Meet Tiril Sjåstad Christiansen (24) – freestyle skier, beginner surfer in a relationship with Stian. The couple recently visited our Yoga & Surf Retreat for some valuable couple-time in Portugal. We had a chat with her by the pool about their experiences at the camp and taking a couples vacation to Ericeira.
How do you like being back in Portugal, and how has your stay been so far?
It has only been four days, but I already feel like a new person! The camp staff organise everything for us, so we don’t have to worry about anything ourselves, which is relaxing. We start our days with meditation, yoga and a healthy breakfast before the surf instructors take us to the surf spot of the day. After the surf we indulge in a great lunch at the camp restaurant and chill out into the afternoon.
The camp in Ericeira has been significantly upgraded since your last visit, how do you enjoy the camp-life?
The camp has a great combo of chill-out areas, good food, nice drinks and loads of activities for us to do. We love the skatebowl and has spent a lot of time there, in-between taking many yoga classes.
The best part of camp-life for me is that there are always people hanging out by the pool, the restaurant, the bowl and the workout area which makes it easy to make new friends since everyone, especially since everyone has a common interest in surfing.
Yesterday we went on the vineyard trip and had a great time with some tasty wines, before meeting up with everyone later at the dinner party at the beach. I think it’s great to have such a wide range of options, so there’s always something to do. For privacy and alone-time we’ve really enjoyed the room, as the new double rooms are totally amazing!
Along with you for this trip you’ve brought your boyfriend Stian, how has it been to stay at a surf camp – as a couple?
I would totally recommend couples to try out the camp, yoga and surfing is fun to do as a couple, and it’s great to create memories together trying out new things.
I’m lucky to have a boyfriend with a lot of the same interests as me, but regardless of what you like more, there are many options available at the camp, so even if one half loves surfing more than the other, there are still lots of activities you can do together.
You’ve surfed a few times before, how does it feel to be back in the ocean?
The learning curve is still extremely steep, and it’s super cool to feel my skills are starting to ‘take’. There are not of other activities in my daily life which gives me this sensation.
When we’re at the camp, the body is really getting some well-deserved attention and relaxation, which gives us more time and energy for each other! This week we set a goal of two surf trips per year to maintain our skills, so next time we’ve decided to go to Costa Rica for some tropical waves and Pura Vida 🙂
Do you have any tips for our readers who want to learn how to surf?
Take lessons, ask a lot of questions and absorb everything they tell you! Make sure to join the theory lesson, as it’s super handy to know a little about waves, weather and winds. It really ‘clicked’ for me in many ways after our theory lesson this week. Most of all, be prepared for a lot of trial and error in the beginning and don’t give up! The feeling you get when you make it is just divine!
Taking yoga classes together has also been an enormous help, both for our surfing and the sense of wellbeing. My daily life at home is often stressful, but I find yoga calms me down. As a bonus, I find myself more flexible and more able to take control of my thoughts and increase my focus, so I recommend anyone involved with surfing to try it. It’s also great to do as a couple for a stronger connection.
Any last thoughts you would like to share before you run back into the ocean, about surfing or life in general?
Haha, yeah, don’t think too much, just go for it!