Maui Photography of Stand up Paddling – Maria Souza

NicoleMaui Photography

Are you looking for a little excitement and some fun in the sun? Are you looking for something for the kids to do this summer? Then look no further than Maria Souza.

Owner of the Maria Souza Ocean Sports Education LLC here in Maui, Maria teaches the new sport of Stand-up Paddle Boarding. The real treat is that Maria sponsors a once a month free teaching for kids from different programs such as youth centers, Boys and Girls Clubs and others. Her goal is to safely introduce ocean sports, including Stand-up Paddle Boarding to people, especially teens.

The program includes Maria’s teaching the kids about safety, weather assessment, posture, technique, balance and time on the board. Stand-up Paddle Boarding is easier to learn than surfing and is an activity that unites the whole family in the ocean. Maria designates every Sunday for family beach day and is all about fun and family.

The art and sport of Stand-up Paddle Boarding can be done either in the ocean, the river or on lakes, as it is an activity than can be done on flat water as well as in the surf. This sport also offers some tremendous benefits of health to your body. It is a core strengthener, it corrects postural distortions, it uses all muscles in the body, and it uses neuro-muscle coordination, balance and can serve as a de-stressor.

Maria is the first woman and the first Brazilian to tow into the powerful waves at Jaws. Born in Recife, Brazil, she competed in gymnastics until she fell in love with surfing at age 13. Maria traveled the world surfing, and then settled on the North Shore of Oahu, before moving to Maui, to build her big wave surfing skills.

After giving birth to her daughter Bela, she began to train hard again for tow-in surfing.
Maria also excels at kite Surfing and windsurfing and has also become a personal trainer herself. She went to college for marketing and designs her own line of swimwear.

Maria, along with Andrea Moeller, finished first on the first ever stand-up paddle channel crossing in 2005 and first again in 2006, a 7-hour crossing. Maria practices tow-in surfing, foil surfing, windsurfing, kiteboarding, Hawaiian canoe, longboarding, tandem surfing and stand-up paddle.

If you are interested in scheduling club or private family lessons, or just learning Stand-up Paddle Board, other activities that Maria has to offer, or would like to donate equipment or funds towards her free programs for kids, she can be contacted at 808-579-9231 or by email at In addition, if you would like your activity captured on film, you can inform Maria or contact Nicole Sanchez, owner of Behind The Lens Maui at 808-205-2366 or through her website,

Written By: Dwayne Mc Murtrie