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Tips and Techniques - Front Surfing Part.1 (Getting the wave)


This is the first of a four part series. Getting on the wave, is some times the hardest part. One of the mistakes I see boaters make is going for the destination, and not looking at the journey. They give the boat too much angle as they leave the eddie, thinking that they have to get out on the wave all at once.   It is really a series of baby steps.

When we go to get on a wave, we have a tendency to look out at the center of the surf wave, where we want to end up. When we look out this rotates the body and thus rotates the boat also and give us too much angle when we leave the eddy, which then causes us to miss the wave. We should not look at our destination, but at the front of the boat and the water hitting the bow and what currents will hit the boat in the next 6”. We can keep our destination in view, in our peripheral vision. We want to start surfing in the corner of the wave and work out, instead of trying to dart out into the center of the wave all at once.

To practice this, find a moderate wave with a fairly quiet eddy. Start by surfing in the corner where the wave and eddie meet. Then work out 3-4” on to the wave, then 3-4” more, then 3-4” more, etc until you are on the center of the wave. Then slowly work yourself back to the eddie. Keep working this, so that you can position yourself any where on the wave.


Just a note, most of the points made on front surfing in this series also apply to ferries.


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