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Tip Tuesday - Backroll

For this week's Tip Tuesday, we are giving those of you who are intermediate riders some help and advice on how to land your first Backroll.

Have you been wanting to spice up your riding but are struggling to figure out where to start? With Instagram feeds full of advanced tricks such as KGB's, Megaloop's, and Board Off's, it can be hard to figure out how to even start doing tricks while kiteboarding. Today we will be giving you advice on how to land your first Backroll.

To start, here are some prerequisites that will make your first Backroll easier to land -

  • Boosting jump by using the movement of the kite

  • Small pop jumps without moving the kite

  • Jump transitions

If you have these prerequisites down, it will make your first Backroll a walk in the park.

There is a lot we can say about how to do a Backroll, but we are just going to stick to the basics for this post. If you would like a more in depth description, there are numerous videos on the internet that will show you step by step of how to land a Backroll. And as always, if you want some real time coaching, feel free to book a Customized Private Lesson here with us at Oregon Kiteboarding and one of our top notch instructors can help you reach your goals.

While kiteboarding, we can break everything we do down into three parts - kite, body, and board. For today's #tiptuesday we will start with the kite.

For your first Backroll, the kite movement is going to be the same as a boosting jump - moving your kite up and past twelve o'clock in the opposite direction you are traveling and then sheeting in on the bar. Once the bar is sheeted in, you will want to try your best to keep the kite from moving while you spin around three hundred and sixty degrees to complete your Backroll. Placing your hands in the center of the bar is critical to ensuring that you don't oversteer your kite to either direction. Just before you land, move your kite back toward the direction of travel to land with enough speed to ride away. If you find yourself over steering your kite to the same side every time you attempt a Backroll, try bumping the opposite hand to the middle or far side of the bar. Here is an example of what we mean -

  • You are on a Starboard tack (moving to the Right) and are therefore also spinning to the right for your Backroll. You notice that you are coming down hard and your kite is crashing to the left side of the wind window every time you attempt a Backroll. In this case, you would keep your left hand at the center of the bar, and bump your right hand closer to the far right side of your bar in order to compensate for your left hand pulling too hard while you spin around.

Over time and with practice, you will be able to keep both hands in the center of the bar.

Now for your body. During your first Backrolls, you will want to try your best to look over your front shoulder as you spin around. This will also help you spot your landing as you finish the rotation. Your legs will either be tucked up close to you, or a little bit straighter depending on if you are under or over rotating. If you find yourself not making it around all the way, try to tuck your legs up close to your body as this can help you spin a little faster. If you find yourself over rotating, try stretching your legs out a little straighter which can help slow your rotation.

Finally, let's touch on what to do with your board. The movement you should aim to accomplish with your board is a sharp and fast cut upwind. How hard and fast you cut upwind will depend on if you are under or over rotating. If you are under rotating, try cutting upwind a little bit more before you take off. If you are over rotating, cut upwind a little bit less and try to push off of the water early. Also be sure to combine the board movement with the body positioning tactics we covered in the body section above.

We wish you luck in attempting your first Backroll's. If you have been working on them for awhile, we hope that these tips help to breakdown what you are doing and get you one step closer to widening your quiver of tricks.

If you have any questions or other things you would like tips on, feel free to leave us a comment below. We look forward to hearing from you and welcome you to join the Oregon Kiteboarding family!

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