Windsurfing – Explained in a Nutshell

Some sports are different to others, as in, you have never seen them before. Not many people, unless they live by a sea or ocean, get to try windsurfing or similar water sports. Unless you see those sports every single day, you can’t really tell what’s going on unless you also happen to know a lot of physics. Given that most people are not physicists or have an extensive knowledge of water sports and marine life, we are here to help you understand windsurfing better. 

What Do You Need to Windsurf

Windsurfing is a rather simple sport, once you get a hang of it. But before you do, checking that you have all the right gear is extremely important. You don’t want to be swept out to sea without having the necessary gear at least keep warm if not convenient. You need a windsurfing board which is what you stand on. You need a mast which is the big pole running from the board which also holds the sail. You also need the sail.

But that is not all. You need the boom, which is the part you hold onto while windsurfing. 

These are the necessary things to actually windsurf. Some recommendations would obviously be sunglasses. Going into the summer sun with strong winds can actually tire and damage your eyes. It is especially annoying given that the water reflects the sun, making your eyes suffer more.

Shoes are recommended to actually keep your feet from getting bruised or scratched, and it can sometimes help with the grip. A wetsuit is almost necessary, but definitely recommended. A life jacket is absolutely recommended, given how even experienced windsurfers get swept out to sea sometimes. 

How to Windsurf

Once you get your board in the water, you need to place it so that the sail faces the wind and the board is 90 degrees to the wind. Once you stand on top of your board, the sail should be in the water. Pull the sail, but you should do that with your back straight, never bent over. Sails and masts can be really heavy and filled with water, making it a lot of strain for the back. You should use the cord which is supposed to be used for lifting your mast and sail.

Once you start lifting the sail, when it is only slightly touching the water, comes the tricky part. With your feet apart, lean in to grab the mast slightly below the boom with a single hand. Place your feet on the other side of the board and make sure to pull the mast towards you and not the other way around (unless you want a bath). Once you grab and pull the mast, you should grab the boom with your other hand. You can open and close the sail, but slowly. A rapid change in the sail’s shape means that you can get more wind and lose balance. Your body needs time to adapt to those minor and major changes.

Practice and repeat.

Windsurfing can be a really exciting sport, one which you can enjoy. Compared to other extreme sports, it can be very friendly to beginners, especially good swimmers. Provided that you take the necessary safety precautions and that you have friends and people around, even your first time will be a wonderful one.