Custom First Aid Kits Launched for Travelling Surfers

Via Media Release

Manly, New South Wales, Australia– A start-up Australian company Better Surf Marketplace has combined a wealth of surfing, travel and medical knowledge to release custom first aid kits for travelling surfers and outdoors people.

The Calm As line of first aid kits (FAK’s) were developed by a collective of surfing doctors with experience of traveling off the beaten track, as well as of hard-core hospital emergency wards, who recognized a need for compact yet vital First Aid Kits for travelers.

Better Surf Marketplace (BSM) Founder Dr Jon Cohen and Senior Medical Advisor Dr Phil Chapman are two surfers who have been doing remote medical work in destinations like Grajagan and Tavarua as part of the Surfing Doctors ( organization, and realized that the majority of traveling surfers are dangerously under-equipped when it came to medical kits and knowledge. They also recognized that there is a need for various versions of such a medical kit.

“So many surfers head out to fairly remote destinations with little or no medical supplies,” said Dr Cohen. “It’s pretty common to injure yourself in a place like Indonesia, where the waves are powerful, and most of them break over shallow coral. To be surfing at a remote surf spot like Grajagan, off the jungles of Java, or in the Mentawais, one hundred kilometers off the mainland of Sumatra, and not have a good medical First Aid Kit on hand places you at serious risk. At these remote, paradise surfing locations it can take ages to organise a medical evacuation even if you’re travelling with insurance.

Some injuries need to be dealt with immediately to get the best outcome for the injured surfer. Whether it is something super common like a fin chop, nasty run in with the reef causing a fracture or dislocation, or even something super rare like a shark bite, the delay in applying basic first aid before transfer out to a decent hospital can have big downstream impacts on the surfer’s outcome.

“On a more basic, non-life threatening level, being able to sort out your own basic injuries means you’re back in the water faster, wasting less of your precious days in paradise.”

Surfing Doctor, Phil Chapman.

Identifying the need for various bespoke First Aid and Resuscitation Kits according to individual pursuits, Dr Cohen and his team have developed a number of versions, each with unique medical supplies within.

After more than a year in development, testing and checking, the initial surfing Calm As first aid kits were launched earlier month. The first launch was the surfing overland Bali bag as a joint venture with Surfers Of Bali.

The surfer kits will contain medical supplies and tools to help surfers deal with shark bites, snakebites, sprains and dislocations, urchins and splinters, reef rash, allergies, fin chops, sun stroke, diarrhea and vomiting and fever, as well as sea ulcers. It comes with an eBook explaining how to sort out the most common injuries you’ll encounter on a tropical surf trip that you can print out or access on your phone should the user need assistance, and will be retailing for AU$50.

Thereafter BSM will be rolling out following versions of the initial kit:

A Deep Sh*t mod that you can add straight into the Surfers of Bali model.

A Big Wave Kit designed to fit on the rescue ski and have everything needed to initiate resuscitation in heavy situations like drowning, spinal injuries and pelvic fractures.

Surfing Doctors Special Kit that’s similar to the Surfers of Bali kit, being able to fit in your board coffin without scratching up your boards, but have more specialised tools and drugs that medical professionals like the Surfing Doctor crew are comfortable using.

The 4WD kit will cover all the incidences that could occur while beach camping with the family for a week.

“’Relax, assess, react’ is the key phrase that I have used in emergency medical situations, and it can be used in surfing as well,” said BSM Medical Advisor and Surfing Doctors founder Dr Phil Chapman.

The reason behind the name ‘Calm As’ for the first aid kits is to possibly have a calming effect on whoever is using it. Sometimes if people are not qualified or dialed-in, they tend to panic in heavy situations, when they really need to relax and remain calm.”

Manufacturers description:

A collaboration between the Surfers of Bali and Calm As First Aid and Resuscitation Kits. Specifically designed for surfers to be able to throw into their board bag and forget about until needed. Comes in an “esky” backpack bag with water resistant interior lining and some thermal protection. Inside you’ll find the items packed into 6 resealable plastic bags, each labelled with the condition the bag’s intended to treat and it’s contents. Includes hospital-grade medical equipment from Australian suppliers:

  • 10 alco wipes
  • 10 packs of gauze
  • 10 non-sterile emergency nitrile gloves
  • 5 x betadine wipes
  • 5 x30mL packs of sterile saline for wound irrigation
  • Sterile scissors
  • Sterile tissue forceps
  • 2 sterile packs of small wound closure strips (“steristrips”)
  • 2 sterile packs of extra large wound closure strips
  • 2 sterile 10mL syringes
  • 2 sterile 18G blunt needles
  • Sterile cotton applicators (“Q-tips”)
  • Triangular bandage (“Shoulder sling”)
  • 1.5m of flat-packed 3.75cm strapping tape
  • 50cm x10cm sheet of breathable fabric wound dressing (“fixomul”)
  • 2x medium water-proof transparent wound dressings (6x7cm)
  • 2x large water-proof transparent wound dressings (10x12cm)
  • 2x medium combines with waterproof backing (10x20cm)
  • 2x large combines with waterproof backing (20x20cm)
  • 2x tongue depressors (“finger splints”)
  • 5x fabric bandaids
  • 25g tube of Burnaid gel
  • Aeroform Snakebite bandage (doubles as a “tensor bandage”)

For more information and further products available go to

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