Costa Rica

Science of Surfing


May 22nd - June 2nd 2023


Guanacaste, Costa Rica


Science of Surfing


approx. $3000


  • In country transportation
  • 2 meals a day
  • Accommodations
  • Site visits and course related activities
  • Travel Insurance

Not Included

  • Airfare
  • Extra snacks and some meals
  • Optional Zip Line ($75)

Sean Newcomer


My passion for surfing began at the age of five on the beaches of Cardiff-by-the Sea.  Little did I know then that this passion would someday become the focus of both my Master’s thesis entitled: “Aerobic Capacity of Humboldt County Male Surfers” and my research endeavors as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Kinesiology at California State University San Marcos (CSUSM).  In the past my research at CSUSM has focused on characterizing the physiological requirements of participating in recreational surfing across the lifespan.  In addition, research projects investigating the impact of surf equipment on paddling efficiency, oxygen uptake, heart rate, thermoregulation, and mechanics (in collaboration with Dr. Nessler) are currently underway in our outdoor surf laboratory.  These projects are funded by our collaborators in surf industry and are carried out by undergraduates as part of their Kinesiology curriculum at CSUSM.


Course Objectives:

This unique 12 day study abroad course will provide students the opportunity to gain insight into the sub disciplines of Kinesiology (Exercise Physiology, Biomechanics, Motor Control, Physical Education, Athletic Training, Strength & Conditioning, Sport History, Sport Sociology and Sport Psychology) through the use of examples derived from the sport of surfing.  Specifically, students will learn about research and careers in Kinesiology that are focused on the sport of surfing through daily lectures, readings, class activities, and research projects.  To facilitate the learning process this class will be held in Costa Rica at some of the best beaches for surfing in the world.  Students will be encouraged to spend a portion of everyday surfing to allow them to reflect and apply the content that is presented through the course material.  Surf instructors with local knowledge of the surf conditions and expertise in teaching surfing will be on hand to help those students with little to no surfing experience.  In addition to surfing, students will have opportunities to learn more about Costa Rica and its people through field trips (Guided SUP river tour of Rio Nosara, Zip lining through the rain forest, and Visiting reforestation project site) and community outreach opportunities (Volunteer with Surfing Nosara Foundation and Beach clean ups with local surf guides).