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Surfing 101 : Le Guide Ultime pour les novices

Les différentes Shapes

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Mini Malibu

Conditions idéales : Small to Medium surf for beginner-intermediate levels.

Choosing a surfboard shape is all about compromise, and the perfect example is the funboard. You can consider the funboard as an “in-between”, halfway between the longboard and the fish. They should be the “next step” for a beginner surfer who has spent enough time practising on a longboard, but who is not ready to jump on a fish or a shortboard. These surfboards are about 6.5 – 8.5 feet long, with a wide, round shape.

Longboard

Conditions idéales : Very small waves (1-2 feet). Some experienced surfers also enjoy riding them in bigger conditions.

These 8-12-foot sticks are the best option if you want to be able to surf year-round. Because of their size, great floatation and glide, they make tiny 1-2 feet days much more fun.

These 8-12-foot sticks are the best option if you want to be able to surf year-round. Because of their size, great floatation and glide, they make tiny 1-2 feet days much more fun.

Shortboard

Conditions idéales : Good, powerful and clean conditions in medium to medium-big waves.

Shortboards are designed for maximum performance in good to epic surf conditions. These designs should only be ridden by experienced surfers. Riding shortboards without the proper skill level is a very common mistake that slows down the progression of intermediate surfers across the world.

Fish

Conditions idéales : Small to Medium surf. Great for mushy, weak waves on which you still want to have fun, but can also be very fun to ride in good conditions with some wave size.

You can recognize this design with its big, wide nose, and a wide shape that gradually gets narrower towards its swallow tail. Most fishes are ridden with twin fin or quad fin set ups. These boards have more volume and less rocker than typical shortboards, making them a great option for weak or mushy waves.

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Les configurations d'ailerons

Fins are important because they are the device that gives you stability, control and direction on your surfboard. They help you maintain your speed and “cut” through the water, in a way that would be impossible on a finless board.

There are many different fin setups. Here we will focus on the 4 most popular ones, analyzing their strengths, weaknesses and the type of conditions they excel in.

Twins

Twin fins became popular at the end of the 1970s and at the beginning of the 1980s when Mark Richards started to use twin-fin “fishes” to win four consecutive World Championships. At that time, the world discovered how twin fins offered extra manoeuvrability and speed, giving Mark Richards a competitive edge to beat other competitors riding single fins.

Quad

The four-fin set-up gets a little bit of both the characteristics of the twin fin and the thruster set-up. Quads can be great in small surf, especially if the rear fins are further up on the surfboard and closer to the rails. This helps surfers generate speed, even in weak waves, and helps to do quick turns, a bit like with a twin fin would, but with extra control.

Thruster

This is currently the most popular fin set up for most surfers, from beginners to experts. Frustrated with the fact that twin fins wouldn’t “hold” enough in bigger waves, Australian Simon Anderson came up with the idea of a three equal-sized fin set-up in 1980.

The extra fin placed in the middle at the back of the tail provides more stability and manoeuvrability. The thruster setup has played a huge part in the evolution of high performance surfing, making many radical manoeuvres possible.

Single

Single fins are most commonly found on longboards. The original fin setup is considered outdated by some, but it is still appreciated by others because it brings a different feel while riding the wave. They are usually long and wide, big enough to provide control over the surfboard on its own.

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La carène

Surfboard shapers design different shapes of bottom contours for various types of surfers and different surfing conditions. Surfboards usually have different bottom contours from nose to tail. For example, a board could have a “single concave” on the nose, a “flat” bottom in the middle and a “belly” at the tail. This depends on how the shaper wants the water the be channelled under the board.

Convex bottom

Convex bottom contours, like the “vee” or the “belly”, are designed to help rail to rail transition. They act as a pivot point in the middle, providing extra responsiveness to initiate turns. This shape will slow you down, as the water flow is directed outside the rails.

Flat Bottom

Flat parts of a surfboard’s bottom are great for planing on the surface. This makes it a good bottom for beginners because they can surf further down the shoulder without losing too much speed. Advanced surfers will find that too much flat area makes it hard to stay in control in powerful waves. It’s easier to lose control and slide off when the water flow isn’t contained between therails. Flat sections can be a good thing on small wave boards, providing speed potential in weaker waves.

Concave Bottom

Concaves are optimal for surfers looking for speed and performance in good surfing conditions. Most shortboards will have a certain type of concave bottom contour because it is the best shape to channel the water between therails. Containing the water under the surfboard, instead of releasing it from the edges, creates lift and reduces drag between your board and the water. In addition to providing speed, concaves make your rails “stickier”, which helps when you want to bury the rail during a bottom turn or a huge carve on theshoulder.

Le rocker

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