Wingfoiling

General discussions about wingfoiling: equipment, tips, problems, where to go, where you should have been, pump safety.
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AJSpencer
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Wingfoiling

Post by AJSpencer »

Sounds like its getting quite popular. I got my wing last year but have slowly been building some other equipment and skills with windsurfing, but have a 145L Dialer, Slingshot infinity 84 wing and foil, and 5m Duotone wing ready to go by end of next week.
One question I have is: are you guys using a harness? I’ve seen some videos of people hooked in. The duotone should be easy to fit one onto the boom. Do you think its necessary?
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Post by UnusuallyLargeRobin »

Hey AJ, You won't be needing to use a harness till much further along in your progression. It's really only useful for long powered upwind reaches, where you're really trying to point and lock in the power and direction. Most of the other points of sail you want the wing free and able to manoeuvre it toward you, away from, above you, beside you. You'll be wanting to get all your basic riding skills, foil skills and wing skills down before you'll even start considering a harness. I'm at about 25 sessions and just now getting a harness line and a small hook that I can attach to my waist leash belt for those long upwind reaches from G to above Muir.
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Post by TonyT1000 »

Is there anywhere yet on the Island where someone can "trial run" wings and maybe even a foil at the same time?

I have a windsurfing & kiting background, no foil experience, many years of SUP racing/training under the belt so not a total wind sport newbie.

I live in Fairfield so in a perfect world wingfoiling at Cook St and potentially up/down winding laps there would be something to aim for.

Thanks in advance.
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Post by UnusuallyLargeRobin »

TonyT winging is so new there are very few places in the world you can demo a wing, or learn to wing. As you probably know there's little to no windsport retail, lessons or demos on the Island let alone for winging. For wingsurfing Maui is one of the few places I'm aware of pre-Covid that had lessons. I'm sure someone in the Gorge would be gearing up for that kind of thing for this season (if there is one). As an early adopter you need to watch videos, read forums and put your money down and be prepared to accept the inevitable frequent upgrades and next "must have" improvement in wings, and wing specific foils, and boards as this is such a new sport.
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Post by TonyT1000 »

Thanks, figured as much. Your advice makes total sense.

Seems to me that this sport is about as friendly a method as possible to learn basic foiling skills?
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Post by UnusuallyLargeRobin »

TonyT1000 wrote:Thanks, figured as much. Your advice makes total sense.

Seems to me that this sport is about as friendly a method as possible to learn basic foiling skills?
I would agree. You've got the wind knowledge-check, board skills - check. I would go for it on a short wide floaty SUP Foil board (6' - 6'6', 110-130 litres). At that size you'll find you can learn, be challlenged and advance with it and keep it rather than outgrow it. As a bonus you'll be able to use it for SUP Surf foiling when there's surf but no wind! You can easily putter around figuring out the wing in light days on a SUP foil board as they're wide and stable and the foil adds to stability like a keel.

For foiling, ideally get a jet ski or boat to spend a few hours tow foiling, very slow 10mph ish to figure out the foil, saves many many frustrating sessions of trying to pump onto a foil or having to go out in overly strong wind to get foiling or trying to catch waves sup foiiing, as you have no foil experience/efficiency.
You'll also want a fairly large "surf" foil for first time, relatively slow compared to kite or wsurf foils, much larger e.g. 1700-2000cm2. As your 1st foil, unless you're 200+lbs, I wouldn't go for the monster 2000+ cm2 foils as you'll quickly outgrow them.

Once you have some basic wing handling, board puttering, and tow foiling/sup surf foiling start hitting those wind days and get WING-surfing!
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Post by TonyT1000 »

Wicked advice, thanks.
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Post by nanmoo »

Windsurf foiling is the easiest - if you know how to windsurf which is really hard. Then I'd say kite foiling is still easier than wing foiling if you know how to kite. Wing foiling is the only one you can try without much experience but I personally think it's the hardest given most people are already kiters or ws-ers.
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Post by more force 4 »

nanmoo wrote: Wing foiling is the only one you can try without much experience but I personally think it's the hardest given most people are already kiters or ws-ers.
I note that the commentary on this that one of these guys has never windsurfed or kited or winged or foiled before - I think they say he's done it for 6 weeks or so? Given the company he keeps I assume he's an expert surfer already. I don't see any whitecaps, even scattered ones, a lot of the time. Unreal they can get these things going and keep them going in light conditions! (actually I think this one is part 2 in windier conditions and may not have the 6 week guy).

