Downwind SUP Foil Mathematics

To set expectation I have put together some SUP Foil Downwind math:

Take your AGE and add the number of Pounds you are over your college weight (age 20) and this is how many Downwind sessions you will need to get comfortable downwinding (defined as on foil ~ 50% of the time).

If you are AGE 50 and 20 Pounds over your college weight expect 70 sessions to get adept at downwinding.

Some additional factors:

  • Subtract 10 sessions If you come from a PRONE Foiling background
  • Add 20++ sessions if you have NO paddling experience
  • Subtract 10 sessions If you can flat water paddle up
  • Divide by 2 if you are in a place with GREAT bumps, meaning the Gorge or current running against the wind with good short period chop
  • Divide by 3 if you are using a Foil Drive this will cut down on your paddle ups and increase time on foil
  • Add 20+++ sessions if you are attempting to downwind in the ocean with Mixed Wind Chop and Ground Swell and cross chop
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Past performance is no guarantee of future returns.

But what do I know? I am coming from a SUP foil background 7 years with 1,500+ sessions. >50 years old, 15 lbs too heavy. We have a resident “Pro”, Kyle Pemberton, mid 30’s, graduate of the James Casey club that I am trying to tag along with who did the run below 2 days ago. Mavericks to Santa Cruz 55 miles, 30 knots of wind in 10 - 14 foot swell.

I can flat water paddle up and have been hammering the open ocean conditions but wondering if I am aging out. I figured I would share this ‘estimate’ to inform others to improve their efforts and/or to gain any other valuable feedback.

2024_04_29 Downwinder from Mavericks to Santa Cruz