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Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

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Kamikuza
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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby Kamikuza » Wed Dec 25, 2019 6:35 am

“Have an exit plan”
With tacks, I simply couldn’t get my head around then at all, do I just started trying to ride opening and through the wind. After a bit, the light bulb moment came. Now I’m working on consistency and style...

Been meaning to start to try ollies too but am waiting for warmer weather and flat water location...

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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby jakemoore » Thu Dec 26, 2019 6:08 am

slowboat wrote:
Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:55 am
Since you are not using much kite power to take off, what is better? A smaller foil that can go faster upwind at take off or a larger wing with more lift for the initial pop?
As jumptheshark said, strapless landings are the real trick. Easy wing! Bigger with slower speed, smaller airs and easy recovery. Smaller and faster wings mean bigger air and you have to try to keep the board on your feet and get it positioned right to land. I much prefer my 70 cm mast for jumping. I have an 800 cm2 wing that is low aspect and a very easy fun shape and it’s my favorite. This is 1100 cm2 efficient wing in light winds. A ‘surf” wing is probably better to land than this wing. This may be the first jump I landed on the 100 cm mast. The board also matters a lot for progression. If touchdowns cause a fall then it will be harder.

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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby robclaisse » Fri Jan 03, 2020 5:51 pm

Been fun reading this thread but I haven't had a chance to chip in but then a few days back I started landing strapless grabbed airs with some consistency and even managed to land some on the foil. Anyway, here's a quick GoPro clip of my first one - small and lacking style but it's a starting point to work from:



And I also then wrote a blog post with some thoughts on what I found helped to take me from trying and crashing ALOT to probably getting them 1 in 3 now:
http://www.progression.me/blog/six-tips ... abbed-air/
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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby jumptheshark » Fri Jan 03, 2020 6:04 pm

Nice clean air.

Great shot from the lines. Really shows the timing of the back loop.
Last edited by jumptheshark on Fri Jan 03, 2020 6:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby jakemoore » Fri Jan 03, 2020 6:08 pm

robclaisse wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 5:51 pm
:
WOOT!

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jumptheshark
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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby jumptheshark » Fri Jan 03, 2020 6:15 pm

Dude, you gotta post the info! This is all gold from the link Rob posted. Needs to be here too.

"here are a few insights I’ve had that have helped me increase consistency:

First up watch these two videos, Back to Brazil and Twist and Turns both helped to show me it was possible and allowed me to work out some of the techniques I’m gonna list below. (Also just use these videos for inspiration for loads of other cool strapless tricks)
Start with smaller jumpers, if you boost too high it’s hard to keep the kite in the correct position ready for landing, which leads on too…
Kite position – when you send the kite be sure you don’t let it go any further back than 12 which is important when it comes to landing…
Landing – as you get close to landing, sheet in and pull hard with your back hand to loop the kite. You need it ideally at 12 so it loops in the middle of the powerzone so you can keep weight over the tail of the board. If the kite has drifted behind you, then when you loop it you’ll get a bigger loop which pulls you backwards and it will be hard to keep weight over the board. And be patient with that loop, leave it as late as possible.
Board grab – this was key for me – it’s easy to grab up near the nose of the board but if you can grab the rail around where your front foot is, you’ll find it easier to control the board in the air and it will make the landing easier…
Hold the rail and keep holding as you land, get all your weight back over your back leg but push down with your front hand on the rail to keep the board flat. Prolonging this grab made such a huge difference and allowed me to land with speed and was the main reason I could keep foiling out of the jump without touching down.
Now all of this is my first thoughts after three days of practising and trying to improve my consistency – I’m sure my technique will change as I better understand what is happening and particularly as I jump higher but for these smaller, first jumps it seems to be working for me.

