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Old 22nd May 2008, 05:23 PM   #3
pierrec45
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Sydney
Posts: 81
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I'm even less of a pro, but if may add...

- try a given trick a few times, say 5, but don't spend your whole day on it. I find it best when I try a few times, take a breather, think about it, go try something else, then come back to it. For some reason, the learning is faster, and when you come back to it, sometimes you've improved just like that, for no reason.

- make sure you have moves on both tacks. There are sailors who can freestyle only "one way". That's too limited. Not all moves have to happen both sides, in fact I don't believe it's possible to be fully proficient both ways. At least keep the easy ones for your "weak" side, i.e. duck tack, heli tack, fancy gybes, board 360, etc.

- I agree with the man above: practicing in shallow waters makes everything easier. Unfortunately it also makes one lazy. Make sure you can still go out afar and do the same tricks.

- underpowered better than overpowered. When in doubt, use smaller a sail. You need control and pumping, not speed.

- boom height: this is important. Experiment, see what's good for you, but don't just use one height for the rest of your freestyle career without at least trying around. IMO: there are way too high booms out there for freestyle...

- I personally never go walkabout for miles. If you don't feel like freestyling and want a rest, then go do agressive gybes and tacks every few hundred yards. Your general freestyle will improve from those kind of sessions, in my experience.

- don't be a snub with wind: too many sailors out there think that they're too good for lighter winds. I'm not, you ain't, nobody is. There's always something to learn, and balance is always exercised is all conditions, that will be improved when the wind picks up. You don't have the choice here anyways - wind in Kingston is getting flakier every year...

- lighter wind freestyle: you've seen videos on the Tube of that kind of freestyle. Consider strongly doing it. Again, in Kingston... Plus it's good overall for your shortie skills as well, me reckon anyways.

- teach other people and newbies. You get advice from people around you, so you the sport now...

All the best.
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