Carve Jibe Anonymous

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Mike G.
Posts: 132
Joined: Mon Dec 16, 2002 12:31 am

Carve Jibe Anonymous

Post by Mike G. »

"Hello, my name's Mike and I can't carve jibe"

There; that feels better to get that out in the open.

Now that I've stated the obvious, for those of you who've cracked
this particular nut, was there a single break through for you?
What got you over the hump?

Basically I can keep it on the carve til somewhere during the
sail flip.
dave t
Posts: 276
Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 12:23 pm
Location: apple valley

Post by dave t »

It's all about speed and having your weight in the right place on the board.
If I don't get my weight forward, it doesn't seem to make any difference how fast I enter the jibe, the nose comes up and slams on the brakes.

It works the same way but to a lesser degree if you don't have the speed in the beginning. Even if you get forward, pitching the board over drags you off the plane.

So, you've got to get speed, (bear off if you need more), and get your weight forward (lean your body towards the mast and load the boom with your front hand).
(This is where I shank the jibe if I'm not thinking and it sounds like the spot you loose it also.) When you let go for the flip concentrate on staying in that position (I feel like I should drop back to balance the sail I just let go of.....Don't) and maybe load your front foot a little more. I think when I started having a more aggresive body position through the whole jibe is when I started planing through.
Jim N
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Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 10:34 am


Post by Jim N »

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Joined: Sat Oct 26, 2002 10:06 pm
Location: Here, Now

Post by Tighe »

The carve jibe is one of the coolest aspects of windsurfing. When you can rip a smooth one and power out as fast as you powered in there is nothing like it.

Now before you take anything I say with any assumed crediblility, I must warn you of two things. I jibe very uniquely. It works for me. Secondly, I am old school and I've seen techniques written up in the mags that speak about a jibe that is far from mine. I don't know if there is a right or wrong way, I think the main goal is to find a method that is fun and keeps you planing through the move.

Ok, here's how I start, which is the most unique aspect of my jibe. I take my front foot out and place it in front of the front footstrap a bit toward the center of the board. I do this while still locked in the harness and triangulating all the forces.

Then I start to head off the wind. Depending upon how powered I am determines how far off the wind. If I am very powered up I won't head off all that much. The main thing is to get as much speed as you can handle. Be sure to sheet in as you bear off.

Now I take my rear foot out and place it between the straps closer to the leeward side of the board. Both my feet are now in line, almost on the center line of the board, each 6-8 inches further forward than before, this gives me a good solid stance on the board with the wt. further forward. This is critical cause as you reach the windspeed downwind, all the force pushing the mast down and keeping the board trimmed flat and planning will disappear. The speed and your weight distribution will be what keeps it flat. If you find yourself wheelying off a plane, you're either not going fast enough or your wt is too far back.

So back to the jibe. I'm heading off the wind, looking for a spot to jibe, I start to roll my weight up onto the board, keeping my knees bent and driving them forward. Remember your goal is to keep that board flat. It's like there were two people riding your board, one on front and you on the back. The one in front is getting off. You need to compensate and rolll your weight forward.

Now since my stance isn't that dissimiliar to a skateboard stance I crank my turn, leaning into the turn, looking downwind at where I am going not down at my rig. My gear is in close to me, and as the sail goes lifeless, I flip the sail, not disrupting the my balance or my carve.

Depending upon the wind strength I choose the tightness of my carve and my exit route. Rarely am I heading back parallel to the line I just came in on. I usually am heading downwind. By heading off the wind first and heading downwind leaving the turn, I've now only done a 90 degree turn, which allows me to hold more speed and not kill the flow. Once powered up again I can start heading back across the wind. I think if you were to look at my path from above it would look a bit like a drawn out diamond. Wind strength determines the thickness of the diamond. Once powered I then switch my feet back.

Once again, I jibe goofy. I like the skateboard feel of having both feet out. I have done this kind of jibe in conditions all over the world without a problem. The main thing to focus on is getting speed and keeping that board flat by rolling your weight forward and through the turn.

