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Old 15th June 2009, 07:09 AM   #7
Dream Team - School Guru
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,177

Hi Joe,
There is a REASON why it's better to get back either into or very near the footstraps before you hook in to your harness.
Most boards have a rockerline that pretty much DEMANDS that you move back progressivley on the board to a point where you rear foot is on the center line and your front foot is in the front footstrap BEFORE the board will actually plane off well/easily.
Sure, you can hang around forward of this point, and your board may actually plane a bit if you have lots of wind.
But until you move back, the planing surfaces of your board (usually the flatter (fore and aft) surfaces behind the rocker transition and under or behind the front footstraps) will actually be negative rather than positive which is pretty much required for your board to plane freely.
So, you need to move back on the board, to get the nose up a little and the planing surfaces correctly inclined so the board wants to rise up over the water rather than pushing the rocker transition THROUGH the water.
So, hooking in while your weight and feet are too far forward really does not work.
And, as suggested before, you really cannot determine how long your lines need to be and what your boom height needs to be until you get back near the footstraps and get the fore/aft trim of your board correctly set to plane freely.
Granted, if you watch really good sailors, they seem to hook in and move back all at the same time, but actually they move back progressively, then hook in and put their weight on the harness while they are getting the rear foot into the back strap.
It only APPEARS that they are hooking in first because they do this all in one fluid sequence.
As far as hooking in and then moving back, that's pretty unstable as you have nothing to anchor your front foot and push the board forward until you get into the front strap.
Then as you hook in, you transfer the forward "push" of your front foot to mast foot pressure from the rig.
As far as moving the rig forward, why do you think you need to do that?
There is a position in the range of the mast track (and pretty specific to each board) that will get your board on plane the earliest and allow the board to plane freely and fast.
That's where you need to place your mast foot.
Then you adjust the other things (boom height, harness line length, footstrap position,
etc. to get yourself comfortable around that mast foot position.
As far as back foot first, that works, in very high winds and waterstarting, but for normal sailing in moderately powered conditions, it will put you too far back on the board too soon and keep you from getting on plane easily.
Remember, getting on plane, whether you are underpowered and need to pump, or nicely powered and can just sheet in and go right up onto a plane, is always a "progression".
You go a little faster, move back a little more, go a little faster still, move back until you get your back foot on the boards sweet spot to jump onto a plane, and your front foot into the front footstrap, then hook in to get your weight off the board so it can really accelerate (being pushed by mast foot pressure), then worry about getting your back foot into the back footstrap.
Hope this helps,

Last edited by Roger; 15th June 2009 at 08:29 PM.
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