Comments in Technique

Date Article Author
January 27, 2014 How to Plane Jim
Hi Henry, I have recently returned to windsurfing (first learned in the mid 80's) and I'm a heavy duty sort of guy ideal for the front row of a rugby scrum. Thanks to your great video's, I now feel encouraged that I can get planing on my large board and progress this year once the UK weather warms up a bit!
June 1, 2013 Rig Recovery
Your videos and comments are really helpful, the best, great website, good for average Joe windsurfer like me who want to improve Thanks, Mike from Québec (Canada)
May 24, 2013 Getting into Footstraps Denis From Lancieux France
Thanks, this really helps me understand the whys ,as I only begin putting my feet in.
May 14, 2013 Learning to Waterstart Luis Canhoto
Hi Henry! ......I did it for the first time !! It was very simple. Just recover the rigg ......pointing the direction and GO.....Thank you for your tips. The next step is " footstraps" .
May 6, 2013 How to Waterstart A
Henry, You are an inspiration in capturing the dynamic imperfections that dog us all.
April 19, 2013 How to Waterstart Brian C
Great Video Henry.... keep them coming
April 9, 2013 Learning to Waterstart Luis Canhoto
Hi Henry, Let me present myself. My name is Luis, I'm, 44 , 95 Kg weight, and I´m Portuguese. I´ve started windsurfing recently ( about 2 years ) , and as usual I´ve looked in the Internet for Vid´s about Windsurf Techniques. As You´ve said they often treats us ( beginners ) as "nerds" and make it to ( dam much ) easy . Fortunately I found your videos in the Youtube and discover your site. I found your tips very complete and ( really) easy to understand, emphasysing what is really important abou waterstat . In my next Windsurf session I´ll try your tips , and I´m sure i will succeed this time. I´ll let you know then ! :) Thank you, Luis
April 3, 2013 Rig Recovery Ingo
Hi Henry,thank you very much i will try the "lazy waterstart" next week in Dahab.Your videos are much easier to understand than others.Thanks and greating from Germany Ingo
February 14, 2013 Rig Recovery Steven
Hi Henry, great videos and great how you are helping so many people! A top tip you could maybe include for getting the rig out of the water is to pop to battens round to the right side of the mast before you try to get the rig up - makes it so much easier. Just like you say with the mast perpendicular to the wind but rather than swimming all the way to the tip of the mast have you tried holding to mast about an arms width above the boom and pulling / sliding it upwind towards you - not lifting at all - the sail literally pops out of the water - from there it is easy to grab the boom and go - using this technique I can get a sail flying without using my hands at all - just my teeth :)
September 18, 2012 How to Plane Henry Thomas

Hi John,

I use a Dakine seat harness. The first one I got was the large size and then I got an extra large. The L was just a bit tight, had to have all the straps in their max position and suck my gut in - the XL though is a bit big, I seem to swim around in it. Best to try them on in the store before you buy to get the right fit. Both om mine however work very well and are comfortable, but can look a bit like a big nappy at times. Its just the way large seat harnesses are, they provide a lot of room for girth and provide support all the way up to your mid back, but this makes them look rather unflattering standing on the beach beside a younger slimmer person in a waste harness ;)

Nevertheless I have tried both a seat harness and waste harness on the water, and I love the extra leverage I get from the seat harness. You just need to make sure you have longer harness lines to compensate for the lower bar position compared to a waste harness.


September 17, 2012 How to Plane John smith
hi henry great video what type of harness are you using ? being a heavywieght myself im having trouble getting a comfortable fit
August 25, 2012 Rig Recovery Henry Thomas

Hi Jacek,

The whole idea is to use the sail like wing - the sail generates lift, and it is this lift that stops you from sinking. Consequently the most difficult part of the water start is when he sail is flat in the water. That's why you work you way up to the tip - its lighter to lift it there - lift the tip of the sail over your head and as long as the sail is orientated perpendicular to the wind, it will fly and generate/maintain its own lift. The challenge for the sailor is to control that lift while you get into position and then have it lift you out of the water onto the board. As you are lifted onto the board, most of your weight should be on the sail, the board will start moving forward, and this combination of factors - board movement and sail lift - maintains the lift to stop you and board from sinking.

August 25, 2012 Learning to Waterstart Henry Thomas

Hi Linas,

Really glad you found it helpful and well done, learning to waterstart!


August 25, 2012 Learning to Waterstart Linas
You give so detailed lessons here, which replace instructor. I have learned waterstart from You! Thanks a lot!
August 25, 2012 Rig Recovery Jacek Polubiec

One thing puzzles me about the water start when it is time to put one of the feet on the top of the board. At that point, what is supposed to prevent the sailor and the rig from sinking? It seems that even with the life preserver it would be hard, never mind without it.

August 11, 2012 How to Ocean Waterstart Jon
Hi Henry, great vid and good tips especially with regards to keep the sail high in swell. A few pointers from me to you (yes, I am a bit cheeky) 1) Avoid getting both feet/legs on the board in any type of waterstart (except if your board is flipped over). Keeping one leg in the water (the front one) will work like a daggerboard/fin and keep you from floating too much downwind - which can be a real issue if you are out in the waves 2) Hands closer together (unless you are overpowered, in which case do bring them a little apart for control) gives you more power in the sail overall, which assists you in getting back on the board faster. Great site!
August 5, 2012 Learning to Waterstart Carsten
Thanks for the guide, i looked at a lot of other sites, but only this one, together with your videos made it really clear how to water start the laza way. Thanks, Carsten
August 2, 2012 How to Plane Tom B
Thanks Henry - It is really helpful to see a larger guy like myself in action. Very encouraging and also inspiring. I hope to be regularly planing soon. Regards, Tom B. Auckland NZ
June 24, 2012 How to Waterstart 3Scores&11
This is really good. I have been able to beach start for sometime. I have trouble when water is above my knees. I am going to follow your instruction and try some more. Thanks a lot from Florida
June 19, 2012 Teaching your Kids Windsurfing Henry Thomas

My daughter was about seven at the time, not sure about her weight - but she was too light to handle the rig on her own. She probably would have been better off with an Ezzy 1.5m kids rig. Nevertheless, my kids will grow into using this gear - there are plenty of summers ahead of us. The sail is 4m - that's about the size I would recommend for your son. Perfect for sailing in light winds (>10kt) and as he gets older he will be able to sail it in stronger winds.

If you want to get specific, have a look at my windsurfing gear calculator, it has an option for Kids under Activity, so you can enter your child's weight etc. - see what it spits out. However you will probably want to go a bit larger so they don't grow out of it too quick.

The thing I liked about the Aquaglide setup was that I could tag along on the back, give them a lesson and help them out. Its needs to be fun - I have heard stories of kids on their own getting stranded out on the water - with all the trauma that entails - who never wanted to go back out again. Very costly mistake when you consider the investment in gear involved.

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