I wasn't sure I would even be able to stand up by the end of my first ever surfing lesson. With Black Dog, not only did I stand up but I rode numerous waves and was even paddling into a few myself by the end (for the record, I am not a coordinated person!). All of this in a very friendly and supportive environment (thanks to Dominic, our instructor) with good equipment and a sensible balance of instruction and just getting out there and doing it. The folks in the shop were very friendly too and gave us popcorn at the end of the lesson.
We were lucky with the conditions (sunshine, small and clean break) but I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Black Dog for anybody looking to try out surfing for the first time.
My only small gripe is the $15 they wanted to charge for a DVD of photos at the end of the trip. I feel that if I pay a fair price for the service, they shouldn't try to gouge me with exceedingly high-margin extras at the end.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.