Mastering Wing Handling Techniques

Mastering Wing Handling Techniques: From Land to Water

In our previous article: “5 Essential Tips for Smooth Wing Foil Board Progression”, our second tip was to “Get Comfortable with Your Wing.” As you continue your journey into the exhilarating world of wing foiling, mastering wing handling will be essential for success on the water. In this second installment of our series, we'll delve into the crucial skills of handling the wing on land and transferring those skills to the water. By mastering these fundamental techniques, you'll build a solid foundation for your wing foiling journey and set yourself up for success on the water.


1. Handling the Wing on Land:

Before taking to the water, it's essential to familiarize yourself with the wing and practice handling it on land. Start by laying the wing flat on the ground and familiarizing yourself with its components: leading edge, trailing edge, handles, and strut. Practice gripping the handles with both hands and experiment with different hand positions to find what feels most comfortable and stable for you. Use different stances such as from your knees, on your feet in your dominant stance, and also in a switch stance.


Get familiar with how to power up the wing by pulling the wing towards your body with your back hand only, and how to release the power. Work on switching your hands amongst the handle options on your wing. The leading edge should have a handle to allow you to flag out the wing which releases all the power from the wing.


Next, practice moving the wing through the air by walking along the beach. Maintain control and stability. Start with small movements, gradually increasing the range of motion as you gain confidence. Focus on keeping the wing stable and level, resisting the urge to overcorrect or jerk the wing abruptly. Remember to use your entire body, including your core and shoulders, to generate smooth and controlled movements.


You will want to ensure that the lower tip of the wing doesn’t hit the ground. If it does, the correction is a simple punch with your back hand towards the wing.


As you become more comfortable with basic wing handling on land, challenge yourself with different scenarios, such as changing wind directions or gusty conditions. By practicing in various conditions, you'll develop the adaptability and resilience needed for success on the water. By moving your hands along the strut, you will become familiar with the location of each handle.


2. Handling the Wing on a Floating Board:

Transitioning from land to water introduces a new set of challenges and considerations for handling the wing effectively. Begin by paddling out to deeper water on your foil board, ensuring the wing is fully inflated and ready for use. Position yourself on the board in a kneeling or standing position, holding the wing with both hands.


Practice maintaining control of the wing while balancing on the board. Focus on keeping the wing stable and steady, using your body weight to counteract any shifts in wind or water conditions. Pay attention to your stance and posture, keeping your feet shoulder-width apart and your knees slightly bent for stability. Your board should be level and your wing should be over your head. To start moving the board, lower your lead arm, but do not let the wing touch the water.


As you gain confidence, experiment with moving the wing through the air while riding the board. Start with small adjustments, such as changing the angle of the wing or adjusting its position relative to your body. Practice coordinating your movements with the wind and waves, maintaining balance and control at all times.


To steer the board, try “squeezing” your back foot towards your back hand. Don’t actually move your foot, but twist your hip and knee like you are squeezing the space between your foot and your hand. This will draw the tail of the board towards the wing, and shift the nose of the board slightly upwind. Your goal is to start riding forward at a 90-degree angle to the wind, or better.



Mastering the art of handling the wing on land before going to the water is a crucial step in your journey to becoming a proficient wing foiler. By honing these fundamental techniques, you'll develop the skills and confidence needed to navigate the challenges of wing foiling with ease and grace. Stay tuned for the next installment of our series, where we'll explore further skills and maneuvers to elevate your wing foiling experience to new heights.


PRO TIP: Don’t plan on getting onto foil until you are able to consistently power up the wing, and steer the board 90-degrees to the wind.

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