Author Topic: Perfecting the spin turn  (Read 5385 times)

sinrumbofijo

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Perfecting the spin turn
« on: July 07, 2015, 09:30:52 PM »
Was wondering if anyone can offer steps to really perfect the 'toe-side' spin turn. I am a regular footer so this would mean spinning the board counter-clockwise. Somedays I feel great but many others the turn just doesn't happen. Are there steps that any of you use to consistently spin in 1 or two sweeps of the paddle to drop-in? I love the feel of a 'spin and in' but lack consistency which probably means a break in technique. Any comments/suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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Fog City Rider

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2015, 10:15:37 PM »
If you're performing the turn in a surf stance, I think it's a matter of knowing where to be on your board & practicing A LOT. 

Find the sweet spot where you sink the tail, pop out the nose, but still feel "relatively" stable. 

Use a forward sweep stroke.  Sink entire blade in water before pulling nose to tail with your shaft more horizontal than vertical.  Bending the knees can help with that.  Other option: shorter, quick strokes from nose to feet. 

Keep the paddle in a "low brace" position upon recovery while getting it back in position for the next stroke - that way you can break a fall if you lose balance.     

In case you're unfamiliar w/ my terminology, here's a couple links:

Bracing -  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Z3xQZ-48WY
And sweep strokes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kg2Bzi_Cck8

Push your limits and fall in a lot practicing!  It's definitely not easy to see a wave coming, perform a 1-2 stroke pivot turn under pressure in potentially choppy seas, then drop into the wave like a boss! 

/m 

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SUPcheat

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2015, 11:05:49 PM »
I have been practicing this a fair amount on the Prowave and have gotten better at it.  I am down to a 3 to four second 180 degree spin with reasonable regularity in moderate conditions. However, I think a two second spin would be more ideal for monitoring the wave to make sure nobody is coming, then spinning to catch. I have sometimes gotten it to two seconds, so that is what I continue to practice on.

I did one that was nearly instantaneous at Privates without falling, but it was a shock, and I don't remember exactly what I did but I want to do that more.

Most SUP guys still kind of do the "lazy arc" turn around, which makes them a bit unpredictable as far as getting out of their way is concerned i.e. knowing if they will actually catch the wave, then turn at an unpredictable spot and maybe plow into you if you are anywhere in front of them and haven't managed to escape.

I am not really sure I could ever actually teach somebody to do it.  It is kind of like computers, you have to be interested and motivated to do it by practicing until you get it.

The only thing I can put my finger on is that I think of the board nose tipping up and getting loose on the forward part of the board while the drag at the center of the fin cluster and buried tail does the actual spinning while engaging the paddle, like a bearing.  Stepping back up on the board and rotating my body are things I am still practicing, getting the timing right before the board does a Titanic and sinks.

I try to visualize the fin cluster and what it is doing in the tilted position.

Of course, it is one of those things where the young, lithe balance djinns will act like it is easy and make it look easy, but when the old, stiff and cramped try it, disaster pending.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2015, 11:13:19 PM by SUPcheat »
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stoneaxe

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2015, 03:37:51 AM »
I don't usually do it all that often. You need to be fairly deep, or at least I do, to make it work. I prefer to catch waves as early as the board I'm on allows. Not be paddling in with the short boards. There are variables to consider too that can change with each swell.

I can tombstone my 9-0 or 8-4 and spin it 180 in one stroke when I'm on flat water but waves, chop, and wind change that. I think the sweetest feel of a turn into a wave is using the wave energy to do all the work. That has to happen fairly deep and was likely the origin of the instantaneous one you did cheat. If you head into the face at a slight angle and start a hard stroke just as the wave is pushing you up and back it can kick a turn so quick you find yourself suddenly surfing in the pocket. 1st time I did it was a surprise too.

The secret to tombstoning your board is doing it in one step. One long step puts my back foot on the stomp pad, shift your weight back until the board is at 45 degs or so. One or two hard strokes and your 180 degs around. one long step back into surf stance and your board is flat and ready to ride.

I like to think I look as graceful as Leleo Kinimaka doing it but I probably look more like a circus bear trying to balance on a ball.

« Last Edit: July 08, 2015, 03:52:07 AM by stoneaxe »
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yugi

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2015, 04:43:09 AM »
^all the above and…

Some perfecting tips on this I got from Titou that helped me:

1. Plant your blade right up against the board for the beginning of  your sweep stroke, then just do the first 90˚ of a full 360 sweep (from nose of board to just halfway to tail). You have better balance/brace from the paddle in the first half. The second 90˚ you will be sweeping behind you (see Pt2) and can cause you to lose balance. Nothing wrong with doing a full 180 sweep on flatwater where balance is easier.

