surfing trick tips from one of Canada's top competitive surfers
The frontside Air is considered a basic maneuver in today's new school era of surfing, and although, in my opinion, it is the
easiest air to complete, it is still very challenging. Before attempting this maneuver you should have your
cutbacks, floaters, and re-entry's down, and your surfing should be stylish and solid.
Once you have these manuevers wired catch a wave that is between two and five feet with some power and wall.
You are going to need a lot of speed so pump down the line, staying between the middle and the top of the wave,
generating all the speed you can. Look for a section that is about to close
out, and bottom turn from the middle of the wave toward the section that is just
about to break.
Carry as much speed as you can toward the curling lip by
bending your knees and powering through the bottom turn. At this point your eyes should be focused
on the part of the lip where you are planning to launch off, and your board should be aimed off the lip into the air above.
Now, you just have to carry your momentum off the lip into the air. Make sure your board is
flat on the lip when you take off, and don't try to go too high at first because
you will end up flailing. To enter into the air you need to drive your momentum
off the top of the wave by pushing off the tail of your board.
When entering the air turn the nose of your board towards the beach by straightening out your
back leg slightly. Pull your knees up to your chest to stay in control and to
stay stylish in the air. Make sure you are over top of your board, and not leaning back too far. You can add different variations
to the air at this point by doing double grabs, mute grabs, frontside grabs etc.
Look down in front of you to spot your landing, let go of your grab (if you chose to do one), and extend your legs slightly so your
knees can absorb the impact. It is best to land in the foam because it is the softest spot. Try to land with your board flat on the
wave. As soon as your board hits the water bend your knees, and stay centered over your front foot. This part can be a little bumpy
so stay low and centered. Ride out of the foam and be stoked because you just landed a tricky maneuver.
Frontside airs can be preformed in many different ways, but in my opinion look the best
when you use the wave as a ramp to guide you in to the air, not when you ollie
off the wave. Get a video of Taj Burrow, and study it, because nobody does
frontside airs better than him.
Carry speed by driving through your bottom turn, and launching off the lip cleanly.
Push out your back leg, and pull your knees to your chest to stay in control.
Stay over top of your board.
Stomp it, and ride away clean.
I'll be back in a while with another of PD's Trick Tips, and until then I'll be surfing and traveling.