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nk1xivLot60[/youtube]
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Post by JL »

Nice video 8)
Thermals are good.
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Post by nanmoo »

I think that is a bit deceiving. The best students are upwind on a kite within an hour of starting. You can imagine how they'd look after 6 weeks.

Winging just allows you to "start" with very little knowledge or safety training unlike kiting or windsurfing, but it's not easier than kiting or kite foiling and you can do either of those in less wind.

It's an alternative but I really doubt it will stand as a sport on it's own for people who don't already Kite or WS. My guess is unlike BMX/Skateboard/Rollerblade you won't see a third tribe at the Liquid skatepark.
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Post by more force 4 »

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1N1Bv6ONZl4
Here's the lower wind version. It took a bit of searching to find it again. These guys are certainly making it work in less wind, and they are saying way easier than paddleboard downwinders, so I wouldn't rule it out Nanmoo. But they are already watermen with great board skills. There's also one of their videos showing beginners (no wind experience at all some of them) in a lagoon near the airport, with one guy that's pretty new already foiling through jibes. The main narrator I think has been doing it for a year though and he's still working on things like switching feet. He can do 360s on the foil with his feet in place though!
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Post by juandesooka »

nanmoo wrote:I think that is a bit deceiving. The best students are upwind on a kite within an hour of starting. You can imagine how they'd look after 6 weeks.

Winging just allows you to "start" with very little knowledge or safety training unlike kiting or windsurfing, but it's not easier than kiting or kite foiling and you can do either of those in less wind.

It's an alternative but I really doubt it will stand as a sport on it's own for people who don't already Kite or WS. My guess is unlike BMX/Skateboard/Rollerblade you won't see a third tribe at the Liquid skatepark.
I think you may be wrong on that on two fronts First, one of the main groups online focused on winging are the sup foilers and surf foilers who have no prior wind experience. Winging is seen as an extension of their wave foiling, using the wind instead of having to paddle. To some people, winging is a wind-thing, but to these people it's more a foil-thing.

These are all surfers first and surfers generally hate the wind.
It is amusing to hear these folks, as they are on fire about first time using wind for fun. I suspect a number of these folks will progress beyond winging into kiting and windsurfing once the wind bug has bitten.

Second: following a lot of online discussion about wings in kite forums (and I assume similar in windsurf forums), the vast majority of people who are already accomplished wind chasers see the wings as kooky and pointless. I agree to a point, as they are less efficient. They are little faster to rig and easier to launch than a kite in difficult launch spots. Other than that, if just flat water, you'd be better off to kite or ws. The killer app, IMHO, is wave riding: you can use wind to get in, then can get 100% depower and ride the wave independent of wind.
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Post by nanmoo »

It's hard to say but I don't have any skin in the Wing game or bias towards or against it. My observations after a month on Maui were that exactly 0% of the many-many people I saw winging were not already WS or Kiters. Most would do it before, after or between their other sessions. The warm water markets are what fuel wind sports so by extension I'd think it is the same globally. Add in my friends involved in the industry there all say it's at best an addendum to mainstream income to try and supplement the rapidly declining SUP segment and that it was easy to capitalise on with existing supply chains. They are looking at it as a higher margin add-on to push low margin boards.

SUP was different, SUP you can do anywhere, at any time and with one piece of equipment- and even it is dying. It is the new rollerblading - it will continue to persist but the high end aspect has given way to Costco and Sport Chek low end made in china Crap.
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Post by juandesooka »

That may be ... but pretty sure you aren't hanging around with the crew who are 95% surf foil focused. The online discussions are about things like having to learn to ride with the other foot forward, not just with your normal surf stance....things windsurfers and kiters take for granted.

For the newbs....if you already understand wind, then you'll find that aspect easy. Don't have the wing in front of you like a windsurf sail, if anything it's more above you than forward, kinda 45 degree angle. And rig bigger than you might expect...for something that seems like it should be about light wind, it takes way more wind than expected at the beginner stage.

While I don't think you need foil experience first, it definitely helps. Like Robin said, if you can get someone to pull you behind a boat for a while, you can learn more in an hour than your first 10 or so sessions. The steady power really helps to limit the variables you have to focus on...get the feeling of foil lift dialed in. Learning wing has a lot going on at once ... partially because of the balance needed to stand up on a small sup in wind waves.

Also a good idea to just use a sup first try. You'll end up downwind. You can also fly it on the beach to get used to it, lots of people using skateboards too.
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