Meet Jorge, our Spanish and surf holiday instructor in Fuerteventura, Spain
Jorge founded his surf and Spanish school in Fuerteventura in the hopes of getting students out of the classroom and having fun while still learning the Spanish language. He decided to combine his love of surfing with his knowledge of Spanish and do just that.
He shared some inside tips on language and surfing, as well as what it’s like to join him in paradise (aka Fuerteventura) on holiday:
What made you decide to set up a surf school?
Since I was a child, I have always been connected with the ocean, I am definitely addicted to Vitamin Sea!
I was born in a mid-size town along the Mediterranean coast, named Cartagena, close to Alicante. I have previously lived in plenty of coastal places throughout my life like: Cartagena, Cádiz, Coruña, Canarias – I just can’t take myself away from the sea!
When I was a teenager, my parents and I moved into Madrid. When we moved before, I’d always gotten used to being in a new place. But when we moved to Madrid it was different. Being in a big city, the rushed lifestyle and the total absence of the sea was too much for me to cope with!
I finished my studies and spent almost 15 years in a traditional, professional career, the last 3 years of which I was seriously unhappy.
I spoke to friends and family and finally made a life changing decision: I decided to change everything I knew and took control of my life again.
I quit my job at an investment banking firm and, after a break, found myself moving to Fuerteventura!
In Fuerteventura I “connected the dots” and set up my Spanish and surf school. I was hugely motivated to make this work and knew that it just couldn’t fail! I’ve now been here for 6 years and all I can say is: “Gracias a la Vida!” (Thanks to life).
What makes your school stand out from other language schools?
We know students work hard throughout the whole year, why should they give up a well deserved holiday to only study Spanish?
We want our students to make the most of their vacation, which is why we also combine Spanish courses with guided water sport activities such as surfing, kiteboarding and SUP. This combination of having fun & learning makes the experience of our students outstanding!
We believe it’s always possible to have fun whilst learning and this is precisely what we aim to do. Our school offers high standards of Spanish teaching in a heavenly place (the island of Fuerteventura). This means that both students and teachers are inspired and motivated.
How many lessons do students have / how many hours a day?
We always teach in small groups according to level of Spanish or surfing. A regular day’s programme in the life of a student is going surfing with the school in the morning from 10am to 2pm.
We then take a 3 hour break from 2pm-5pm. This time’s used mainly chilling out and resting after lunch and a busy morning surfing.
Afterwards, from 5-7pm, our students join our Spanish group courses. Usually students hang out together in the evening, they go out for dinner or cook at Casa Carmen, our student house with ocean views!
Even though our students are on vacation, the agenda can be demanding. For this reason we make everything really easy for our students. The surf instructor picks you up from Casa Carmen and the Spanish courses take place just a few minutes’ walk away from the student’s accommodation.
What’s your top tip for someone learning Spanish?
We often come across students asking us the same question: “how much time do I need to put myself through in Spanish?” The answer is simple, it depends. There are many factors affecting the learning process. However, there is an underlying factor that stands out above the rest: motivation!
What’s your best tip for someone who’s learning to surf?
Surfing is a lot of fun but also very demanding. Sometimes people get frustrated as soon as they realize it’s not as straightforward as they had thought.
However, the key point is having fun! If you get nice waves, the better, if not, just enjoy the fact that you’re in a beautiful environment: the ocean, the breeze of the sea, the rays of sun…
With the right attitude and a suitable surfboard, you’ll soon improve. Be careful though, it’s addictive!
We recommend that anyone who hasn’t surfed before uses a longboard first. Usually amateur surfers try and switch to the short boards too quickly, which sometimes provokes frustration.
What’s your accommodation like?
Casa Carmen is our beautiful Canarian style villa overlooking the ocean! It’s used exclusively by our students and from the moment you step into the house you’ll feel at home.
The surroundings are amazing, from its backyard wooden-deck you will be able to enjoy magical sunsets over the ocean.
The villa is fully equipped and it’s decorated in a cosy and fresh way. We have put a lot of dedication and heart into it. If you’re an open minded kind of person, willing to live new experiences and enrich yourself in an international environment, then Casa Carmen (and Fuerteventura) is the place to be!