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  1. #1
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    How do you twist to go clew first switch stance?

    Being able to really open up the clew is important to avoid back winding when going front side in onshore conditions. At the risk of feeling stupid and knocking things off tables or walls you can grab your regular broom stick and try it in your living room.


    My own finding is that I can hold my hands at a maximum of about 180 degrees to my feet. If that makes sense. I'm old and it's slightly painful.


    The first 45 degrees or so comes from turning my hips. Bending the knees is necessary but the front leg tends to straighten more that the rear. I'm therefore not sure if I can twist that much without loosing pressure on the front foot when riding a wave.


    The rotation in my upper body adds another optimistic 90 degrees measured as the difference in angle between hips and shoulders.


    The remaining 45 degrees comes partly from rotation in shoulder joints and partly from bending one elbow (mast arm, aka old front arm).


    I recommend that people try this out. It can work both as an exercise (do proceed carefully as you can easily overstretch!) and as a training of muscle memory. Plus it increases your feeling for where you can get the most twist at the lowest cost.


    Note that I'm not saying that you'll come anywhere close to your maximum living room twist on the water (although both the strap placements on the board and the shape of the boom affords you some extra degrees). There may be a lot factors with regard to foot steering and power control and what not that'll determine both how and how far you can twist on a wave. But I don't think it'll hurt you trying this. Not unless you overstretch. As an excersise - more than an experiment - it can actually lower the risk of injuries on the water. I once seriously strained a hip on the water and have paid dearly over a very long period of time. I got a strong urge to look like a pro and told my self it's all about guts. It's not.
    Last edited by boards_Tomas; 15th October 2016 at 09:25 PM.
    The infamous wavewriter

  2. #2
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    Already counting 76 broken bodies but no replies. Makes sense really.
    Last edited by boards_Tomas; 15th October 2016 at 10:27 PM.
    The infamous wavewriter

  3. #3
    Senior Member Silicon Beach's Avatar
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    This pic of my wife illustrates the position quite well (click to expand). It's taken on the beach in Mauritius with Peter Hart.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I can't get near that amount of twist - in the living room or on the beach, but funnily enough once on the water, on a wave, with some adrenaline in the veins, I seem to do better
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  4. #4
    I can see that you might want to practice stuff on dry land and on windless days – but I don't do that.

    It's bit like the Home Guard in 'Dad's Army' practising marching but with broom handles and pitch forks on their shoulders because they haven't got rifles. When faced with the enemy, in battle, how will a broom handle help?


    So the only way to understand wave sailing and to get better at it is to do it.
    Great gybing technique must come first and that can be practised on flat water days. Get your foot positioning perfect and learn to use the rig to tighten the turn.
    Clew first sailing can also be practised on flat days, for better rig control.
    But the real practice comes from putting in time on the wave face, where you then learn to keep driving control over your board whilst simply using the rig to optimum effect with the apparent wind you create.

    When wave riding, the clew first position is often just momentary, because the apparent wind direction changes your board slows at the top of a turn. But maybe you can practice better stance by sailing along a wave face trying to hold the clew first position longer.
    Main boards: Flare 101, NuEvo 86, UltraKode 80, Reactor 82, NuEvo 73. Powered by Severne Blades and S1s.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silicon Beach View Post
    This pic of my wife illustrates the position quite well (click to expand). It's taken on the beach in Mauritius with Peter Hart.

    Click image for larger version. 

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Size:	97.6 KB 
ID:	14573

    I can't get near that amount of twist - in the living room or on the beach, but funnily enough once on the water, on a wave, with some adrenaline in the veins, I seem to do better
    Thanks for posting SB! Your wife also illustrates the mast rearwards clew high thing well. And it would tip even further back if she had moved her mast hand closer to the lines.

    I've started collecting pictures of pros exposing similar positions on waves. The collection includes Allessio, Daida and Alex Mussolini. But not Basher yet.

    An additional reason for practising getting into this position is that in very onshore conditions it should often happen within a second of dropping in. The pictures Levi Silver & Co doing long fast lay down style bottom turns can feed our dreams and help the industry sell wave gear. But they don't teach us much about real world wave riding.
    The infamous wavewriter

  6. #6
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    In case anone should wonder I've already ditched the broom stick. Instead I've started practising the whole movement with a manual in each hand. It goes like this. I drop down in my knees and push out and down with my mast hand while pulling in and lifting with my boom hand. This is supposed to mirror the movements you make to get the board on it's rail for a bottom turn. Next I reverse the arm movements while twisting my hips and torso and rotating my shoulder joints. The boom arm pushes out but also upwards to lift the clew and tilt the mast to the rear while the mast hand pulls in and down.

    I also found it interesting to observe that when I "change tack" I tend to become uncertain which way to twist. To me that indicates that this is good exercise for muscle memory as well as for flexibility and strength.
    Last edited by boards_Tomas; 20th October 2016 at 04:08 PM.
    The infamous wavewriter

  7. #7
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    I've been thinking that since when trying to twist your hips (relative to feet) you'll tend to straighten your front leg and lose pressure on the front foot, one should look for other (or additional) ways to gain those extra degrees needed to smack a truly onshore wave. Through experimentation I've found that I can rotate my shoulders more than I thought I could. I suggest that others try this out. Keep the arms straight(ish) and rotate the rig out of the turn and sort of behind your back as you go up the wave for the top turn. It works! It's a pretty rare movement for a civilised person so I guess success can improve with training. Resist the urge to bend the mast arm until you really need or ought to.
    Last edited by boards_Tomas; 20th April 2017 at 09:19 PM.
    The infamous wavewriter

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