How To WIN When Learning to Efoil


Simply put, if you marry a surfboard, an airplane wing, and an electric motor, you end up with an efoil. Why is that a good idea? If you want to fly, with you in control as the pilot, there is a long list of things that you need to do and time/money that you need to spend. If you want to surf, you need to live close enough to surf breaks to get you on a board regularly. 

With an efoil, you can fly and surf at the same time on any body of water that is at least chest deep.

Foiling is an amazing evolution to the sport of surfing. The most advanced surfers, stand-up paddle boarders, windsurfers, and kite boarders are making the leap to foiling. When they take this step, they quickly learn how complex it can be, and how thrilling it is.


To win in foiling, I have heard it recommended that you try to foil while being towed behind a jetski, or try to efoil. Both are excellent options because you can control the speed.

So if you get the chance to efoil, you should know a few things to help you to win in this new sport.

  1. Wear a helmet. You will crash many times, and if you are a surfer or snowboarder, you will fight to regain your balance. This only makes the crash much worse. Wearing a helmet will save you from taking a shot in the noggin from the board, the mast, or the foil. Contact with any of these three could be game over if you don't wear a helmet.
  2. Control your speed. The best part about an efoil is that the throttle is in your hand, literally. A steady speed, or steady acceleration under your control allows for a stable ride. A stable ride enables your brain to figure out how to foil. It is not like surfing or snowboarding. Many of the natural tendencies in these other sports work against you in foiling. Keep the speed steady, and you will enjoy a faster learning curve.
  3. The foil controls the ride, so you need to control the foil. If you can control the foil (not the board), you will control the ride. At any speed above slow, the board's rails no longer turns the board. The foil turns the board. This is easier to understand if you see the foil as a set of wings on an airplane. As long as you have some forward speed, the lift, drag, thrust, and weight forces come into play. These forces control the ride; left and right turns, up and down action. Think of the left and right turns with your shoulders as if your arms were wings on a plane. As you lower your left shoulder, raise your right shoulder. Think of shifting your weight toward your back foot to create upward lift, and shifting your weight toward your front foot to create downward lift to land back on the water. When you are evenly balanced between front and back feet in a neutral position, you will maintain altitude or the height you are above the water.
  4. Don't fight the fall. Really, don't fight it. Everytime, I mean everytime that I fought the fall, the crash was much worse. I have the bruises to show you, but I'd rather not. Take your falls early and often, and slowly increase your speed. The higher your speed, the more stable you become, but also the bigger the fall. So don't fight the fall at low speeds, and you will be much happier at the high speeds.

The bottomline is that EVERYONE CAN FLY when using an efoil. I fully believe that if you can control your trigger pull on the hand controller, and you can stand reasonably balanced between your two feet, you can fly on an efoil in your first lesson. In order to have full confidence to control the flight of an efoil, you will likely need additional time on the efoil. It is the thrilling sensation that we are chasing when we engage in sports. Flying on an efoil will give you that sensation many times over in your first ride, and every ride thereafter.


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