San Diego, California - The Cross Bow backside turn is one that should be in everyone's repertoire as it's a really functional maneuver because of it's relatively quick execution and it's support in down-the-line surfing. Here, Sean Poynter gives us a breakdown on how to properly execute the Cross Bow backside turn on a paddle board.
1. Bottom turn with paddle on the inside
Execute a bottom turn with your paddle on your inside. This, like said in my previous tips, will help sink the inside rail and increase the turn off the bottom of the wave to make the top turn better and more on rail. The quicker you are able to come off the bottom the more powerful and on rail the top turn has potential to be.
Note: As you can see in the pictures, I didn't have much speed, so, not so much on rail.
Execute the bottom turn with your paddle on your inside. | Photo: Matty & Elena Schweitzer
2. Execute cross bow paddle positioning
This, if not already evident, is where the name of this turn largely comes from, the cross bow part. The cross bow terminology comes into play in the description of the paddle reach across from the inside rail area to the outside rail. This part of the turn, the cross bow turn, is one of the most important parts to nail a great cross bow backside turn. In this step, timing is everything and is timing in the sense so you don't execute the turn too late or too early. Executing a cross bow turn too late is the result of you executing the cross bow paddle plant too late. Being late in this step will result in you going too high up into the lip or wave face and not giving you enough time to turn to stay on the wave. Simply put, your turn will be out the back of the wave and the wave will pass you up.
The cross bow turn, it's one of the most important parts to nail a great cross bow backside turn. | Photos: Matty & Elena Schweitzer
On the other hand, you have the possibility of being too early. Performing the cross bow turn too early will result in you doing a turn at the inopportune time of the wave. With surfing, the number one thing we want to do is ride the wave to its maximum potential and harness the energy of the wave to use it to our advantage and create a more effortless ride. This is because we're letting the power of the wave do the hard work for us. When we turn too early on a wave, say in the mid-face of the wave or below that mid-face range, we miss the opportunity to connect with that energy of the wave.
Where the most power resides in these turn pockets tend to be at the top half portion of the wave face, so you want to make sure to be in that area of the wave when you're executing this turn (and really most all turns in surfing). A trick that I use to make sure I'm going to execute my cross bow turn at the right time is starting the shift of my cross bow paddle plant halfway up the wave face. It seems to work great for me.
3. Turning around your paddle and out
When pushing through your turn use your coiled body to your advantage. | Photos: Matty & Elena Schweitzer.
Now you have done the hard part with timely planting the paddle across your board into the water and now just have to push through your turn and out of it. When pushing through your turn use your coiled body to your advantage, imagine your body as a loaded spring and this unwinding is your energy release. As you unwind, pivot your board around the planted paddle, unwinding your body, pushing through your legs and into your toes and into your rail as you pour your energy into the turn. Then, slowly take the power upwards into your hips and torso as you straighten out entirely, transitioning energy into your shoulders and paddle as you finish out the entire turn, stretching fully out. Once you've uncoiled, you're ready to redirect by shifting weight back onto your heals and getting back to the energy line of the wave. Harness it!!
Were these tips helpful? Let us know in the comments below!
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