Words: Alan Stokes • Photos: Sharpy
Making the most out of every wave is particularly important on our fickle shores. Keeping speed through your turns is the key to good surfing, linking with finesse is what separates a good surfer from a great surfer. Alan stokes breaks down how it’s done.
MAKE THE MOST OF IT
Surfboards have evolved to the point where every part of a wave can be ridden and progressive surfing is being pushed harder than ever, so surfers literally have a trick for every part of the wave. Growing up learning to surf in the UK can actually help your surfing if you approach it in the right way. It’s usually windy and onshore and winds are predominately south westerly. If you’re a natural footer in Cornwall like me it’s a great wind direction for practising airs. Also our waves tend to break quite far from the shore so by the time you get to the end section the wave has thrown up all kinds of lumps and bumps for you to turn on.
GET YOURSELF CONNECTED
This sequence shows how well you can transfer speed and lines from one manoeuvre to another. I’ve used the momentum that’s carried me out of the tube and applied it straight into the end section. You can see in the first few frames after the tube that I’ve tried to stay light footed and quite still. I’m just using enough rail so that I hit the end section at the correct angle to get plenty of
boost. Foreseeing what can be done ahead of you early enough is a huge advantage when choosing the right line to draw on a wave. Try to predict what is going to happen and have two or three moves that you can bust out, dependant on the way that the wave behaves.
RELAX AND FLOW
My top tip for this combination of manoeuvres would be to stay relaxed after you come out of the tube. Set your rail at a good angle to hit the end section. After you’ve boosted and you are landing the air try not to force it, just stay loose and let the board do what it wants in the air. Try to widen your stance as you rotate this will help you land with control.
EQUIPMENT AND INSPIRATION
Having the right equipment for the conditions is super important. On this wave I’m riding the Quiver Dirty Truck model. This is exactly what this board has been designed for; a shortboard that holds in the pocket but is still progressive and fast in the air. I think guys like Jordy Smith and Dane Reynolds are the best guys to watch for linking big tricks together. Those guys are really setting the
bench mark. Speed is so important in being able to surf well, it’s what stitches all the tricks and turns together. Basically the faster you can go, the bigger you can go.