How to learn Wing Foiling fast in 3 steps
Wing Foiling is revolutionizing water sports. It is fun, innovative and very practical or versatile: it requires little equipment (especially compared to windsurfing!), little space on the water compared to kitesurfing and it is also much less dangerous. In short, it has many advantages. And, on top of that, it is very easy to learn if you do it properly.. And that is what this article is about. Learn how to speed up the learning process in 3 stages:
- Learn to handle the sail without the foil
- Learn to go on a foil without a sail (being towed by a motor boat)
- Start flying!
Before thinking about flying on a foil, it is very important to learn how to use the wing or sail very well. The more we master the sail handling, the easier it will be for us to balance on top of the foil. This step can be shorter or longer depending on your experience in other sports. If you are a good windsurfer, for example, maybe 1 hour is enough to move on to the next step. However, if you are new to this type of sports, don’t be in a hurry! Take your time and enjoy the process!
At this stage, there are 2 exercises that you have to master before moving on to the next step:
- Wing/sail handling on land: learn how to keep the sail stable on land. Learn how to get and lose power, how to place the sail higher or lower for speed or control and learn how to prevent it from touching the water.
- Sail on a non-foil board: learn how to stay upwind, how to steer and control where you go and learn the basic turns.
Once we feel confident with these two exercises, we can move on to the next level!
And here we show exactly all you need to know about this first step:
We already control the wing on non-foiling boards and we can stay upwind. Now, before moving on to foiling boards, it helps a lot to do specific foiling sessions with the help of a power boat. It is true that it is not an essential step, but it speeds up the progression a lot. The idea is to learn to fly on a foil behind a motor boat so that later, when we start sailing with the wing on a foil board, our brain already understands the balance part.
To balance on a foil is weird at first, but it is something that you improve very quickly. The equipment you use is very important! You have to use big boards (very stable) and big foils at the beginning. Your weight and experience in windsurfing, kitesurfing, etc also have a big impact. But our advice is to always go big. As a reference, the board has to be big enough so that you can stand on it easily. We have boards up to 160 liters to start with! Nothing hinders the learning process more than using a board that is too small. And the same goes for the foils: big and stable at first (we use 2000cm2 foils for beginners in 90% of cases).
Once we know how to fly in a straight line behind a motor boat, we can move on to the next step. At this stage, you don’t need to know how to make big turns or anything like that. Knowing how to fly in a straight line in a stable way is more than enough.
It’s the moment of truth. You already dominate the sail and you already know how to balance on a foil. Now it’s time to grab a board, a foil and a wing and start enjoying!
Here the key will be learning how to get up on foil efficiently. Because now there is no boat to tow us. It will be easier if there is plenty of wind and if the wind is lighter you will have to learn how to pump properly. But once we know how to start, no one is going to stop us. Once again, the equipment will be very important: large boards and foils and plenty of sail power to start with. As you make progress, you will be able to use smaller sails, foils and boards. Watch our video tutorial for all the detailed explanations of this step:
And that’s it! You are already flying up and down. Congratulations!
And now what’s next?
Obviously there is much more to learn. The learning process is endless. The next step would be to start with the transitions. Gybing is easier first and after that you can also start tacking. Stay tuned as we will be expanding this guide and adding more tutorials on our youtube channel to cover these steps as well. See you soon!