What I think is really worth considering for everyone – some tricks/techniques just take time, for me a year of on and off practice, but you won’t ever get it if you don’t try the first one, fail and then start your progression and 1000’s of attempts may just be necessary."
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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby robclaisse » Fri Jan 03, 2020 7:37 pm

Glad you found it useful - I really had a light bulb moment the other day and was amazed how it all came together. But big props to Stephane and César because their two videos - Back to Brazil and Twist and Turns (linked elsewhere in this thread) - allowed me to study some of the details and make a big step forward then work back and analyse what I was doing with each miss and compare to the feeling when I got one right. It really is exciting learning all these new tricks, even if they take a year of practice to get there!!

Today's goals are to get my body and legs inverted over my head and then get the landing! I'll report back if I have any successes :-D
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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby jumptheshark » Thu May 14, 2020 2:24 pm

Wanted to bump this thread and see if there are any new clips out there.

Have had a handful of sessions on the Peak4 5m and contrary to initial concerns getting this kite, its fantastic for strapless airs. Really easy to have the kite where I want it, but also to air without kite lift. Much easier to properly time the moment of lift to landing. With LEI kites I tended to try and double pump the lift. One for the hop and again for landing. This sort of short changed that second lift and I would land much harder. The Peak gets you to do a lot more riding without kite power, so it was easier to shed the impulse to send the kite on take off like a normal kiteboarding air, and preserve that one moment of sheet in/redirect power simply for landing. Makes for a nice improvement in overall success rate. Riding away from 9/10 and missing the landing when only when going decidedly bigger. The small stuff is now reliable and now working on clean grabs. Super stoked with this latest bit of progression. Airs in either directions are developing their own nuance, with a bit of a foil whip or flick that is different for either heel side or toe side set ups.

Where I started with relatively straightforward pops straight up and down. Now the foil itself follows a more arced and directional path with a much less flat re entry. Last year when learning to take off and try and soften the landing, I would pop going up a piece of chop and simply travel a straight line over the back and try to land the foil pretty flat on the back side of the wave, still headed in the same slightly upwind direction. That was a good first step, but the technique has evolved.

Instead of a straight line path in the air, I have more success with an arced path to a downwind landing direction. Still heading up the wave face for a popped take off, but instead of intending a path in the air straight over the back, I now pop with the intent of looking for a landing spot down the frontside of the the same wave face. So, there is a slight change in take off direction with more in air redirecting the foil to land heading downwind with a more of a slice. Feels nicer than the Up and Plop that I was working on last year. The take off is still upwind, but like a strapless air on a surfboard, the direction of the pop is "off the lip" with a redirect of the nose by pushing out the tail. Feels killer. It seems easier to position the peak really deep in the window to facilitate the "off the lip" feel of the move.

Translated pretty quickly to toe side, where I was already instinctively redirecting the foil downwind after breaches. This one can be done without actually airing, so the foil breeches and just sort of slides along the crest of a wave before submerging. This was basically a natural byproduct of being more tentative with the pop on toe side, but its a legitimately fun thing to do in its own right and an easy way into airs on that tack. Eventually with a bit of amplitude, the toe side air with proper grab will be pretty sick.

The only issue so far with peaks is my hesitancy to work into back roll airs. Started into the mechanics of it last day on a 5m LEI and dropped it a couple of times, so rotations and potentially eventual kite loops will have to be figured out on the LEI's.

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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby robclaisse » Thu May 14, 2020 2:36 pm

I've been off the water the last 8 weeks with lockdown here in the UK, so not jumping recently :-( but the forecast looks good the next week.
I was getting a lot more consistent with my grabbed airs with more height back in March but popped, non-grabbed, jumps were harder on the landings and at my size not great for the board or foil! Interested to see a video of your revised technique @jumptheshark and see how that might translate to LEIs.

I'm keen to get back rolls figured out this summer but also grabbed body rolls, which I think could be pretty cool for a jump transition (basically this but the foil being out of the water - tried one by mistake back in March and crashed but can see the path to it). Also, a fun one, popped jump, landing sitting on the board - got close on that before, just jump, grab the board and then bring it under your bum, land and try and ride away :-D

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Re: Strapless hydrofoil airs, where to start

Postby jumptheshark » Sat Sep 19, 2020 2:43 pm

Time for an update.

