Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Still Love My Stretch F4 Quad

Technical Update
Still Love My Stretch F4 Quad

DISCLAIMER: Just before I blurb on with surfboards or technique, I am not one of those hot surfers. I am still trying to figure out how to get there and the progress is at the snail's pace.

So what prompted me to write this note is that I put away the Stretch F4 Quad board for a while mainly because the tail-pad started to peel off and I did not get a chance to fix it until this weekend. In the meantime, I was using the JC Ugly Stick 6'4 for several weeks and not having much fun. Until the repair I have been riding the F4 exclusively for short-board sessions, for at least a year at all sorts of conditions.

When first I got this F4 board, I did not know what to say about it, I was much more used to the JC board, but one important thing I've learned is the importance of sticking with one board for a long time. I have realized after being back on the F4 board that this morning I felt like the "magic" has come back. It is probably true that if I stayed on the JC for a long time, I would probably like that too.

Having said that though I have really noticed the following things that I can do better with the F4 board.
  • Taking off on an angle at the top of the wave is more controlled. You know when the edge of the wave starts to fold, and I am trying hard to get into the wave at an angle so I take off and at the same time, I won't get crushed. This is where I feel my surfing is the weakest and every little bit of help is needed still. And since that means I am giving up the wave to the next surfer a lot, I get less time on the wave. Most other buddies I know bring out longboards, take off much further out and sooner, while I sit a bit inside and wait for the sweet spot (yes, I should be paddling for it.)
  • I feel like stalling less often after a take off. This is where I usually (OK, I admit, almost all the time) lose a momentum and can't surf well. I can pump a bit and gain a bit more of speed, and when that works, I can head the board to where the power is on the wave. This is where I feel much more confident and once I am really on the wave like this; getting power from the wave, I can begin to be a bit more creative... perhaps a bit more aggressive in all movements. I am getting there slowly, but there is still a lot of room to work, and more consistent taking-off is most important agenda for me right now. But now it does happen once or twice in a good session, finally I am getting some pay-off.
  • Turns especially going from the bottom going up then cutting back works great... nothing is more satisfying to me than than a clean and long "S" cutbacks! And from the shore it looks like I am drawing an 8. Yeah! That's fun!
When I got the board, I thought 4-fins are a bit of a gimmick (and still may be) but in my situation, I feel like sticking with this board patiently has helped me a lot!

Surfing is very interesting and continues to be because I can never get good at it to the extent I am rarely satisfied with the rides... when I think I have done a good ride there always is someone who does it better than me and more consistently!


1 comment:

Cynthia said...

Hey, how about a photo of your board?