The other thing that helped me was to practice the sail flip so I could do it in my sleep. That allowed me to focus on the carving of the board. Just through a boom on a mast and practice on shore, over and over. No sail needed. There is an instant in every turn where the rig will feel just as light.

The other thing that helped me was to visualize the move in my head. Even though it was many years ago I still remember the night before my first jibe and how somehow it all just came together in my head...and then on the water the next day.

Jim's suggestion was a good one. The new breed of instructors have refined the technique to make it much easier to learn.

I hope some of this was helpful. The carve jibe is a blast. Keep with it and you'll be rewarded.
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Location: St. Paul

Post by adamel111 »

One of the best ways to learn technique is to watch. Next time it blows take some time off to watch the sailors that have the carve jibe down and, if possible, get some video of yourself doing carve jibes. Of course, having the technique broken down into words is a big help as well.

To gain as much speed as you can and to make your jibe efficient you should be headed on a broad reach, i.e. pointed more downwind than perpendicular to the wind. This maximizes your speed and ensures that you won't be losing power from initiating your carve from a higher angle to the wind. I normally bear off and then pick my spot to jibe. This is particularly handy in choppy waters, waves, and crowded areas.

When I know where I am going to jibe I unhook shortly before I initiate my jibe. When I initiate my jibe two things pretty much happen at once. 1.) I slide my back hand farther back on my boom. 2.) My back foot comes out of the back strap and is placed on the leward rail.

You must sheet in when initiating your jibe and sliding your backhand farther back allows better control of the sail when doing so. Sometimes I believe I may even move my front hand slightly farther forward as well. Additionally, widening the distance between your hands makes it more easy to bend those knees which helps with constant rail pressure as well as pressure down through your mast to the center of your board and prevents you from doing the "table top" jibe. As for foot placement, where you put your foot on the leward rail and how much pressure you apply will determine the arc of your jibe. I usually sheet in hard and apply rail pressure at the same time. Leaning forward and bending your knees keeps everything smoothe. Standing up leads to bouncy turns and your board snapping into the wind at the exit. You should also be looking towards the exit of your turn. Looking down at your rig or straight ahead will not allow your body to rotate as it needs to. Whatever your head does, your body will follow.

Now that have initiated everything correctly and are looking to the exit of your turn you should feel your board carving past downwind. If you are getting stuck going downwind, you need to sheet in harder and keep constant rail pressure longer. If you do things correctly you should feel the board carve past downwind and towards the angle at which you want to take off in. Simultaneously, your sail will have that "weightless" feel. I don't force my sail flip at all, the sail pretty much naturally stays in its place and it is the board and me that rotate. When the board is carving to the angle at which you want to take exit in (on a broad reach again) you will feel the need to switch your feet.

I switch my feet as my sail is flipping around, bringing my foot that was in my front strap out and moving that foot in front of my other foot. When it is really windy, the foot that is coming out of the strap doesn't necessarily move in front of the other foot. However, as I grew up perfecting my jibes in marginal winds on an IMCO I picked up that technique as it keeps your board flat and weight forward for the most effecient exit in marginal winds. When it is windy enough the foot that is being switched normally ends up getting placed on the centerline just in front of hte back straps.

Once my feet are switched I should be at the angle I want to exit at and I bend my knees to lower my center of gravity and grip the boom to be ready for the potential pull on the other side (or to pump out of the jibe if I lost too much speed). If I haven't quite carved around far enough I have to keep some pressure on the rail. It is important to keep pressure on the rail as you are switching your feet and flipping your sail. I see some people "hop" when they switch their feet. Not having your weight on the board creates a risk of it popping out of hte water. New boards may be more forgiving, but I can tell you from experience older boards like the Mistral Energy will not tolerate such a move. Some sailors choose to flip their sail a bit later, holding onto it as they switch their feet in order to maintain better balance. If done right, you can easily sail out of a jibe clew first and then flip sail without losing much speed.

