Strapping

For the beginning windsurfer, there are a number of milestones along the path of improvement. None of these steps are obligatory but their accomplishment means that you can windsurf longer, easier and in a broader range of conditions. It's no fun to be on the water struggling or the beach while your buds and budettes are having a good time.

After windsurfers start to become comfortable being out in planing strength winds and getting used to the harness, they begin to learn to put their feet into the footstraps. These same straps that seemed so illogically placed at the sinky tail of the board suddenly are now appearing underfoot. They've been told that footstraps are handy (footy?) things to use but, as soon as they pick up one foot or the other to put them into the straps, bad things seem to happen: catapaults, veering upwind, falling on the sail. While more experienced sailors will swear that they abhor the idea of planing without being in the straps, the newly-minted intermediate sees it oppositely. Footstraps seems to be the cause of problems, not a cure.

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Journal Entry: April 8

When I began seriously windsurfing, I began to keep a journal, notes in a little spiral bound notebook. It was quite helpful. I logged my sessions and noted sail trim settings - downhaul, outhaul, etc.
I ran across it the other day when cleaning out the garage and ran across this entry:


That was twenty three years ago. I'd had a good day windsurfing and then got in the car and turned on the radio.


I would have written that differently had I known that it would be posted for public consumption. Nirvana was a big deal as we transitioned from the synth New Wave and hair metal of the 80s to the grunge of the 90s and Kurt Cobain was, arguably, its biggest voice.

As is typical for me, the self-discipline petered out after a few more entries. That's probably for the best as a few of the other entries were horribly arrogant for a newbie. I'm not very good now, two decades later, so to read my self-assessment then is a bit cringey. Ah, the folly of youth.


Oh, and Amy is one my wife's good friends from med school. Just in case anybody was thinking, "What?"

You Are Not Average

Quote:

Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that.
- George Carlin

Fortunately, we aren't talking about your intelligence but, rather, your body size. A lot of us aren't average. We are bigger, smaller, heavier and lighter than the "average" windsurfer. And, certainly, we don't windsurf in an average place.


Peter Hart has written a pair of articles about windsurfing when you aren't the average size. We can't recommend these enough. You should read both whether you are a larger or smaller than average person as there is a lot of wisdom to be gleaned.

Drone

We've been wanting to write about this for quite some time: how drone photography changes the way that we and the rest of the world sees windsurfing.

For those of us who have windsurfed for a long time, still photography was the more common method of relaying the windsurfing experience to others. If done by a family member, it usually resulted in a nice seascape with a smudge on the horizon which indicated "windsurfer". Unless you had a friend with a really good telephoto lens, this was really the way the world saw you - that dot on the horizon. Colorful dacron sails at least made us noticeable but then we had to go and ruin that with the advent of the monofilm sail. While monofilm had distinct performance advantages with it's lack of stretch, it made windsurfing about as visually appealing as a Pringle potato chip.

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