Great Lakes Surf Lessons

There are few feelings more powerful than that of riding a wave.

Learn to surf on Lake Michigan with the guidance of our passionate, patient, proficient instructors – all who live and breathe Great Lakes surfing.

Book a Group Surf Lesson!

Our Great Lakes surfing lessons begin by squatting in the sand as you learn about the science of how waves form on Great Lakes, safety, surf etiquette, the fundamentals of a pop-up, and techniques for getting in and out of the water.

All students will practice paddling and popping up on your surfboards on shore before getting in the water. Throughout the next hour of the surf lesson, our highly knowledgeable surf instructors will do everything they can to get you smiling, and surfing toward the shore, through a big push, or with the energy of a glorious freshwater wave.

Great Lakes Surf Lesson Offerings:
  • Group Lessons ($60/student) **Most Popular Offering!**
      • Group Lessons operate on Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:00am to 10:30am (1.5 hours in length)
      • Group Lessons are held at the north end of the Empire Public Beach near the lighthouse
      • Group Surf Lessons have an instructor to student ratio of 1:4
  • Semi-Private Lessons ($95/student)
      • Semi-private lessons are intended for 2-4 students
      • Semi-private lessons are 1.5 hours in length
      • All semi private lessons must be scheduled in person or over thephone with an instructor.
      • Semi-Private Lesson location will be determined by forecast
  • Private Lessons ($135)
      • 1:1 Instructor to Student Ratio
      • An opportunity to work directly with an instructor to forecast for your lesson, and advance your skills
      • Private lessons are 1.5 hours in length
      • All private lessons must be scheduled in person or over the phone with an instructor
      • Semi-Private Lesson location will be determined by the forecast

Please Remember!

We can not make waves nor can we change the weather, therefore your lesson may happen on a calm Lake Michigan. Fear not, flat-water lessons give you the perfect opportunity to dial in your your skills before taking on the added challenge of whitewater!

Regardless of the conditions, we can guarantee an epic time as long as you bring some positive energy!

To make sure you are comfortable through the extent of the lesson we do recommend wearing a wetsuit. You may add a wetsuit rental to your lesson reservation for an additional $20.

Book a Group Surf Lesson!


We look forward to getting you on board!
~ Ella & Annabel

Terms & Conditions:

Cancellation Policy:

If you must cancel, you may receive a full refund up to 7 days prior to your scheduled lesson. All cancellations within one week to 24 hours of your scheduled lesson may receive a credit, to reschedule the lesson. No refunds or credits are given for no-shows, or if cancellations occur within 24 hours of your lesson start time. We are doing our best to accommodate all individuals eager to join lessons. : )

We reserve the right to cancel or reschedule the lesson if we feel that the safety of our students is at risk. Surf lessons are canceled by Sleeping Bear Surf only if there is thunder and lightening, extreme water conditions, if our instructors fall sick, or a case of Covid-19 has been confirmed within our team.

What we are asking of you before engaging with us : 

  • Stay at home if you are feeling sick or have been in close contact to someone with Covid-19 within the last 14 days
  • Vow to NOT pee in your wetsuit if you are renting a suit for your lesson. It’s gross.