Windsurfing Magazine





Where: Jamie Knox Watersports
When: 20-26 September 2003
The theme: Introduction to… and improve your …wave sailing.
Standard: Able to sail a small (sub 100 litre) board on all points
of sailing (especially upwind). 100% waterstarts and,
most importantly, confident swimming around in the

What’s it all about?
Firstly I don’t want you to get the idea that this is a course for dreadlocked
surf heads where we’ll daily be seeking out mast high tubing waves. The great
thing about the Dingle peninsula is it offers a huge range of conditions no
matter what the wind and swell direction. You can find flat water and churning
waves within a two minute drive of each other. You are NOT going to be thrown
out into conditions that are way over your head. The course is all about improving
your skill and awareness and that will never happen if you’re scared witless!

The Course Content
I won’t try and formulate an exact timetable for that will depend on the prevailing
conditions. However, in no particular order, we will be looking at:
q Theory The wave environment. Seeing how and why waves break; what conditions
are good for wave sailing; how wind direction effects the waves themselves and
the manoeuvres you can do; the tactics of wave sailing – knowing where to launch,
learning how to read the waves, how and where to pick up the waves, which way
to ride them and how to choose your line out through them. The ‘what happens
if …’ factor, knowing what to do if your down in the impact zone or something

q Setting up How do you set up a wave board and rig? We look at the importance
of footstrap setting and size, boom height and harness line length to put you
in the best position for manoeuvring – very different from general free-riding.

q General skills. On flat water we look at slicker faster waterstarting techniques;
how to sail and get the most out of a wave board, especially early planing and
hard carving gybes which form the basis of the bottom turn.

q Getting out. Good launching and carrying techniques. The best way to handle
the shorebreak. How to punch through white water, how to come back in safely.

q Jumping. How to squash jumps when you’re trying to make it to the outside,
how to set up for big jumps and control flight and landing; if the desire and
conditions allow, we can move onto table tops and forward and back loops.

q Riding. The techniques of upwind and downwind riding – understanding which
way to go on the wave, where to turn on the wave. For the more advanced, we
look at how to keep speed up through the bottom turn and how to get that first

Of course we try and sail as a group and look after and encourage each other
but essentially it’s all about individual tuition and one to one feedback. Be
assured that the course content will be tailored around your needs.

Teaching techniques
Getting better in the waves comes primarily from getting out there, putting
in the time, so you get ever more comfortable in the environment. However we
can go through a lot of the manoeuvres and techniques on dry land.
On the water, we do short sessions with instant feedback. And of course I use
the video camera to analyse your every move. The Guiness-fuelled playback sessions
are enlightening, sometimes humiliating but always hilarious.
When conditions allow, I sail with you one to one as a way to offer a model
and a trigger, especially for jumps (sometimes it’s better to do as I say, not
as I do!/

Other activities
It’s one of the best surfing bays in Europe. The centre has a pile of long and
short surfboards. Surfing is not only great fun but also excellent for your
general balance and wave awareness.
If the wind is very light, we have long boards on which to freestyle – something
we did last year in the presence of Fungi the dolphin.

As for the evenings … well it’s Ireland – what do you expect?!

Bookings please through Jamie Knox on 00 353 667 139411
For general enquiries about any aspect of the course, contact me, Peter Hart
Tel & Fax +44 (0) 1243 376750
Mobile: +44 (0) 7711 630416


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