Author Topic: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!  (Read 1091 times)

surfwingsteve

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I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« on: February 20, 2020, 05:56:34 PM »
Man you uber ahtletes and seasoned watermen make this look SOOOO easy.  I badly need your help. Ok, first a little (Maybe a lot?) bit about me.  The more you know the better.  Wingfoiling is just a big physics problem really.  I'm 51, 6', 200lbs, in decent shape, have surfed since I was 16, have SUP surfed since 2009 on the crazy ass Oregon Coast, Kitesurfed, for about 2 years, Snowboard regularly, skate, blah blah blah.  I've moved to the Puget sound area in Washington, 2 hours to Surf, and I MUST get into the water, so I'm onto the next thing.  Wingfoiling. BUT CRAP I CAN'T GET UP ON MY FOIL!  My gear-144L 7'6" Blue planet easy foil with a 1750cm wing, a 4m Naish surfwing.  I've flown for a few brief seconds when I'm in what I would call howling winds- with white caps, 2-3foot wind waves, etc.  I can sail the board just fine but STAYING up wind and not doing a long paddle or walk of shame prevents me from just flying downwind to get up onto the foil.  I think I am needing more hull speed to get up?  Do I need to commit to a downwinder?  Most winds around here are sub 20.  Since I havent kited in about 18 years, my guess is I'm overestimating the wind speed and just am not used to 20-30kt winds anymore.  I just purchased a 6m Ozone, because my goal is to be able to get out into the water with as little as wind as possible and TO GET UP ON THIS THING.  Did I make the right move?  Is my board too big?  Am I too fat and old?  MUST I get towed behind a boat?  Please dont tell me I need a $2,000 2400cm foil.  Thanks guys, just joined but have been trolling your conversations for months.  BTW, I've been out maybe 12-15 times. Cheers.

PonoBill

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2020, 06:41:43 PM »
6M will make it easy.

I'm 235#, 6'2" (maybe shrunk a bit), 73 and have a crap knee and ruined shoulders. If I can do it, you can do it, and I do it almost every day.

Step one, stop worrying about the walk of shame. If you're worrying about direction you've added one more conflicting element to a sport that has a lot of moving parts. Once you're up and flying you can worry about that. For now, just plan on it. Stick slippers in your impact vest if you have to, but job one is getting up and getting under control.

Step two--get your feet in the right position, whatever that might be for your board and foil. that generally means back foot over the mast, front foot in the magic spot, whatever that might be. If you wheelie uncontrollably and you can't make the nose flatten back down when you get up, then your front foot is a little too far back. If the board won't come off the water even when you're zooming along, you're too far forward. Most people start out too far forward.

Once on your feet, get your feet in position with your body twisted a bit so your hips face somewhat forward. get moving on a fairly close reach. once you're moving briskly, point a little more downwind to build speed, pump the kite without sheeting it in--in other words, pump with both arms equally. At the same time pump the board as much as you can. The board will get bursts of acceleration as it gets light on the water and finally will come up on foil. Be ready for it to pick up speed quickly. Don't freak out, look out at a distance to lessen the feeling of speed and head a little more upwind. this will increase the effective wind speed and increase pressure on the wing, but won't build speed much. Relax, enjoy, trim as best you can. Going upwind is easy. Downwind is more difficult.

But yeah, that foil wing is a tad on the small size for your first try. Alan Cadiz has people he's teaching bring their biggest foil wing for the first few sessions. I flew first on a GoFoil 240. Now I mostly use an Axis 101, which is 1430 cmsq. Biggest wing means lots of lift and lots of drag, which keeps you from freaking out over the speed. If you can borrow something bigger that would be good, but if you keep hammering away you'll get up on the wing you have, and once you are up and flying it all gets easier. You'll never use the big wing again.
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

Admin

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2020, 12:29:08 AM »
Hi Surfwing,

You are going to have a ball with this!  This is a very gear specific sport.  Moreso than any other I have tried.  If you spend some sessions on the Axis 1020, 65 mast, normal fuselage, 500 tail or similar you will be up and flying.  Your body just needs a little while on an easy lifting, user friendly wing to sort out what needs to be done.  It is one of those Aristotle things.  “For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.”

ninja tuna

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2020, 05:35:21 AM »
Don't know if you have been able to spend any time trying to foil behind a boat.  But for me that was a big help for when I actually started flying with the wing, I already knew how to control the foil for the most part with out having to learn both at once.

clay

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2020, 07:59:56 AM »
I also weigh 200 lbs.

