In this instalment of his comprehensive series examining every aspect of wavesailing, Jem Hall looks to upgrade your back loops with the one-handed variation…
Many of you should now be feeling the fear and doing it anyway on the forward looping – either by working those tail-up jumps and wymaroos, or actually pulling the trigger. Those of you who are forwarding should be looking to set new standards of higher, cleaner and faster loops, and are now psyched up to let go and drop that front hand. So let’s move on to one of the best and most graceful jumps out there, the one-handed back loop (backie). We can’t let all those nice steep stunt ramps go to waste, so the time has come to rack up the vertical airtime and take a look over that front shoulder as you drop the front hand.
The beauty of this move is that, as with the regular backie, if you’re in the ‘go for it but under-rotate slightly’ category, the feeling is fantastic even if you don’t make it. But when you do make it the feeling is amazing! It’s weightless and graceful and you just feel so free.
This move is not at a high level of consistency for me (yet!) so I can remember all the very best ones, and often find myself daydreaming about them. It’s a move that can be built towards, by developing style and competency in big, steep, one-handed jumps, as this will kick the whole journey off. As with many big moves, visualisation is key. Imagine one of your icons performing it, like the master Josh Angulo. Place yourself in this picture (or video) in your mind, and then you will begin to have the feeling of the move and your body will learn it. In sport psychology terms I believe, from my degree-days, this is called ‘participant modelling’.
The first one you pull off (and you will, for belief is a huge part of all windsurfing moves) will feel incredible, but equally incredible is the journey of discovery as you seek the sweetest and most succulent of all jumps, the one-handed backie.