Tuesday, August 25, 2009
I got my new JP Freestyle board and Speed board yesterday, so couldn't wait to get out and try them. Luckily when I got to the beach, it was perfect for the freestyle board with small swell and cross-shore.
The main difference from last years board is the shape of the deck, and also that the board carves so much better. I think they have reduced the tail width and given slightly more tail rocker or vee, while sharpening up the rails and flatting out the mid section for speed. The shape of the deck makes it SO much easier to transfer your weight from heel to toes, so combining this with the tail shape makes carving into a pop for shaka, or even just gybing in choppy water so much easier. The shape of the deck too means that when you are in the straps, it feels like you are wearing a pair of shoes. SO comfortable :)
I'm looking now for a gale to go and try the speed board ! Its tiny !
Anyway, the point of this post... as I got my new FS board, I was able to deliver my old one to Ryan - a 15 year old windsurfer who is getting into a bit of waves and freestyle. He was waiting at Dollymount beach with his friend and sailing buddy Lewis. The two of them usually sail together at their home spot of burrow beach, which I mentioned quite a few times in this blog.
Ryan was super keen to try his new board (FS Pro 90), and had been telling me that he had tried a forward loop the previous week but got nowhere and needed help. So I started chasing him around and looping all over the place to try and inspire him to go for it. Sure enough it worked, and he pulled the trigger and went straight over the front, landing under the sail (the safest place to be).
A few top-tips later on technique, and there was no stopping him. Practically every run out, Ryan was flying through the air, and then blasting back in screaming because he was so buzzed up with joy. Sure enough, a couple of quick tips later, and he water-started away from one !
Now here's the impressive bit... next week will be Ryan's 1st anniversary of when he started windsurfing !! Sailing away from your first forward loop after 1 year... that is seriously impressive !! CONGRATULATIONS RYAN !!
I really enjoy getting a buzz from teaching loops like this. It's brilliant to see people break the fear barrier, and just get on with it. Once they get over that hurdle, they are always SO surprised to find out how easy it is to do... and the elation on their face says it all. Sweet!
Its interesting to see how teaching a 15 year old is so much easier, as they have not had the time to come up with excuses not to do it, or have no fear or bad habits.
When it comes to forward loops, the technique can take 10-15 minutes to master, but learning how to avoid all the fear and negative thoughts, and then focus on all the positives of why you CAN do it. With some people that can take longer.
But the end result is always the same... it IS possible & it IS easy.
See you on the beach!
ps - Ryan and Lewis's blog is here.
Posted by Oisín van Gelderen at 7:36 am