Duck GYBE Jibe.

Duck Gybe


This is the first planing style gybe you normally learn and the start of your freestyle sailing.

Ducking the sail is all about keeping everything in balance.

The first thing to learn are the hand movements.


The back hand goes as far back as possible. The front hand now passes to as close to the clew as possible. Then the new front hand reaches to the new side of the boom, to the harness lines or as far forward as possible.


The aim is to keep your body still once you have commanded the board into the turn. The rig is kept upright as it changes, the centre of effort staying near the centreline of the board. Keep the movements smooth.


1.) You come over the centreline of the board moving the front hand to the harness lines. The rig is going across and forwards as you move your back hand back.

2.) Command the board and let the rig drive you into the turn, keep low. The back hand is placing the rig forwards as you cross your front hand to the back of the boom.

3.) The hand at the back of the boom is placing the clew on the other side of the board so you can reach forwards on the new side.

4.) Place both hands on the boom and drive the board out of the turn, changing your feet when you are comfortable.

You can change the sail early but some common mistakes can happen.

5.) When the rig only goes forwards and not over towards the wind, you will tend to just let go with the front hand.

6.) The rig will fall away from the wind creating weight. The front hand will not go so far back on the boom.

7.) Due to the clew being high and the weight, you will stand up.You can not reach forwards on the new side, so the new back hand goes on the back of the boom to pull it up.

8.) Your hands will have to walk along the boom bringing the rig back up, making many movements.


This graphic shows that if the rig is in balance, there will be no weight. The rig will be moving and floating all the time. In 2.) both hands can be off the boom for a split second as you go to the back of the boom. In 3.) the clew is very high, so the hand brings it down and back to reach forwards on the new side. Again you can end up with both hands off the boom.


Here you can see that we can be in neutral holding the back of the sail. So in reality the timing of the rig change is not so important, only being in balance.

I have chosen some links of different duck jibes to watch.

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