What a season! The airs were put on hold a little, but eventually came back to the forefront for me. I'll look back on this season as the summer I switched to Peak4s... Best move ever.

I was worried Peaks wouldn't be very good for jumping. Like a lot of things, I was wrong. Turns out the Peaks are super comfy for the type of airs I'm pursuing. Early on after getting a 4m and having a few really powered sessions on it, I realized I had never actually tested the boost of these kites. I was getting to know the lift for softening landing in my small little airs, but had never pulled the trigger hard like you would with straps. Hit the gas, loaded up, pulled the trigger and left the foil behind. The 4m ripped me up to a respectable 8-9m of height, not a lot of glide, but landing was plenty soft and controlled about 30m downwind of my foil. Not unlike most med aspect LEI kites in the 7-8m range. Was a bit of an eye opener. Since then, have picked up a 3m and spent some quality time on it. Getting used to the 3m sharpens kite control big time. Extremely helpful in landing strapless. Suffice to say, IMO Peaks are ideal for busting strapless on foil. In the sweet spot they are perfect. Overpowered It's easier to work on airs. Underpowered its better to just ride swell.

I've come to the realization that you can throw so many different types of strapless airs. Straight up and straight down was were I started, using the kite only on landing. That has broadened out into all kinds of variations. Airs with a little more travel that are very much up face, landing back down face/wind trying to get as much tail whip into it as possible. Long travel airs at speed where air resistance against the board is much more relevant, and the classic combo of the two that combines a bit more height and distance and uses the kite for take off and landing just like on a tt. Those require a good grab and put more load on the foil when landing. All of them feel a lot bigger in my head than they are, but I'm throwing between 20 and 40 a session and foiling out of most. The success rate has gone way up even if the amplitude has not! The back loop landings have morphed into a much more stalled use of the kite during the air than at the beginning of the season. I now pull the trigger more and keep the kite back behind me providing some lift before pulling it into the back loop on landing. These have been my best airs so far. Probably about 3-4m of height on good ones, 5-8m of travel with a nice looped straight downwind foiling exit that pretty much act as a transition riding out toe side. It's almost routine to throw them in at the end of a good heel side wave ride. Definitely my main air. Not enough tail whip in it yet.

Second fave is the long distance air used to scrub excess speed. Bit counter intuitive to jump when things get on the edge of control, but popping up at high speed has great board pressure on your feet and doesn't really need a grab. Landing with more forward speed also makes it easier to get a smooth entry and avoid touch down. Fun gust management. Landing is very much all rear foot until the foil engages and then you can weight the front foot. I suspect this is slightly different on different foils and has a lot to do with stab size.

The airs of my dreams did not come this season. True sideway yanking, fully grabbed kite loop airs are possible and someday someone is going to make them look super sick. Beyond that, grabbed front or back end over rolls are also likely possible. Just like back in the day on TT and then SB, my imagination has all manner of stalled, looped and boned out airs in the 2-5m height range.

I have begun to get enough amplitude at times that I worry more about the loads on my foil. So far the Lift 170 has been a dream and shows zero signs of strain, but with carbon I think its likely fine until it isn't ! Definitely ever more conscious of timing kite lift to landing, and like most airs, you know a bit ahead of time when you've screwed it up so have the option of kicking the foil away.

Anyway, throwing new kites into the mix has spread out the learning curve, but only slightly and in the end has me dreaming up moves I hadn't pictured last year.

Still a really long way to go.

TLDR: Strapless airs are still awesome with Peaks. Still really enjoying the learning curve. Have a few new types of airs and landings as apposed to just one last season. Their still in their infancy, but the potential for sickness is definitely there. Hope to see more and more of it out there.
Last edited by jumptheshark on Sat Sep 19, 2020 4:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.


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