2. Look well into the direction you are turning. Same as when turning while riding. For toe-side turns this means you’ll square your shoulders parallel to the board axis. Try it. Together with tip-1 about just using the first 90˚ of sweep you’ll feel the difference.

Once I learned this suddenly I began to like frontside turns. Which previously were my bête noire. Obviously the same applies for backside turns, this time shoulders will be at least perpendicular with board axis.

3. Funny it hasn’t been mentioned yet, but one of the tricky parts is coming out of the kick turn. Be prepared to plant your blade for a good forward catch on you return to your cruise position. Nothing more stabilizing than a well planted blade in the power phase.

4. [obviously] Practice.
Practice and use the same steps. Practice in the worst conditions. Not the easiest.

Here’s some practice inspiration for you [Patrice Guénolé, AKA the bear].
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3s_wmxh5LOM
« Last Edit: July 08, 2015, 04:45:47 AM by yugi »

Bean

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2015, 06:14:58 AM »
All good stuff.  Also keep in mind, the lower your stance, the further-out you can stick (sweep) your blade, which of course gives you more leverage to spin the board.

PonoBill

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2015, 06:19:21 AM »
I do a pretty decent spin turn, but I rarely use it. You're stopped when you finish the turn and need to get going from that dead stopped position. I do a slower turn that gets me into the pocket with some speed still on the board. I think the biggest secret to doing a spin is making yourself do it. It's hard to make those moves when your mid-brain is screaming "paddle, paddle, you fool, paddle".  Or maybe that's just me.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2015, 06:22:31 AM by PonoBill »
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surfcowboy

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2015, 08:33:17 AM »
Yes, a tight non spin turn lets you carry some forward motion and be moving when the wave hits. Spins for me are for emergencies and then do you really want to chance a fall?

But I can do a decent one but know that the deeper you sink the tail, the harder it is to pull/step yourself up.

kayadogg

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2015, 09:12:14 AM »
I'm assuming you meant a surf SUP but a raceboard requires similar technique. I think it's even easier on a raceboard, I can spin my 12'6 180 degrees with one stroke. I don't do it as much on my surf SUP, mainly because I'm pretty much always in a staggered stance and the tail of my board is always underwater. I don't need to do quick 180 turns on that board, if anything, I will about a 90 degree turn and approach a wave almost sideways so that as I take my final couple of strokes, I'm positioned correctly on the wave. This is due to a small board with yaw so YMMV. It's a very good skill to have though. In racing, good pivot turns can make or break a race that has a lot of buoy turns. As mentioned already (but in regard to surf), coming out of a pivot turn on a raceboard is something that most don't practice. The idea is not just to spin and then you're done, you want to maintain speed while still initiating a sharp turn and then come out of that turn with as little disruption as possible and get back to your normal paddling stroke.

SUPcheat

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2015, 11:15:25 AM »
My main interest in the maneuver is monitoring the incomings to exploit whatever is unoccupied.  I can do this pretty well on my knees, but I would like to do it standing up while facing the ocean.  The lazy glide turn is just too risky because proners can turn, catch and ride over too quickly.  As pointed out, though, the glide turn is probably better for maintaining stance and momentum to catch the wave face.

One of the surf instructors is a nice guy and says hello to me.  I probably owe him a hundred bucks in unsolicited surf advice.  He told me he's seen me for the last couple of years and likes my "style" because I maintain awareness of the surroundings.  He made me feel better that I'm not total kook any more.

The man hating psycho Surf Sisters of Sappho is a new wrinkle, but I guess that is an "only in Santa Cruz" phenom.
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sinrumbofijo

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #10 on: July 09, 2015, 04:04:02 PM »
Thank you to all who wrote offering tips and advice. Yes, I SUP surf and also use it harvest all the leftovers. Have tried to break down all of the advice into a format I can follow repetitively to gain muscle memory. Here is what I have gleaned:

1.    lower center of gravity by bending knees
2.    reach out with the paddle rotated 90º to the water’s surface, plant deeply near the nose
3.   sweep the paddle widely, away from the board
4.    try ‘dividing’ the paddle motion somewhat into two 90º arcs by just hesitating for a moment while
5.   squaring shoulders to the board axis
6.   on completing the spin; planting the blade in the power position for stability, while bringing the back foot into surfing                position
and…. the problematic area for me….finding the sweet spot for the rear foot...

      *duplicating each time the correct rear foot placement that is neither too far back nor too far forward.*

Again, I appreciate all of the constructive comments. Not being a 'youthful djinn', I must make up with technique what I lack in ability!
Hopefully, this will help others as well.


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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2015, 06:46:45 PM »
Great techniques

RATbeachrider

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Re: Perfecting the spin turn
« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2015, 07:05:49 AM »
I've seen Danny Ching spun the tail of his 10'6 360* while standing still and facing the same direction.  I've also witnessed him paddling up a 6 foot face, spun 180* and dropped down the face.

 


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