A few small nuggets of advice can make all the difference to your bodyboarding enjoyment. Whether you’re about to embark on a slab hunting mission to Tahiti or you’re looking to successfully trim a high line for the first time, a few pieces of advice can be super useful. There are a stack of valuable youtube tuition videos here that cover loads of useful tips if you’re interested.
We’ve just completed an epic bodyboard coaching weekend in Newquay, Cornwall, England and coached riders from all walks of life. The group had an age range from 22 to 65, which shows that the sport holds no age boundaries. Our chosen spot served up some perfect 2-foot peaks and we were blessed with spring temperatures.
Sliding out and rail control
Phantom leg, sliding out, losing control. What ever you call it. we’ve all been there at one time or another. A few simple pointers can help you to keep your rail edge engaged on even the steepest wave. The key factors are looking, leaning and lunging in the direction that you want to travel. Use the claw grip on the front corner of the board to really engage your rail with your elbow.
Tripping in fins
We’ve all face planted at one time or another. When wearing fins on your approach to the water, point your toes up to the sky and take big, exaggerated steps to save you tripping. When you get in to the water, from ankle depth you should walk backwards. Slide your feet rather than stepping. Look where you’re going. If you don’t look where you’re going you will generally trip over.
Hitting the lip too late
A sure fire way to guarantee more airtime is to hit the lip the split second that it pitches. As the wave is shaped like a quarter pipe, that is when you want to launch off it. A fraction later and you’ll go through the lip, lose some speed and get less projection. This applies to all lip moves.
Taking hours to paddle out
Long paddle outs are tedious and tiring. There is a useful video here to make it easier. A simple tip is to walk out to chest depth water. Wait for a lull. Then paddle as fast as you can to the line up. After each wave, if you need too, repeat the process. Don’t start paddling in thigh depth water, you’ll only get shattered.
Duck diving with ease
As the wave approaches, increase your paddling speed. The second before the wave hits you, get your weight forward on the board and go in to the press up position. Slide your hands off the corners of your board and slightly down the rail to really sink it. As you get the nose under you should aggressively dip your head under the water while at the same time thrusting your knee in to the tail of the board. As you get under the water, flatten yourself out and kick as hard as you can. Push the board in front of you. A top tip is to really kick hard as you re-surface. Then you’ll escape the power of the wave as it tries to draw you back. Watch this video for further tips.
We covered these tips as well as how to project your rolls with more ‘punch’, how to be the person that gets the best wave each set, how to gain speed to make all moves easier and how to transform your riding style. Bodyboarding isn’t about boot camp training sessions. It’s about getting the most out of the waves in every condition. Our riders left the weekend with a few bodyboarding hacks that will make their sessions better.
Fancy a bodyboard coaching weekend or an international bodyboarding-holiday? Hang out with bodyboarders, talk about bodyboarding, have a good time and take the chance to watch video and photos of yourself in the water. Good times guaranteed.