A Surf Sisterhood

Diva Diaries



Diva Diaries

Once a Salt Water Diva, always a Salt Water Diva! While connecting with the healing powers of the ocean through surfing, Divas overcome fear, adversity and insecurities.  After surfing Divas return to their lives with renewed positive energy, a sense of camaraderie and the overall liberation of spirit. We invite every woman to come join in the fun and to tell us about it!  We want to share your story with other Divas.  Please send us an email and tell us your story so we can post it here or in our newsletter for all to share in those moments of inspiration, laughter, motivation and triumph!


Words from the Members:

Growing up in Santa Barbara you would think that everyone grew up surfing. Not true. I remember all the girls sitting on the beach watching the boys as they surfed. Matter of fact I always had a fear of the waves. Watching all 3 of my sons fearlessly on the surf taking lessons once again I found myself on the beach just watching! When I was invited to a mamas surf lesson, I can’t believe I said Yes. I’m too busy, completely out of shape, 46 is too old to start anything new and I’m scared of the ocean. Well long story short. It was the most amazing and liberating experience ever! I’ve not felt this healthy in 20 years. I want every woman in the world to feel the total confidence and exhilaration that surfing can bring. Being a Salt Water Diva is being a part of a true sisterhood filled with camaraderie and the understanding of true self. I invite each and every one of you to come share the surf with us.

Toyo Yamane-Peluso
Wife, and Mother of 3 sons: Jordan, Nico, Stefano
Founder of Salt Water Divas A Surf Sisterhood


As a Holistic Health Coach, one of the things that I have always encouraged my clients to do is push themselves outside of their comfort zone. This is exactly what I did the first day I surfed with the Salt Water Divas. Afraid of sharks, afraid of waves and the ocean on general, I couldn’t believe, after only weeks after moving from New Hampshire to California, that I was in the water surfing…And loving it! Something else I work with my clients on is not just focusing on what they eat to improve their health, but also feeding their “Primary Foods”, which include work, physical activity, relationships and spirituality. We often feel that we just need to eat well and exercise to be healthy, but we also need to feed our spirit and relationships.  Being in the water and bonding with women through surfing definitely achieves this. I look forward to sharing through our blog, ideas for improving all aspects of health.  From whole foods recipes, to ways of coping with stress, to helping deal with common health issues,  I am very excited to be a part of this amazing community. See you on the beach!

Caroline Powers
Mom of 2 boys, John Henry and Harry

Certified Holistic Health Coach
Salt Water Diva


Dawn Patrol checklist: Get up hellishly early- check. Get to beach while still dark, and paddle out as the sky turns orange- check. Watch as a wave rolls in your direction- check. Paddle hard, paddle hard! Check. Pop up without using knees! Check! Stand up, chin up- check! Listen to instructor as he yells, “More pressure to the front!” CHECK! Ride the wave down the line and listen to your board as it slices through the water- Double CHECK! Big smile-check! Thank your instructor at the end of the session- check (IMPORTANT)! Go home a happy woman-check. Plan to do it again. CHECK, CHECK, CHECK!

Melissa Hopf
Salt Water Diva


“I can see a big difference since I started surfing. It is getting easier to paddle for longer periods and the mobility to go from laying to standing on the board is improving.  Great exercise and so much fun.”
Jackie Carr
Salt Water Diva


Aloha!  Even though my family is from Oahu, no one in my family surfs.  Ever since I was a little girl I had a yearning or calling to learn how to cruise down a wave.  While I took a few half-day lessons throughout my childhood years, it wasn’t until 2008 when I lived in San Diego earning my Masters degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine that I made a commitment to finally learn how to surf.  One day while I was sitting on the beach watching surfers, I had a realization–If I don’t learn how to surf before I moved away from San Diego, I will never forgive myself.  I actively avoid living with regrets, so I got in the water and tried to teach myself how to surf.  Trying to learn without the company of other beginner surfers, and especially other wahine (women), was challenging.  I got discouraged often and didn’t feel “successful” for a longtime.  But there was something undeniably revitalizing and my Spirit always soared after getting out of the water (even when I spent more time tumbling in waves than on my board).  Finally after “dabbling” here and there and allowing my excuses to outweigh my heart’s desires, my commitment grew stronger.  Before I knew it, I was spending more and more time on the board and less time in the water.  On my 30th birthday I was surfing at Pacific Beach pier.  As I sat on my board, I looked up at crowd and remembered a time when I’d be the one looking down at the surfers, dreaming that that would be me one day.  There I was, sitting on my board, realizing I had become my own dream!  Today, surfing is my church and zen-place.  Together, yoga and surfing are the perfect combination.  They allow me to stay connected with Nature and my inner joys while learning how to be strong, flexible, humble and grateful for each day.  I am so honored to be a part of Salt Water Divas community and find lasting friendships that allow fellow Divas across the globe to connect, unite and share our love for the water and surfing.  I wish I had a community like Salt Water Divas when I was first learning how to surf.
J. Haunani Chong Drake, L.Ac., Dipl.O.M.
Salt Water Diva

What Do Women Say About the Salt Water Divas A Surf Sisterhood