The 8 stage forward

This is only the text version for now as I must do the photos but you can watch the video and photos on the opening page. The forward loop.

The forward loop is the easiest jump to learn, as it is purely technique.

Here are 8 stages to learn the forward loop using the NO FEAR, NO PAIN,NO DAMAGE system.

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All the exercises start with the wind at 90º to the board with everything in an active neutral.


Stage 1. Learning the rig balance and power.

For this stage it is best to use a floaty board and small sail in light winds.

Hand positions. The front hand must be as near to the center of effort of the sail as possible. So right next to the harness line. At this stage the back hand is not important. In fact it does not even need to be on the boom.

Learn to move the sail as far over towards the wind as possible completely in neutral.(no power) Do this movement over and over, it must be smooth and fluid. Notice as you do this movement your hips and shoulders move to face the front of the board.

Now place the back hand on the boom as far back as possible and do the same exercise, making sure the sail has no power. The back hand should be right in front of your face, when the rig is far enough over. Again practice this a lot as it must go over with no power, you do not want the board to turn yet.

Time to engage the power.

This is done by keeping the back hand where it is and moving your front hand forwards(the mast is going forwards) until you feel pull in your front hand.

Now resist the power and watch the nose of the board turn. Hence you are doing a gybe.

The key point is that the board must turn fast. If you sink the tail of the board the board will turn faster, Pivot/slam gybe.

At this stage you can do a gybe as the important thing is getting that sudden pull at the beginning.

In fact if you get the movement correct the board will turn so fast, it will turn 90º and you will fall softly into the water.



Stage 2. In the straps and to find the timing.


For this stage you need a board that you can be in the foot straps in light winds or going slowly.

Remember there is no jump in this stage and you want to be moving slowly.

The first part of stage 2 is to do the same exercise as in 1 but in the straps. Build it up slowly, finding that sudden power in the front hand is the key and the board turning fast.


Now to rotate past 90º.


Timing is the most important thing.

Now we have to simulate the board going off the top of the wave.

As you move the rig across with no power, put weight on your back foot. The tail of the board will sink and the nose of the board will rise. Just before you are going to fall in the water backwards, engage the power in the rig. This will pull you out of the water. when you have the rig far enough over it will also  turn the board.

You can play with this exercise to find out how much or how little you can turn the board.

Practice this until you can get it smooth and one movement.


Stage 3. Starting the true rotation.


For this stage stay with the same board as we do not want speed and there is still no jump.

We are doing the same as in stage 2 but adding some more movements.

Now it is time to not gybe but go in the water.

As you are coming out of the water and the board starts turning, Straighten your front leg and bring your back leg under your back side.

The important thing is to try and keep your body over the center line of the board. The rig is trying to pull you away from the board.

Now we are really looking for that snap from the rig. It is very important not to let your back hand go out, keep the sail sheeted in.

When done correctly you can rotate/pivot all the way around to 180º and more.


Stage 4. Wave timing.


For this stage use the same board.

Still no jumping and you don’t need to be going fast. In fact the slower you are going the better.

You are doing the same exercises as in 1, 2 and 3 but the wave is lifting the nose of the board, so build it up slowly.

The important thing is to get the rig movement to co-inside with the nose of the board going off the top of the wave or chop.

Even at this stage it is possible to get 3/4 rotation.

The further over you get the rig the flatter the rotation. You are aiming to get a completely flat rotation.

This in fact is all you need for the forward loop but the next sections are to guide you through the planing forward.


Stage 5. Introducing a jump.


For this stage the board is not important but it’s advisable to not go to small.

There is no rotation in this stage. The only rotation you do is in your mind.

First step is to get a nice flat jump with your front leg straight and your back foot tucked right up under your back side.

You must learn to get into this position immediately after take off.

We are practicing timing and to unhook smoothly just before the jump.

Learn to control the sail and get lots of float, landing softly.

Keep your body over the centerline of the board.

The other thing you must learn is how high you go off a set wave. It is important to know this as you must initiate the forward rotation at the top or near to the top of the jump if you are going to go high.


Stage 6. Getting the rig movement in neutral on take off.


Here we are going right back to the very first exercise. Moving the rig with only the front hand on the boom.

As the nose of the board goes off the top of the wave move the rig across as fast as you can, then bring it back to the normal jump position.

Make sure you are not going to fast and the wave is not big.

Once you are comfortable with doing it with one hand do the same as in the first stage and place the back hand on. Control is the key point.

This movement will make you pop so it can also be done off a small chop or flat water.

So now we are ready to go for it…………..


Stage 7.  3/4 rotation forward loop.


The first thing you must remember is that we are only aiming for 3/4 rotation not full.

We do not want to go high and we are looking for flat rotation.

Now speed is our friend both with board speed and rig movement.

It is a good idea to only start this section if you are getting around further than 180º in stage 4.

Look for a nice round wave.

Try to take off with the wind at 90º to the board.

If you have enough speed it really is not necessary to do a jump as a fast rig movement will give you enough hight.

When the rotation starts try not to pull in with both arms, keep the front arm straight.

Look for the nose of the board to turn, once it is turning you can look back over you back arm shoulder. It helps to get the rig in the perfect position.

Try to keep your eyes open as you need to know how far you are rotating.

We are looking to land softly on your back/ backside and water start out of it.


Stage 8. Dry.


The last stage should only be done when you are constantly doing 3/4 rotation.

Once you know you are 3/4 round in the air you do the same movement as a water start, to bring yourself back over the board.


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