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The Foil Zone => Foil SUP => Topic started by: matanshapira on June 19, 2021, 10:47:07 AM

Title: Painful injury
Post by: matanshapira on June 19, 2021, 10:47:07 AM
Fell on the front wing(taco, roll fall).

Tried to catch a wave with my SUPfoil. Wave started breaking while I was trying to takeoff to go out of the steep section before it breaks as I always do, kind of an early takeoff that didn't initiate on time. The (small) wave started breaking with white wash and lots of sudden lift, foil breached and rolled before it even started flying and I fell on the front wingtip ass-first!
Luckily it's only an extremely painful very hard bruise.

I'm quite new to SUPfoiling (tons of kitefoiling) but I'm already able to catch waves easily, stay on them for very long(turn,pump) and pump back a few meters

Got me thinking:
1. what's the strategy for avoiding it? taking off early on the top of the wave and ride to the side to escape the high energy of the critical section(whitewater, what I was doing so far but this time got me to a catastrophe) or to drop the wave with a lot of front foot pressure without flying and start flying after the drop ahead of the white wash? abort an early takeoff if it doesn't to succeed by bailing backwards?
Should I avoid whitewater/breaking-section entirely with a SUP as this tumbles the whole setup making me fall uncontrolled and rolls the foil?

2. Apparently I cant anticipate all risks yet or ever. My concern is that such a hit it a different location can be much worse (neck, spine, belly, ribs). Do you recommend some protection apart from helmet such as impact vest?

3. Did you hear about severe injuries from falling on the wings other than cuts from sharp wings?
Title: Re: Painful injury
Post by: Califoilia on June 19, 2021, 03:06:56 PM
From your description, it sounds as though you inadvertently ended up in no-man's-land on the wave....still happens to me occasionally, but the board/foil typically gets launched like a rocket, and I just let it go and bail out the back.

Since I'm on a smaller sup (5'1) that doesn't have much glide, I use a late takeoff where the wave is already starting to pitch over, because I need to get going down the "skateboard ramp" so to speak, in order to pick up speed as quickly as possible to get the higher AR wings I ride to get them flying/lifting, since I can't "ollie" them up like some of my buddies on lower AR wings are able to do.

The other method I'll use, is that when the surf is chest high and up, and I haven't paddled out far enough to do the above, I'll let the wave break, and then start to paddle as it approaches, timing my strokes that I'm able to get one huge hard pull just as the whitewater hits, and stay super low, squatted, with as much weight forward as I'm able to get with a front foot strap (w/o a front strap, you can simple move forward to keep the foil/nose down).

Once I'm in the whitewater, I use that last paddle stroke to keep the blade behind me to act as a rudder/outrigger to help keep and guide me in the direction I want to I ride out the accompanying turbulence as I work to settle the board/foil enough to eventually give it a little hop/pop to break free of the whitewater, and I'm up and way.

But, in the time(s) when I've timed things wrong, and got too deep or late on my takeoff with the whitewater breaking on top of me like what I feel you're when all goes to hell in a hand basket as the crash of the whitewater blows me up and out of the wave...where I immediately hit the "eject" button, pushing the board away from me with my feet, as I bail out the back, and go for the underwater ride as I'm getting drug by my ankle by the leash.

Biggest thing to remember with anything foil related to help avoid injury....."when in doubt, BAIL OUT!!" :o ;D

Get better soon to get back out on the water. 👍🏽
Title: Re: Painful injury
Post by: surfcowboy on June 19, 2021, 05:03:21 PM
Yeah Califoilia nailed it. For my part, Iíve crashed a SUP foil way more than Iíve ridden one.

 My rule is, if Iím straight on the board then all front foot. As much as I can give it. Hammer down. If Iím at all back or off center, bail immediately.
Title: Re: Painful injury
Post by: PonoBill on June 19, 2021, 10:09:23 PM
The most important advice I got when I started foil surfing was a serious talk from Dave Kalama about not trying to save the ride when things go to shit. Bail off the back, and do it early. Trying to regain your balance inevitably leads to a taco, with you as the filling. You need to have this top of mind--if I start to lose it, I won't save it, I'll bail.

An impact vest is a really good idea, and it makes a great place to add a belt (to keep the vest down) that doubles as a leash attachment. Waist leashes are clumsy for the first couple of sessions and then you wonder why you ever used anything else. A helmet is nice too. Some of the best foil surfers I know hit the water padded and protected. But the best protection is to be well behind the board when it goes nuts and tries to stab someone.
Title: Re: Painful injury
Post by: clay on June 20, 2021, 07:32:10 AM
Ouch, hope you heal soon.

Dave nailed it.   He's been surf foiling for 4 years and tried everything, that puts him in the expert category.

Wait a year or 2 or 3 before trying late takeoffs and whitewater  takeoffs.  Those are difficult.  Over time we learn all the things that can go wrong surf foiling and learn how to navigate safely.

All my injuries were from hitting the rail of the board, impact vest saved my ribs.

When in doubt bail out and live to foil another day.
Title: Re: Painful injury
Post by: matanshapira on June 23, 2021, 01:04:11 PM
Wow, thanks! Very valuable feedback. Thanks for your answers.
California, with your explanation and extra 2 sessions I think I finally understood the rules of the game. We're doing a late but not very-late takeoff:
Catching the wave where it's steep enough to get going but not too late where it's too steep or already starts to break. If something feels not right (steeper than expected, feeling whitewater coming) then bail.
In a beach break I tried to position myself at the edge of the breaking are so once I catch the wave I can immediately escape to a whitewater-free zone.
Also, once we get to takeoff speed, go up to the foil and go away from the whitewater, which is either riding the wave to the side, or running away forward from the way and going back to it to the side where it's not yet broken.

I also found myself in once session with tiny waves feeling that i was close to the whitewater so i pushed hard on my front foot to make sure i dont get the whitewater eject again. If it wasn't tiny I would've probably ejected away.

Now I understand much better how to avoid such injury again. But on the otherhand, those Taco roll-falls can still occur if you make a mistake so I think I'll get an impact vest and add even some additional padding to continue below it to the lower end of the spine because the amount of enery you put on one spot when you fall hard on the wingtip is very dangerous, I  only understood it once it happened to me and I take it as a warning sign and wish to avoid fractured ribs/vertebrae
Title: Re: Painful injury
Post by: Hdip on June 23, 2021, 01:56:04 PM
Never correct over the high side of the board. Go where the foil wants to go. If the board tilts to your heel edge. You lean to your heel edge. Do not lean on your toes. The foil will turn causing you to fall onto the foil.
Title: Re: Painful injury
Post by: sflinux on June 24, 2021, 11:26:55 AM
After a broken rib (SUP), I started wearing an impact vest and love it. 
After fracturing my sacrum (Skateboarding), I started wearing impact shorts.  I find no restriction on mobility and gives extra warmth and floatation.
A helmet is not a bad idea.  Something like a white water kayak full-face helmet would give some face protection.  I generally use a Gath for surfing.
I learned foiling with a kite and picked up a used lacrosse helmet with a cage (not in the surf).
When I fall off foil I usually bring my arms up like a boxer, and tuck my legs up into a ball (leashless).
Wearing a fullsuit gives your extremities some protection.
Wearing booties will give your feet some protection.
I had a bad fall last week SUP surfing where I landed on my fin.  The next day, I noticed that the fin had put a hole in my wetsuit.  Impact vest was intact.  Few days later a bruise was evident in my back, but never had any pain, nor broken skin.  My brother says I ride like Batman.
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