View Full Version : Gemini as Teaching Tool
13th February 2009, 11:14 AM
The Ricardo Munhoz article on Starboard's home page about Gemini as the best teaching tool (http://www.star-board.com/2009/pages/news/news.php?readmore=487) is quite impressive. I can understand how a tandem carrying both the instructor and the student would increase the fun factor immensely.
Roger & Ellen, have either of you tried the Gemini as a teaching tool? Would students going on a Gemini with an instructor still need the same amount of simulator time?
14th February 2009, 12:04 AM
I've tried to teach students using the Gemini last year (2007 when I had a Gemini in the demo fleet) and I would agree, it sort of works.
On the plus side, you can expose a student to faster sailing (even planing) by using a large rig for the instructor on the rear rig position, and this will get many students "stoked" on windsurfing far earlier in the learning curve than any other method I'm aware of.
On the downside, the student does not really get the full picture of what they need to do as the instructor is really sailing the board with the larger rig at the back.
Also, since the instructor is behind the student (you cannot very well sail the Gemini from the front position) the student cannot really see what the instructor is doing.
I've found the "between the boards tether system" (I think you saw me use this the last couple of years at Lake Okabena) works far better to get the students learning the fastest.
1/ They can see (and imitate) the things the instructor is doing right in front of them.
2/ They are on their own board with their own rig, so mistakes show up right away.
This gives them a much better feel for what is needed to sail the board themselves.
3/ As soon as the instructor sees that the student can sail along, tack, stay upwind,
etc. on their own, the tether is removed and the instructor can coach them by sailing close by. This helps the student become confident in their own skills and abilities very quickly.
The whole process normally takes less that 15 min. to get the student to the point of sailing their own board, controlling their own direction and working with their own rig.
Nothing else I've tried has worked as quickly or as well.
Yes, the student still needs the same amount of simulator time as the time on the simulator is where they learn basic rig handling skills, uphauling, how to tack and jibe,
and the basics of controlling the power in the rig and getting the board to go in the direction the want to go.
Hope this helps,
14th February 2009, 11:48 AM
Will I see you at the Island Style Classi, Sarasota FL (2/28 & 3/1) or at Calema Midwinters, Merritt Island, FL (3/5 thru 3/8) this year.
14th February 2009, 12:03 PM
Unfortunately, you will not see me at either of these events.
Both major sponsors of the Sailworks/Starboard Demo Tour and
A Taste of Windsurfing beginner programs are feeling the need to
cut back on expenditures, so any ATOW or Demo events will have
to be very close to home.
I think we will be doing a Windfest at Frisco Woods (provided the
event organizer wants to do another event this year) and perhaps
some local events in the Mid Atlantic area.
Some of the shops and club organizations have offered to underwrite
the costs to get us there, but not with all the gear and the van/trailer
as in the past 10 years.
Sorry, but it's a sign of the times I think.
16th February 2009, 07:04 AM
So, Roger you dont think this one is an good teaching board. You can fit an howl class on it.
Must be from the 80is or something. Someone knows the story?
16th February 2009, 08:36 AM
Thanks for the video link.
That was amusing!
Yes, from the design of the sails I would agree, late 70's early 1980's.
As stated above, tandem boards are really good for giving the beginner the
full feeling of planing windsurfing, but the sailor positioning is not so good
for learning the basic skills.
17th February 2009, 05:40 AM
Roger, I'm sorry to hear about cutbacks on the Taste of Windsurfing and Demo Tour. WOW and MOWIND will miss having you, your teaching skills, and the demo equipment in Worthington MN in June. Frisco Woods is on my list of events to attend in some future year. And I hope we'll meet again at a USWA NRT event.
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