Surf Therapy: Not Just for Surf Bums and Beach Goers. How Surfing Can Change the Lives of Young People Experiencing Mental Health Challenges.

Friday 27th May
Session 7
1.40pm – 2.30pm
Room: TBA


Health & Wellbeing Education & Outdoor Learning

Ocean Mind runs theraputic surfing program for young people aged 8 – 18 years with mental health challenges, social isolation and disabilities. The noval use of surfing as a therapeutic intervention has been in Austraia for the last 6 years.

Since inception in 2016, Ocean MInd has been working with Deakin University to understand the effectiveness of surf therapy on young peoples mental health and wellbeing.

In this presentation we’ll explore the elements of therapeutic surfing and the evidence underpinning the programs. We’ll touch on the impact we are seeing in the young people and the community and showcase preliminary results from our RTC research project..

happy person in the Outdoors with tree and mountain landscape in the background

Rachael Parker

Ocean Mind

Rachael Parker the CEO and founder of Ocean Mind, is a Youth Worker with over 10 years experience, an avid surfer and protector and lover of our coastal environments. Rachael’s passion for working in the mental health sector stems from her own lived experience. After completing her Bachelor of Arts (Youth Work) she worked supporting young people experiencing homelessness and those in the youth justice system.
Over the years, Rachael has designed and implemented innovative and evidence-based programs in the youth sector to support young people.

Rachael is passionate about using outdoor environments to create positive experiences and opportunities for young people to thrive. Since discovering surfing in 2015, she’s combined her passion for the ocean and working with young people to create Ocean Mind. Rachael believes there is nothing better than sharing your love for the ocean with young people and teaching them to engage, protect and enjoy the coastal environments.