Following a glittering career on the world professional surfing circuit, Micheal ‘Munga’ Barry with his wife Krista opened their surf school, Godfathers of the Ocean in April 2000.
Micheal took up surfing when he was 13 winning a junior pro title in 1989 after which he turned professional. During the next decade Micheal won several World Surfing Tour events and was ranked 13th in the world on the ASP tour.
But it is Burleigh Heads that has been lucky enough to benefit from his experience and you can discover why by booking a lesson through your Burleigh Heads accommodation. The Godfathers of the Ocean is one of the most respected surf schools in Australia, with an enviable record of countless people standing up and surfing the waves after just one lesson.
“After retiring at the end of 2000, I became head coach for Billabong which was really great,” says Michael. “I love inspiring and helping others to learn or advance their surfing skills. I’m now a Level 4 Master Coach so the surf school is a great way for me to do what I do best – teach and surf!
“Plus Krista and I feel really lucky to have founded such a successful school on the Coast as this is where we both grew up and our family and friends are here.”
So why Burleigh Heads?
“Well, really Burleigh Heads is the central area of the Gold Coast and has one of the best waves in the world. Burleigh has good sand beach breaks, which are fantastic to learn on and progress. Plus, Burleigh is one of my favourite waves so I just love it here! And it’s such a family-friendly area.”
The Godfathers of the Ocean surf school is unique in that the coaches use a ‘hands on’ approach and are in the water at all times, ensuring absolute safety whilst encouraging and cheering participants on. The aim is to get everyone up and feeling the fabulous thrill of riding their first wave.
Lessons include surf safety awareness education, sun safety, surfing skills, fitness coaching and FUN!
“We’ve had people from all walks of life take our surf lessons, international, interstate and locals, old and young. Whatever the reason or occasion, group, private, corporate, birthdays, training or fitness we are proud to report that people tell us our lessons are the ‘best experience’ and ‘absolute fun’.”
Both Michael and Krista have a vision that the Godfathers of the Ocean in the future will become a main Gold Coast attraction and ‘must-do’ experience.
“I’ve been lucky enough to experience the wonderful sensation of riding a wave and want to pass this on to as many people as possible. Surfing is such an awesome adventure which I love to share.”