Six years ago an Irishwoman surfed off the coast of Iran, a site which shocked and bemused locals. Easkey Britton obviously made an impression with Iran today becoming the 100th member of the International Surfing Association (ISA) federation.
Britton visit to Iran in 2010 inspired a surf movement on Iran's Baluchestan coast with local women taking up the sport in fully covered hijabs.
Britton soon returned to the country to spread the word of surfing's values and share the sport with others and since then the sport has continued to grow and develop with the Iran Surfing Association formed earlier this year.
"Witnessing the birth and rapid emergence of Surfing in Iran has shown me how the sport can be a unique lens to facilitate a deeper understanding of the world around us and each other," Britton said.
"Ultimately, it can be developed to create a space and opportunity for connection across cultures and a positive relationship with the marine environment. A grass-roots surf community has now grown into a nationally recognized sport with the establishment of the Iran Surfing Association and ISA membership highlights the power of Surfing to connect communities across borders."
The Iran Surfing Association has set out five key objectives to aid the growth of the sport in the country including the launch of a national surfing competition and the introduction of educational courses and workshops to train instructors and judges.