Fully rested after a month off, Jem Hall is straight back into his frontside series as he gets you having it on some frontside aerials.
Now that you’re hungry for some real progression in your riding and your all-out attack on the lip you’re about to launch into one of the best moves there is: the aerial. The feeling you get when you connect with a good section and boost an air off it as you fly in front of the wave and look back towards the beach is amazing. I should know, as between you and me I’m going to let you into a little secret… I’ve only been doing some half decent ones in the last couple of years. There – I’ve said it. But now I’ve ’fessed up and come out of the closet I’m on a motivational mission to inspire you to do some aerials – and there’s no better way to get the positive vibes across than when yours truly is fully fired up and working super-hard on something himself.
On my 2009 Baja trip I just fully went for it, and after an hour a day getting worked on this and many moves I got my aerials moving forward and in front of the wave. Added inspiration also came from my clients’ unbridled passion and commitment to the cause…
The move is dependent on:
• Wave selection
• Speed down-the-line
• Jumping competency (on both tacks)
Your timing when hitting the section will improve as you work on getting more vertical in your ventures up and at the lip. As you get more wave time you’ll enhance your psychic powers to predict when a wave will break. The timing of your run-up to hit a section, accept its energy, jump and project you and your kit to land in front of the wave will become much more refined. This is, after all, essentially what an aerial is. Of course, there will be times when instead of you hitting the lip it’s the lip hitting you, but this is all part of the fun. If you don’t go, you just won’t know.
The best conditions are definitely in cross or cross-off winds, and you want to make it easy at first by keeping your line high and along the wave where the energy is. So it’s a bit of a speed run along the wave and then a direction change to jump off the section you’ve been eyeing up.
The more vertical you go in your bottom turn the harder you make it for yourself as your timing has to be spot on, so take our suggested line for your aerial to make your connection and land back in front of the wave. As you progress, because you believe you will, you can go more vertical when your timing and aerials get better.
The key tips for this move are speed and timing. If you go faster the board is better able to release from the wave, and you can be more aggressive and hit the section a bit later. Then with good timing you can use all of the energy the wave has to offer you. This move is great fun and scary enough to get that focus we all need and want. Enjoy!