I hope that my long winded explanantion helps a bit. Remember, jibing is about commitment and feel. You can't go lackadaisically into a jibe. You have to apply rail pressure, bend your knees, and lean into the turn. Really smooth sailors can make it look effortless and like they are barely moving. However, over exaggerating your motions will help with yoru technique and ensure that you are doing things properly. The more jibes you do, the better you will have for the "feel" or more simply put, timing. As you do more jibes you will just feel when everything needs to happen and you can adjust your timing and motions to perform drawn out carves or long arcing carves.

I will leave you with a link to US windsurfing. The nationals were held in San Fran at Crissy Field July 12-17. There is a link to a video of the downwind slalom racing held on the last day. Most competitors in the slalom heats were on sails in the mid 6 range (6.2, 6.4). The water was extremely flat due to a hard flood. The video is great because it goes in slow motion sometimes and you can watch sailors adjusting their jibe to the buoy and the other sailors around them. You can even watch Phil McGain take a digger.

Adam Anderson
Posts: 308
Joined: Fri May 09, 2003 5:06 pm
Location: Duluth

Post by Chip »

I agree with Adam - I keep my front foot in the strap as long as my legs can handle the position. For me, removing both feet disrupts my weight position too much and I end up coming out of the turn. The rest of that stuff, I have no clue - it just happens. Commitment is important as well. If you hesitate, you come out of the turn.

Eric S
Posts: 970
Joined: Tue Nov 26, 2002 2:42 pm
Location: MN, USA, Earth

Re: Carve Jibe Anonymous

Post by Eric S »

Mike G. wrote:"Hello, my name's Mike and I can't carve jibe"

There; that feels better to get that out in the open.
I read a bunch of other response to this. The instructions are wonderful! I have been working on the carve jibe this year too. For me, it's the ultimate windsurfing goal.

It's never a 100 percent thing. However, this is the way I approach it now. I am 100 percent commited to do a planing jibe UNLESS doing a non-planing jibe will work better for the current conditions.

When I first started getting around I was using the Alan Cadiz 'Top to Bottom' check list. This is from your head to your toes. Also, if you are thinking about each step you probably will not be planing through the jibe.

This stuff is about practicing your mind and incorperating solid technique.

Oh yeah, you should nab the Alan Cadiz and Peter Hart vids on learning how to jibe. These will give you good examples and drive them into your head with repeted viewings.

Peter Hart: A Turn For The Better

Alan Cadiz: Jibing with Alan Cadiz in Maui

Here's my basic stew:

1) look back from whence you came for other traffic. Don't jibe into someone even if you have right of way

2) Place your back hand further back on the boom than you normally would. You'll need leverage and control

3) Shoot downwind and unhook. Some will unhook before they shoot down wind. it's up to you. Keep the board screaming as fast as you dare.

4) Step your back foot out of the strap. Place it infront of the rear strap(s) with toes over the lee rail.

5) Say "F*c* Yo@ Muth3R fUCx34!" and carve the board as hard as you can. You will probably fall. We are trying to see how hard we can carve the board in the water.

6) ease off and see if you can flip the sail before you start saying "F*c* Yo@ Muth3R fUCx34!" while still planing on that broad reach.

7) If you have found that you have flipped the sail, Heck, flip your FEET!

You just mighta done a carving jibe.

PS: Instructions are so primitave. We've all learned to carve a jibe on our own. I owe alot of my sucess to Brian S and Mike D. they taught me the importance of getting really pissed before trying one. Thanks

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Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 3:31 pm

Post by steveb »

