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Please welcome our newest Ocean Vertical team member!

The month of May always marks exciting changes at Ocean Vertical, it is the start of our
summer adventure season and we are jumping back into the sea for Coasteering, Surfing
and Paddle Boarding lessons as well as welcoming many lovely people to our base at
Hedderwick Hill Stables for Corporate Events in East Lothian, Kids Summer Camps and Team
Away Days.

Most excitingly for 2024, May marks us welcoming our newest team member to Ocean
Vertical, Susie! Susie has come on board as our new Events Co-Ordinator and SUP
Instructor. Being a qualified ASI Stand Up Paddle (SUP) Instructor, Susie will be leading many
of our Level One SUP sessions as well as supporting the development of the events Ocean
Vertical offer within both Community and Corporate spheres.

Susie is a trained Wellbeing Coach, specialising in Blue Health Coaching and Mindfulness. She is passionate about encouraging people to access the outdoors and protect all that nature offers us.

Here at Ocean Vertical we are all incredibly excited about having Susie as part of the team, in her own words, here is her journey so far:

“It all started with a walk for a coffee…….

I took a stroll in the early spring sunshine to get a coffee and find some headspace for the day. Over the last year I had increasingly spent the majority of my time outdoors, finding the comfort of nature a huge pull and crucial part in my recovery.

At the time I was embarking on re-training as a Wellbeing Coach but I knew I wanted to combine this new career with the benefits that the outdoors generously gives us. My personal love of exploring our green and blue spaces was something I was reconnecting with hugely and if it had helped me, why could it not be beneficial for others. However, I was not qualified to lead in the outdoors and felt to do this I wanted to gain further experience and qualifications.

With all this swimming in my head I took a walk and headed to the local Twelve Triangles Café in Stockbridge. As I waited for my coffee I clocked a fantastic image of hikers silhouetted against the winter sun on a snowy ridgeline. ‘Wow’ I thought – the image really resonated with me, what a gift to be able to work outdoors and support others in the process. As I picked up the flyer I noticed the symbol ‘OV’ in the corner and immediately
wanted to know more.

After a bit of research I thought ‘go for it’ – reach out. The passion this team had for the outdoors, their breadth of experience and the theme of wellbeing that ran through their work really appealed to me. If you don’t act, you’ll never know and what’s the harm in asking.

After I reached out explaining my situation and interest in any volunteering or learning opportunities they may have, I was delighted when I soon received a welcoming email back, inviting me to meet with the team. I can honestly say that going for that coffee and sending that email was one of the best things I have done in my life. From this point I started to volunteer and help out with the team, and soon decided to turn my love for blue spaces into becoming a Paddle board Instructor.

One year later I am now sitting here on my first day as Events Coordinator and Seasonal Instructor with Ocean Vertical and I literally could not be happier. I am also now fully qualified as a Wellbeing Coach, specialising in Blue Health Coaching and Mindfulness. Even though the last three years have been challenging, to regain my health and to now be embarking on a career and chapter that is truer to self than ever before, I am incredibly grateful for all that has happened, the good and the grey.

Good health – both physical and mental – is such a gift and if it takes as few sessions doing something new or challenging, someone to guide you in nature or just let loose and have some fun away from the day to day, then reach out because we are here and it’s a great place to be.”

Fidra island east lothian SUP paddle boarding lessons north berwick
Adventure Activities Licensing Authority ASI Accredited School - Stand Up Paddle ASI Academy of Surfing Instructors NCC Promoting Safe Coasteering