Update Summer 2019


Obviously regular blogging is not my strong suit. There are some solid posts in this archive for sure, but keeping a schedule with the blog has simply fallen by the wayside. This post is an attempt at some housekeeping and just to get some fresh content on the blog roll. Can’t promise more regular posts, but I do aspire!

As those who sign up for the newsletter can attest, things have changed in that regard! I’m doing 4 fancier newsletters a year, and weekly surf report emails via the newsletter feed. All you have to do is sign up for the newsletter below. People who are currently training with us in packages get more frequent emails about changes to weather and swell and priority booking.

Summer 2019 has been a total blast so far. We’ve moved most NY operations to Rockaway since we acquired T. Rock the amazing rat terrier chihuahua in October. T. Rock is a rescue. 7 years old. We’re his third home. He is a spunky little guy and will not be going back to the shelter. Although he’s technically not allowed at the beach at all, they are far less aggressive in Rockaway than they are in Long Beach. We don’t bring him to the beach every day, and he’s never there on weekends, but it’s nice to have the option. On weekdays we often smuggle him past beach regulation hours by having him nap on whomever is filming’s lap.

T. Rock hard at work on my lap.

T. Rock hard at work on my lap.

On non T. Rock days in the fall — after they stop charging $15 a head to get on the beach — we may inspect Long Beach again. Little birds have chirped that the sand bars are good there. I must say, however, the water has been looking more filthy there than Rockaway. More reports on that in newsletters. Until then, as long as the wind is N, NE, NNE, NW, WNW, NNW at any speed or E, ENE, ESE, SE, S, SSW, WSW, or W under 10 mph we’ll be in Rockaway. When the winds are from the SW, W, or WSW above 10 mph and there is consistent swell, we’ll head to NJ. All exact locations are determined upon morning surf check. We head to the general vicinity we plan to coach, then make the call on exact spot after we’ve had eyes on it.

Surf forecasting has improved with technology but nothing beats actually getting your eyes on it. Swell, wind, and sands can all shift and interact in ways that we cannot predict until we see it for ourselves. It is rather crazy how the smallest change in direction can make one stretch of sand turn on and another stretch turn off. As ever, we’re always looking for fun little peaks with the smallest crowd. After 10-11a we’ve been forced to surf Rockaway 67th St since that’s the main surfing beach. When it’s gloomy, however, we have more options, as the lifeguards and green shirts tend to either take gloomy days off or come late.

Making the calls at the beach ensures we find sandbars like this one. Juan on a mini summer runner.

Making the calls at the beach ensures we find sandbars like this one. Juan on a mini summer runner.

We have some retreats planned for 2019 and 2020, so you’ll want to get at us asap to book your spot. We’re going back to Portugal in December, CA in November and January, and Costa Rica in March, April, and May. I’ve said it before, and it bears repeating, retreats are the best way to fast track your surfing. Oh and head’s up the annual CSC camping trip to Rhode Island is September 14 and 15. There are still a few spots available.

The CSC boards we get through Mike Siordia and Jose Barahona in LA are beyond sick. A bunch of people are ordering boards this summer and there’s no reason for this trend not to continue. I love all the surf shops out here but no one is making or stocking long boards, hybrids, and mini longboards as sick as ours. I ride and feel a lot of boards, and these ones just have everything you need — float, rocker, hard rails, correct concave, and perfect fin set ups. To get one started simply email me. They run $800-$1200 depending on size, color, and glass work.

Tasha and JP holding CSC Aedequatio modern longboards in 9’ and 8’6”. These boards are the shit!

Tasha and JP holding CSC Aedequatio modern longboards in 9’ and 8’6”. These boards are the shit!

I will do my best to update this more frequently. Writing and analysis are keys to success in this life. In fact I am planning to compile all the advices and analyses I have offered in my session notes into a Conatus Surfing Philosophy book. If anyone has an agent for me, send her/him my way! I’d love to offer a comprehensive view of my philosophy of surfing so that more people than just those who take coaching with me can benefit.

On that note, I may be giving a lecture in the fall at a location tbd. It will be a version of the talk I gave in San Diego at the Philosurfer Convergence this past June. I tried to film my talk but my camera shut off at the 23 min mark. You can view the start of it below. I was just working out the rough ideas and after this first foray have a better sense of how to organize and present the material.

While you’re on our Vimeo Channel , check out all the rad action that has gone down this summer! There are a number of coach vids to check for proper form and tons of student vids for you to relate to and take from. It’s super beneficial to see people struggle and succeed. It gives you perspective on your own practice. Also there’s a bonus vid from the Convergence of famous surf author Jamie Brisick talking about his forthcoming memoir. Jamie has had an interesting life and it’s great to hear him discuss its high and low points.

Until next time, keep following and liking us on Instagram! We totally dig your support over there. Sign up for the newsletter. Buy a package to take your surfing to the next level. Check back here to see if I’ve made any headway on more regular posting. Leaving you with some fun images from this summer below!

The robot that saved my relationship

Hey ocean lovers,

Some real talk. I love Dion, and I love the ocean, but I do NOT love the sandpiles these two create when they get together. Sand gets EVERYWHERE--the sheets, the socks, the sink... Seriously, despite Juan's good-hearted sweeping, and Dion's foot rinsing, there have been a few moments where I didn't know if my relationship could survive the small quartz particles in the bed.

Enter the Eufy Robovac. I know, I know... I too thought that robot vacuum cleaners were prohibitively expensive, but this little guy came in at under $200 on Amazon. You program him/her to run at the same time every day, and voilà... clean floors and no more sand fights! We've named ours "RV" (for Robo-Vac). As Dion says, "it's like a pet, but it cleans up the dirt instead of making it."

In case you're wondering if it works, photo evidence is attached below... and this is after just one day. New York is gross, people, but RV sucks it up.

This is what ends up on the floor in just one day of NYC apartment life.

This is what ends up on the floor in just one day of NYC apartment life.

RV is rechargeable, uses a sensor to get around your whole apartment, and has a couple different programs you can run. I've got him set to do a full-house sweep every day at 11am. Head out for work in the morning, come home at night to clean floors. There's no bag to replace, just a cute little removable dustbin that you empty right into the trash.

If you or someone you love loves the ocean, and can't help bring her home on your feet and in your pant legs, I can't recommend this little guy enough. Go forth and be tidy!

love, sophia


Sophia in the city

Hey everybody, Sophia here--as many of you know, I'm back in BK for the summer, after another successful writing season up in Cape Cod. I'm loving the New York vibes more than ever. The street culture, the beautiful people, the languages, the food, the fierce personalities... and of course, the vitality and good neighborliness of the city and its diverse inhabitants. NYers are uniquely good at standing up for our fellow humans. We take no shit, people.


Behind every good surf coach...


As you may be aware, from time to time I exert the occasional behind-the-scenes influence here at Conatus, helping Dion with scheduling (the ocean is on her own time), budgets (eeew), food snacks (yum), and other Virgo projects. One of the things I'm excited about this summer is taking on some more leadership with this good old blog. So watch out for more regular posts--with new lifestyle features, recipes, tips n tricks, as well as the usual student updates and success photos, and Dion's picks for surf gear, books, movies, and events.


Stay cool, stay fierce, stay positive, stay out on the streets and in the water. More soon!

love, sophia