around to the front of the clubhouse where we enter the water.


Is the class still on in bad weather?
Yes, your class is still on rain, hail, or shine. If it is extreme lighting, we will cancel the class and notify you the night before. We run classes 51 weeks of the year, with the Christmas week closed. Paddling through Winter is beautiful and we cherish paddling in all seasons on the beautiful Sydney Harbour.
Can I Solo Paddle?
You must have paddled in group sessions with a coach for at least 5 times before being eligible to do “Solo Paddling” at our clubhouse, which is you paddling unassisted and the responsibility of opening and locking the clubhouse.

To Solo Paddle you need to buy Solo Paddling Packs (5 or 10 pack), unless on a weekly direct debit membership. Once you have booked into a Solo Paddling timeslot, you will need to direct message business owner Luke Horder 0405 444 311 to receive the current door padlock code, as this gets changed regularly.

When you head out for your solo paddle, you will need to close and lock the clubhouse while you are out paddling. When you return you can re-open the clubhouse put your equipment away correctly and please leave the clubhouse as you found it – tidy and secure.

Do I need any paddling experience? And how long does it take to progress through the 6 levels of Classes?

Our club offers a 6-level step by step progression, which is outlined on our website under "Rose Bay" and "Mosman" headings. We specialise in taking an absolute beginner and progressing them into a competent surf ski paddler.

Start in our Level 1 - Learn to Paddle classes on a stable V8 surf ski and after a minimum of 2 lessons if you feel ready, you can move up to our Level 2 - Flow classes. In the Flow classes it is a great opportunity to progress to the next level surf ski the V8 Pro. When you are gliding the surf ski and pulling the blade through the water with power then come try our Level 3 - Cardio class, then onto our Level 4 – Turbo.

From Level 3 – Cardio classes you can make the step towards our “Intro to ocean” and build towards our Level 5 - Advanced Ocean classes.

The speed in which you progress up through the class levels depends on your stability in the surf ski. The more stable you are, the more power you can generate and the less drag on the surf ski. Stability is sped up by great posture in the surf ski and paddling regularly gives you a better feel for the surf ski in how it moves through the water.

We are here to help you every step of the way, with our experienced surf ski coaches improving your technique at every class. If you have any questions about your progress and looking for a guide, please don’t hesitate to call Head Coach/Business owner Luke Horder 0405 444 311.




What are the age requirements to paddle?
Reaching the foot pedals would require a person being 15yrs or older.
For a teenager to paddle at Sydney Harbour Surf Club they would need to be accompanied by their parent at all times and come through our Level 1 – Learn to Paddle classes.
1 on 1 Private Lessons
1 on 1 Private lessons are a great way to get started if you feel uncomfortable starting in a group. Keep in mind our level 1 – Learn to Paddle classes are less than 5 people to keep it private with high attention focused on each paddler.
1 on 1 classes are perfect to really take your time with the instructor and learn the basics of surf ski paddling. If you wish to start with a friend we recommend booking 2 x 30 min timeslots to give the instructor enough time to focus on both paddlers.
How do I cancel my class?

To cancel or change your class - You can cancel your class on the SHSC app or website portal by clicking the “profile” tab on the bottom right hand corner and then click the class you wish to cancel on the app “cancel reservation”. You will receive an email confirmation of your class cancellation. A full credit refund is provided when cancelling 8 hours or more before your scheduled class time. If your cancellation is less than 8 hours before your scheduled class time, your credit will be forfeited, however in extreme circumstances you can email admin@sydneyharboursurfclub.com.au for a refund.

Weekly Recurring Direct Debit Memberships

How can I change my Membership type? – If you would like to change your membership by either going up or down through our $25, $45, $65, $75 per week memberships – please email JoJo at admin@sydneyharboursurfclub.com.au. JoJo will need to cancel your current membership prior to commencing your new membership.