I had my first success going to a bigger kite - 7m and going to a protected harbor that had smooth water, wind was around 15, 2400 wing made it easier to get up.

I had my first success in rough water on a bigger board, 180L 7'10".

I suggest finding a way to borrow bigger foil/board so you can feel if it is the gear or you.

Aloha, I welcome and appreciate all responses of positivity and good feeling.

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOIE6FWr1SpWvbPJIIiEgog

surfwingsteve

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2020, 08:11:09 AM »
Tons of great info!  Mahalo!  The few times I got up I found when I started forward on the board to get on a plane, my hull speed would increase, then stepping back a bit would launch me onto the foil, then it was a yard sale but I'll fix the latter part. Yes, I need to commit to the beamreach for speed, know I will lose some ground, and then hope to get upwind easier or just smile on my walk of shame. The choppy water and windwaves haven't been too much of a problem because I'm used to that with Supsurfing and the 144L board is making the standing and riding the board part smooth.  I think, looking back, a 2000cm+ foil would have been best, but I think it would soon have been stowed and not used again, whereas the larger kite might allow lower winds, without a giant sluggish foil that is harder to carve or Surf on.  I'm unfortunately figuring out that the gear is critical, there is more to come, and this is going to only get more expensive ;).

PonoBill

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2020, 10:34:09 AM »
Two things in your reply. We might not think alike, but if I'm worried about getting back to where I started AT ALL it changes what I'm willing to do on the board. If I'm trying to learn something and not just farting around I put it completely out of my mind, even now after half a year of banging away at this complicated sport.

When I know the wind direction means what it takes to get back will be a bit sucky--like reaching as tight as I can out to the horizon and then doing the same thing back--and still not making it, I stupidly stop practicing downwind turns. My ultimate goal is to be completely comfortable doing big wind Maliko runs, so that is unproductive. Forget about that. Easy to say, hard to do, but it makes a big difference.

Second, if you are moving around on the board it's hard to get your feet in the right position. Feeling free to move is critical later, but in the beginning your feet have to be in exactly the right position. I'm often tempted to move forward when I'm trying to get up to increase the board speed, especially when there are some swells that might help. That never works for me. I have to get back into my happy spot and just pump.

You'll see the really good folks do a couple of tiny pumps and pop up. That's not what you need to do. I look like I'm doing the chicken dance when I'm trying to pump the foil up. Jump up and down as hard as you can without moving your feet out of position.
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

Dwight (DW)

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2020, 11:11:06 AM »
If you wait for the board to PLANE before popping onto to foil, you waited way too long. Beginners often do this. Then when they do pop up, they are going way too FAST on foil and it LIFTS way to fast and powerfully bucking them off.

Just for reference, an experienced winger never planes off. We pop onto foil when we are just barely moving.

My system is wait for the gust. I know exactly the gust needed to pump and pop up. While waiting on the gust, I just putt putt upwind, looking upwind for the next gust. You can putt putt along upwind as long as needed. No need to go downwind. When the gust comes, bounce the board and pump the wing like a crazed fool. When you get it just right, it pops right up, easy she goes. Flying along no drama, and very little power and speed.


surfwingsteve

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2020, 02:16:18 PM »
Need to improve the pump.  I feel like I have the nose of that board just slapping up and down in the water to no avail.  I pump the kite with both arms and I see some just with the back arm.  Thoughts.  Agree PonoBill that I need to forget about staying upwind and just go for speed.  I feel like maybe a foot strap might help with the pump?  So far no strap because I'm still just figuring out where the hell I belong on that board- remember, falling is not my problem.  I can sail the board in 20kt winds all day, AND not lose ground.  Thats the problem, gotta stop worrying about losing ground and commit to the speed to get up.

PonoBill

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Re: I'm Foiling and I can't get up!
« Reply #9 on: February 21, 2020, 09:45:32 PM »
I empathized today. I sailed all morning with my 5M wing and 101 Axis foil, but when the wind came up some more and I switched to the 4.2M wing I should have changed foils. the power for an easy pump up with the 5M is not there with the 4.2M. I would have been fine with a bigger foil wing, but I pumped myself silly with the 101 going goofy foot, and it was not that easy getting up going regular foot. As soon as I got up I was fine in either direction, but getting up was a problem.

If you're not skinny or young, or both--big wings rock, both foil and hand wing (or whatever we're gonna call these things).
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

 


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