*Ohana – means family
Stand up paddle boarding may have originated in tropical Hawaiian waters, but it has made a home on Sydney’s harbour with WATSSUP!
Watsons Bay Stand Up Paddling (WATSSUP) is an Academy of Surfing Instructors (ASI) accredited Stand Up Paddle School, located in the heart of the harbour at Watsons Bay (only a 15 minute drive or 20 minute ferry ride) from the Sydney City Centre.
WATSSUP is the brainchild of two water crazy, ocean loving enthusiasts: Bondi Rescue’s Lifeguard Terry McDermott and resident Mermaid Joanna Kyriazakos. Between them, Joanna and Terry have thousands of hours of experience in competing, instructing and coaching in aquatic environments, from flat water to open ocean.
At WATSSUP the ocean is our gymnasium! We strongly believe that stand up paddling is a great way to maintain an active, fit and healthy lifestyle. It is a place to learn new skills, train hard, get fit and also a place to meet like-minded people and have fun!
Terry is a veteran professional lifeguard, surfer, trainer and all round waterman, also well-known for his presence on the famous Australian TV show: Bondi Rescue. Terry’s been stand up paddling since 2006, and he previously established and ran a successful learn to surf school and was the head instructor for over 20 years. Terry was also a surf reporter for 21 years (this man knows the ocean and can forecast weather and swell like one of the pros!) and he is a motivational trainer and speaker. Terry has competed in the Molokai to Oahu Race a number of times on prone paddle boards as well as stand up paddling and was awarded the “Best Waterman” award for his exceptional crossing of the Kauai Channel in 2009.
Joanna, also known as “The Mermaid”, is the owner of the renowned and beloved Mermaid Swim Academy at the infamous Bondi Icebergs. Mermaid Jo has been teaching swimming and open water/surf sports for almost a decade! Since creating the now thriving swim school back in 2006, she has also developed a highly successful Surf Sports Training business; conducting kids camps throughout holiday breaks for all surf awareness, paddle board training and surf swimming skills. Jo is an open water swimmer herself, as well as an accomplished prone and stand up paddler, and has competed in many open ocean swimming events within Australia and overseas. She has also successfully tackled the infamous Molokai to Oahu race in Hawaii a number of times, once taking the crown of First Female Team!
“We love to share our years of knowledge, expertise, love and passion for SUP with each and every person who comes to SUP with us. We aim to inspire and introduce those of you who have never SUPed before to all of the benefits (physical, emotional, spiritual & mental) of the sport. As well as providing experienced SUPers with technique and skill based support, challenging workouts and amazing tours of one of Sydney’s best-kept secret beaches – Watsons Bay and all of its surrounding beauties.” – Joanna and Terry