The winter surf season in Puerto Rico is something special, but this December it’s not the only reason to touchdown on the Caribbean island. From December 6-10 the Blue Health Global Surf Therapy Conference 2023 is coming to Aguadilla. With an agenda stacked with speakers, seminars, workshops, move screenings and more, for anyone keenly interested in making the world a better place through surfing, there’s a lot to dive into.
Put together by the International Surf Therapy Organization, the practice of using the ocean and wave-riding to address mental and physical health continues to gain a foot hold as it continues to be applied in new and interesting ways. The group’s stated mission is “to advance the research, develop practices, and advocate for Surf Therapy to improve worldwide mental health.”
Everyday of the conference in Puerto Rico gives space to a number of speakers focused on a myriad of surf therapy applications. It kicks off on Wednesday, December 6, with a talk from International Surf Therapy CEO Kris Primacio. It then goes into presentations from Gnome Surf Therapy, who will share their “The Octopus Approach,” and Jess Ripley, the owner of Sea Love Healing.
As the week goes on there are talks from Project Stoke and how they’re addressing chronic pain issues. The always inspiring Chris Dennis will breakdown the work he’s doing in Trinidad through his Waves Of Hope organization. Meanwhile, MeWater founder Eddie Donnellan will be sharing his experiences bridging the gap between non-profits and brands. There is also a special screening of the new film “Wade in the Water: A Journey into Black Surfing and Aquatic Culture,” which addresses racial barriers in surfing.