OK Mike you asked for it, I have the advantage over of most of you guys of having seen Mike sail and gybe. Lets start with setup, your sailing position when planing powered has really become rock solid, I've enjoyed watching you getting better and better over the last couple of seasons.
One of the other posts mentioned how important speed is, well you have the speed .
most people blow the gybe at stage one, here you go from a reaching position to initiating the gybe. Move your back hand as far back on the boom as you can , take your back foot out of the strap and place it accross the centerline between the front and rear strap ( each board has a sweet spot ....experiment), on your seatrend you want your back foot toes pointing 45 degrees towards the front of the board, on your starboard because of it's width you want your back toes pointing straight accross the board way past the centerline you'll need the leverage. lift your hips and unhook from the harness line. You need to do all of this while maintaining your speed so try not to disturb the board and move your feet gently. if you have lost some speed while in this position bear away a little off wind and pick up your speed. I'd suggest sailing along accross the lake and practice these 3 steps without loosing speed.
Once you are comfortable with this... stage 2.
Here you initiate the carve, the feeling if you do it right is you are going to be pulled (thrown) over the front of the board, if you do get thrown over the front consider it a sucess.
Here's something to practice, stand up on dry land and put one foot infront of you as though it were in your front strap, your back foot place accross the imaginary centerline of your board, now sink your butt about 3 inches so your knees are slightly bent and you flex your ankles a little, now push your pelvis forward about 6 inches keeping your shoulders directly above your pelvis, you should feel your weight go onto the balls of your feet and your heels should lift off the ground. Just for giggles move your head infront of your pelvis, you will start to fall forwards. If you let your head get infront of your shoulders and pelvis on the water you'll fall into the inside of the turn. Practice this rocking motion flexing your ankles driving your pelvis and shoulders forward. next point your front arm straight out in front of you as though pointing where you are going and imagine you are trying to pick up a heavy weight with your back hand keeping it close to your ribs. Now going into the forward position with your arms pointing and lifting,Practice this movement.
On the water you start with step one then use this rocking motion to start the initiation of the carve, if you push your pelvis forward enough your front heel should lift off the board with the underneath of the front strap being squeezed by the top of your foot, while you start the forward rock (carve) straighten your front arm so that your mast moves forward and slightly inside the turn, your back hand should pull in on the boom getting it as close to your ribs as you can. These 3 steps happen in one smooth motion.
Keep your head up looking where you are going, once you notice your board is pointing the same direction as the waves are travelling (downwind)move the heel of your front foot pivoting it towards the boards centerline, kEEP THE PREASSURE ON YOUR BACKFOOT CARVE, If upwind is 12 and downwind is 6 on an analog clock your board should by now be pointing to 5 or 7 depending on your tack. Start to let out your sail so it is a little clew first, this should start to pull you forward on the board helping you to step your back foot forward about 6 to 12 inches behind the mast on the new windward rail.
PUT YOUR WEIGHT ON YOUR HEELS, this helps finish the carve, slide your front hand as close to the mast as you can and flip your sail keeping the mast verticle or a little to windward, get low into a sitting position to catch the boom on the new tack.
Keys to sucess.
1. Initiate the unhooking, rear foot transfer and moving the backhand without loosing speed. TAKE YOUR TIME.
2. make intitiating the carve smooth.
3. Make sure the front foot is off the board during the carve, you cannot do this and lean back.
4.Pull the back hand in hard, at first it will require some oomph but as the board bears away it will be easier to hold.
5.Keep your head over your feet.
6.Start moving your front foot once you are pointing down wind (board in line with the waves), most people step too late and hold the sail too long, it will feel wrong, it will feel awkward ...suffer just do it. Remember we are not gybing the sail, we are gybing the board... the carve of the board through the turn is everything once we have the carve the sail flip is the cigarette afterwards.
7.Carve....Carve....Carve, think about it during the turn until you step your back foot forward on the new tack, "I must keep increasing the preassure on my back foot"
8. Use the sail going clew first to intitiate your forward step.

Mike .... next windy day lets Play.
Paul F
Posts: 171
Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2002 1:56 am
Location: Portland Oregon

Post by Paul F »

In the turn when you are going straight down wind the apparent wind is very low. If you are going 20mph in a 25 mph wind the wind you feel is 5mph. I like to practice the sail flip on the beach in a 5mph breeze. You stand back to the wind. With both hands on the boom lean the sail slightly windward until it will balance if you let go with both hands hands. You can then push with the clew hand and after a slight pause pull the mast hand and throw the mast to the other side. The sail will spin like a perfectly balanced top with the mast tracing a semi-cone. My goal on the jibe is to just get enough speed down wind so the sail can be balanced and lightly flipped.
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