If what I'm hearing from your above post is correct, there's something else missing from your repertiore.......
You need to do all the basic steps to uphaul and get underway, then when your board is moving nicely, THEN you worry about heading upwind.
1/ Uphaul with your feet straddling the mast (one in front one behind) and the arches of your feet right over the fore and aft centerline of the board?
2/ When you have the rig fully uphauled, are you holding the mast with your front hand
(or both hands)?
3/ Do you then step back on the board so your front foot is facing nearly forward and your toes are behind the mast foot?
Is your rear foot back about a shoulders width behind the front foot, facing slightly forward with your heel on the boards fore/aft centerline (James's beginner technique drawing is quite good except that where his drawing has you placing your feet you are too far forward (the mast and your front leg are in contention for the same space) and the back foot has the arch on the centerline which will tip the board upwind and cause you to "round up".
4/ Do you then bring the rig across in front of your shoulder until it balances (it becomes pretty much weightless which is a very nice thing).
Only after you have the mast well upwind (beyond the boards fore/aft centerline) so that it truly balances can you begin to sheet the sail in.
5/ Do you only use one or two fingers on your back hand to sheet the sail in?
6/ Do you only sheet the sail in until the board moves. (Sheeting in more just destroys the forward drive and then you will drift sideways for sure).
7/ When your board is sailing along on a beam reach with a bit of speed
THEN you can rake the rig back a little and apply some lee rail pressure to get it to sail upwind.
I'll bet you are leaving several of the "easiest way to windsurf" steps out of your program and this is what causes you to drift sideways.
Hope this helps,
Last edited by Roger; 13th August 2008 at 10:06 AM.