What is interesting about foiling?

To me it brings together for the first time quite a diverse set of water sports backgrounds. Attracting the interests of:

  1. Windsurf, kitesurf (sailing?) background via the introduction of a foil to those, and the wingding as a new variant, which is seemingly a nice improvement on both wind and kite: gear requirements, accessibility, safety and opening up new spots and styles

  2. Surf crew, especially in marginal areas. I think it is clear that surf foiling can be a liability in busy surf areas, and not really that useful, but for marginal areas, it is really an incredible breakthrough

  3. Downwind paddling crew
    This is the first I’ve come across the downwind scene and how big it is (outrigger, SUP, ski etc) especially in Hawaii. I’ve only ever known surf ski downwind. Super eye opening to see the possibilities here

  4. Niche / non ocean
    What I would have supposed as pretty marginal stuff like dockstart, boat foiling, tow foiling wake thieving have all proven to be massively interesting for people that maybe otherwise don’t have waves. To look at how dockstart has taken off with the older crew is certainly surprising

All this is interesting because suddenly a huge crossover of ideas, techniques, knowledge, preconceptions etc that has made the whole scene evolve really quickly.

What I would be interested in seeing is where things go competitively. I think the most interesting foil contests will be those that are uniquely competitive because of the foil, rather than just recreating a contest from an existing discipline + foil
(The wing races have a pump section for example)

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The wing race course could be more interesting when containing elements like “do 10 laps around a small island” and then continue ; ) Haven’t tested it with more people riding at the same time yet, would be even more fun if you’d have to choose the best tactics based on the traffic I think.

That could be fun, though I’m thinking more along the lines of things that are specific to foiling :laughing:

I had an experience today catching small waves and then using the small waves to pump out to a much bigger wide section. That in my mind is a pretty novel way to ride waves. Linking waves maybe loses it’s novelty once the whole lineup is just people lapping for hours on end!

That’s an interesting thought, how foiling is opening up possibilities beyond the surf. There’s a lot of water inland to play in, just if you have the right toys. Winging is the easiest and most versatile wind chasing device yet, opens up a lot of potential that is otherwise not quite doable.

Efoil is the latest in my serial foil obsessions, has opened up a lot of fun days on the water. Flat water the novelty wears off pretty fast, but add any kind of waves and it’s magic. Spent the summer wake thieving in the harbour … so places without surf, if there’s boats passing by, there’s fun potential. Of course, if I could dock start, maybe I wouldn’t need an efoil … doh!

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So glad I started wing foiling, but now my mind is swirling with foiling options… wing, sup, tow in, downwind, prone surf, tow behind, efoil… I’m hooked. Living in Hood River has me thinking of all the options. :stuck_out_tongue:

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Maybe it is because the best of foiling spots is still to be discovered?
What would that look like?
I imagine wedging chip in waves carrying you out to a big open face carve wave

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Rad! We have a break with a giant rock, waves break off it for decent surf takeoffs. But at high tide, it is great foiling, as the wave will just barely break along it momentarily, just enough to get up, then the inside of the rock is walls without white water, a foil playground.

My last session there, the waves were wrapping around the rock and coming in at a right angle on either side. They would form a wedge like your photo, and you could bank off one wave to the other like a natural half pipe, but moving toward the beach, maybe 50m distance. Freak of nature, blew my mind! And back to thread topic: it would only be doable for foilers. Unrideable with regular surf craft.

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I would be interested to see the top speed achieved by a foiler without assistance (ski, wing)
ie must paddle into the first wave, then link to faster and faster swells until? I guess the setup for this will require quite a specific grower type wave…

Generally like the idea of these big long expedition type runs

This was an epic clip too, very cool to watch it unfold

And now we can throw skimboarding into the mix to

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As a new foiler in Hood River (wing thus far)… the feeling of flying over the water with no noise, is what makes me frothy. Cant wait to explore other forms and places.

Foil for me is a exciting new experience that has been a way to actually get me excited again to drive to the beach. I have a surf review platform that I have been doing for a few years, and some would think that surfing all these different boards would be an amazing experience. But it has actually led to me not enjoying my time in the water as much. So when I became a beginner at something at 41 not only was the excitement of flying the foil so fun but also learning something again. I haven’t surfed in probably a little longer then a month and I am not stopping my review channel but I am looking forward to brining the foil out more. To me surfing a foil is a mix between skating a bowl and snowboarding. Although I am not even close to carving a foil all I want to do is advance so I can turn a one foot day into a cruisy skate park. The frictionless feel under your feet is insane meaning the idea of surfing the foil and not the foil board. Not feeling the texture of the surface but feeling the turbulence underneath or lack of. I have noticed a video game style language being associated with foiling too. Level up, cheat codes, and other sayings I can’t recall. But if you kinda think about it every wave you catch you are attempting to link to another wave and then surf it and then link to another wave. You have to constantly be looking at the next move in order to complete the task at hand. Every wave has another set of obstacles that your brain and body has to adjust to in order to keep momentum. What other activity can you say at least in a stand up situation where you are can change the coarse and make your own. My productivity at work is up, my outlook on life is more positive and I am exercising more because I know if I work out I will most likely progress faster. Anyway I am just super excited I suppose foil brained all that verbiage.

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hehe, if you’re like everyone else, prepare to see some dust gather on your regular boards. Not that surfing isn’t fun, it’s just that you have jumped onto a learning curve where facing and overcoming a series of daily challenges makes it “best day ever” over and over. That creates a hunger that makes everything else seem kinda “meh” in comparison.

So, a big part of what makes foiling is interesting is virtually everyone getting into it is using it as a side hustle from another sport, and seeing massive increases in functionality … like someone added a jet pack and put you on a frictionless rail. As a regular intermediate, you can do stuff that you thought was only pro dream-land.

That Byron video blows my mind. I can’t pump well enough to take full advantage. But my efoil would be a 90 minute orgasm.

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Well and the cool part is whereas with surfing the band of conditions where it is possible to have a ‘best day ever’ session is super narrow and concentrated at the top, the band with foiling is much wider, so you have so many more opportunities to have one of those really rewarding sessions. Add the growing number of foiling disciplines you can get into, and the band gets even wider.

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Growth rate and best day frequency are huge, but also here the crew is still small, which creates a camaraderie. Yesterday some surfer was yelling, because we’re all wearing hoods, at me when I paddled out:” you’re trying foiling?” and I got ready to have another explanatory conversation, but when he showed me his foil I realized he was saying “I’m trying foiling!” I was psyched to see another foiler that I didn’t already know!

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