What is the minimum time of the Weekly Direct debit memberships? – Any of our weekly direct debit memberships is a minimum of 2 weeks and can be pause or ended at any point by emailing JoJo at admin@sydneyharboursurfclub.com.au

I am not paddling as regularly at the moment– you can cancel your weekly membership by emailing JoJo at admin@sydneyharboursurfclub.com.au and move to 5, 10 or 20 group paddling packs. When you do start paddling more regularly again and wish to return to memberships then we can convert your group paddling packs into your membership payment cycle.

Do my weekly membership credits expire each week? – Yes, at the end of 7 days your credits for that week that are unused will expire and your new week credits will start again.

How do I update my payment details?

On the App you can update your payment details by clicking on the “profile” tab in the bottom right-hand corner and then select the 3 dots in the top right-hand corner by clicking “account details”. Then scroll down the “saved credit card” section and update or add a new card as required.

How do I cancel a Weekly Recurring Direct Debit Membership?

Please email your request to cancel your membership to JoJo admin@sydneyharboursurfclub.com.au

Our Core Values

Equipment set up
For our lessons we use the latest Epic Surf Ski models which has an easy-to-use adjustable foot plate set up for your leg length. The Coach will show you the correct foot plate size for you and there will be a number to remember. Each time you paddle, you can set the foot plate to your number. You can take your drink bottle out with you and your coach will show you where that sits.
Your coach will hand you a paddle and we show you how to set up the paddle length and angle. A guide for avg. height female is 209cm long and for avg. height male 212cm long, with the paddle angle set at 65 degrees offset.

Launching into the water
Launching from the Rose Bay Clubhouse deck into the water -


Push your heels into the heel plate and wiggle your bum into the back of the seat, then sit up tall by lifting your rib cage and slightly tip forward from your hip so your shoulders are in front of your hips. Our chin stays up and eyes looking forward. If you have tight hamstrings or hip flexors this can be initially challenging, however, in time you will develop the paddling muscles to sit up taller.

Body rotation allows you to bring the paddle through the water using your bigger muscle groups, which generates more power and speed. If you don’t rotate your body, you are then paddling with only your arms, and you will travel slower and fatigue quicker.

Your coach will break down the paddling stroke for you in user friendly steps. Body rotation is pulling from your hip, the knee goes down and the pelvis turns 45 degrees. Our shoulders and chest follow this 45-degree pivot while our head remains straight. This body rotation will allow you to use your bigger torso muscles such as your “obliques” and “latissimus dorsi” muscles.


Paddle with the right stroke
Our elite coaches will break down the whole stroke for you in our Level 1 – Learn to Paddle Classes.

Here is how to paddle with the right stroke:



Transfer of weight from one stroke to the other effectively gives you better stability. In body rotation we pull from the hip and turn the pelvis 45 degrees, at this point it is important to sit down on our glute muscle and hold our body weight there. When we stroke on the other side we pull from the hip and place our weight onto the opposite glute. Your Coach is there to show you how to effectively transfer your weight from one glute to the other, allowing you to control the surf ski and cause less drag.

Use the Big Muscle Groups

It is easy to think that if I use my arms to paddle, I will go fast, however, surf ski paddling is a torso rotational sport just like golf or tennis. Surf ski paddling requires you to use your big muscle groups such as your quadriceps, obliques, and lats to paddle faster.


Blade Entry and Blade Exit

Our paddle is the most important piece of equipment, getting the blade into the water correctly, creates boat lift and forward propulsion for a faster more efficient travelling surf ski.


How to Remount back into your surf ski
Knowing how to get back onto your surf ski quickly and efficiently is very important. Watch our easy to do video and make sure you keep practising.


Information on what’s happening at Sydney Harbour Surf Club each week?
We have a SHSC WhatsApp chat where we send weekly information on what’s happening at the club. Beautiful morning sunrise pics and any paddle trips, clinics or social drinks nights coming up. After your first 30 days of paddling, we will add you to this chat, however, if you would like to be added earlier, please msg Luke Horder 0405 444 311.
What if I have further questions?

For any other questions, please email us at admin@sydneyharboursurfclub.com.au