A tandem surfboard for disabled children

October 23, 2015 | Surfing
Tandem surfboard: Cerebra's surf solution for disabled children | Photo: Mark Griffiths

The Cerebra Innovation Centre (CIC) has developed a unique tandem surfboard for physically challenged children.

British charity Cerebra has partnered with Surfability UK and Tonic Surf Therapy to design a longboard equipped with a supportive "bucket" seat that can be controlled by a surf instructor.

The CIC product designers have also produced a surf access vehicle, so that young children with neurological conditions can enjoy the pleasure of riding ocean waves. Both products were successfully tested at Llangennith Beach, in Swansea, by 13-year-old Kai Lewis.

"The first wave he caught was the biggest he has ever caught, and my heart was in my mouth. It was amazing, and it opens up so many options, not just for Kai, but for other children with disabilities," said Leanne Lewis, Kai's mother.

Kai has cerebral palsy following a stroke at the age of one, but he enjoyed the first ride of his life. The tandem surfboard will open new opportunities for kids aged 0-16 years.

"Many disabled surf charities are in existence around the world, but they are all trying to use regular surfing and other beach access equipment to enable disabled children and adults to surf. Some of the products in the portfolio are now being commercialized in partnership with third-party manufacturers under licensing agreements," explains Ross Head, product design manager at CIC.

Discover the complete directory of adaptive surfing organizations.