How to Punt


Sequence: Sharpy

Everyone wants to get air. Trouble is it’s not as easy as Taj makes it look. Hopping about like an epelectic frog ain’t a good look, and neither is hanging around pulling a double rail grab when you’ve left you’re board in the whitewater ten feet behind! To save your blushes this spring Olli Adams takes us through the basics of punting.

Usually two to three foot waves are best because any bigger and the explosion from the white wash makes it harder to stick ’em. But the bigger the wave the higher you get! Light on shore winds are more favourable for punting because the wind gets under your board and sticks it to your feet. The wind also sends you out towards the shore which is where you want to go. Off shore winds are an absolute bain because your board always does a disappearing act from under your hoofs mid air.

Wait for section that has a pulse heading towards you, this acts like a ramp. It’s also way easier to punt a section peeling towards you than a folding section. Get loads of speed. You don’t want to do a deep bottom turn because you’ll run out of speed by the time you reach the lip and then the only thing you’ll be doing is the floppy badger! You need to keep a reasonably high and even line, then drop down to the middle of the wave by doing a small pump just before you launch.

When you launch, it is sort of like doing an ollie on a skateboard in that you have to shift your weight from your back foot to your front foot, but the movement isn’t quite as drastic. You need to pick your spot from way down the line and you need to wait until just the right moment; when the lip is vertical. If the lip is too flat you’ll sail off the back, and if it’s already coming down it’ll smash you and you’re history. A lot of the time when I see guys trying airs, they wait too long to punt and try to shift their weight after they have left the wave. You need to start pushing down on your front foot in the direction you want to go just before your tail leaves the wave.

It’s really important to keep your weight centred over your board when you take off. I find the easiest airs to land are double grabs (like the sequence) because by grabbing both rails it automatically centres you over your craft.

Spotting your touchdown is different for different airs. On straight airs I try and aim for the flats (out in front of the lip), but on air reverses and other airs with spins, I try and aim to land on the lip and fall back down with it.

The hardest part of sticking airs is pulling the first one. Once you’ve sussed one you tend to stick loads. Of course it doesn’t help when people soap your wax (Blinky you little bastard! Don’t think I’ve forgotten. You’ll get yours!)

Now get out there and punt you little frothers!