Take the time to take your board into head deep water, even a pool.
Work on leading the board around to get your feet in your straps. When you can do that, try it with one arm up over you head. You will find that you can do it in one direction, but it is harder in the other direction. Once you have your feet in the straps, try moving the board around with you feet to position a take off. Do this until you feel comfortable.
Now try it with a kite!
thank you so much for your tips! this is incredibly helpful and will be useful to me and everybody who comes later.
I have been in Thailand for a few days now. only had one day of decent wind so far.
I can ride (without ridding for 10-15 sec) after that the board tends to go up and I fall -:)
but slowly I will get there. two more days of training left. I will write a report of what I learned after I get back. but I must say this has been so far a very humbling experience!!
Randahl wrote:If your technique ends up working, by all means share it. Loscocco's video looks pretty typical of the first 1-4 sessions, at least for me it was. I have seen a couple of guys "get it" on their first session but they were seasoned race guys. Of all the riding disciplines, I think coming from a twin-tip riding background might be the hardest.
Yes! I have succeeded. On the 3rd day, I was able to foil pretty much most of the tack in both directions. I am still very concious of the board and must look down at it to keep level. I guess it will take some time to get really relaxed. But I am thrilled to be able to foil thanks to valuable advise I got here and also at the beach from a local foiler.
Thank you all for help and tips!
My prep work (secret weapon) was definitely very useful as I think I skipped the part of learning to keep balance while up on the foil. I still fell a lot, but the feeling being UP and ridding on a wing is very similar to balancing on a "pivot" board in my apartment. I will post a video of Pivot Board exercise later when I am back home.
I am heading home in the afternoon today. Here is a video of my trip and it has a few seconds of me foiling I am hooked!
I used "Pivot Board" to learn balancing before I went into the water. This home based exercise that I believe helps greatly shorten the learning curve on the water.
You can experience and learn the balancing skill needed to foil in the comfort of your own home.
It will not help with the initial steps of learning to keep the board in the water, but once you are getting the foil out of the water, you will be almost there ready to foil if you do this before hand.
At least this was my experience.
Here is a short video I put up to demonstrate the exercise:
The learning process does start in a fairly brutal way and a helmet and impact vest are recommended.
I went to Tarifa for two weeks and set myself a goal of doing 1-2 hrs hydrofoiling each day. To start, it was back to the start for the first hour, but the improvements came in the second hour. I found my thighs were getting heavily bruised from sideways falls off the foil and I bought some North ION cycle cross impact shorts which really helped.
On the second week, the progress came - still only achieving about 50% of surface gybes, tried foiling gybes (with no success) & can jump, just not land - will keep trying. I was surprised how many fish can be seen from the foil (some looked larger than I would have liked) and I did hit something tht didnt feel like seaweed! Anyway, the video below was shot handheld on the last day: https://vimeo.com/101960223
Thanks to the advice here on kiteforum i got up and foiling on a borrowed MHL Lift on my second day, even managed to ride back downwind. The main points are to have a kite 2 to 3m less than for a TT and steady wind. I also read here that it is important to press down with your front foot and keep the board on the water as you build speed and then let the foil slowly come up, that was the key for me. If you are going too slow and let the foil come up then you will crash back down. I also found it helpful to keep the kite pretty low and ride with the back hand only on the bar and use the front hand to help balance. Anyway, what an awesome new sport!