Getting Up On a Foil

When you’re first starting, the boat driver will play an important role in how quickly you experience success. Once you have the board situated on your feet properly and give the signal, the driver needs to pull you slowly to your feet, then ease you up to speed. This will allow you to get proper front-foot pressure as soon as you’re on your feet. As you ease up to speed, you can shift your weight back to engage the foil.

Getting the board into proper position before the driver accelerates is one of the most important details for beginners to focus on. Because the foil acts like a large, heavy fin, if you and the board are not properly situated, you will find yourself being pulled one way and the board going the other.

Start At A Slow Speed: 4-7 MPH

Until you find a way that works better for you, the best method for starting is to use the idle speed of the boat (a very slow, gentle pull) to help push the board onto your feet. Your feet must be flat on the surface of the board with the foil as far toward the surface of the water as possible. Starting with your heels on the board is much more difficult.

When you’re first learning, be sure to apply firm front foot pressure as soon as you get up on the board. It's one of the most important details to remember. Having your body position and weight too far back is the most common reason for crashing while you’re learning to foil. Remember, the more you lean back, the more your foil will want to skyrocket out of the water.

For your first few rides, the best approach is to try NOT to foil at first. That means getting out of the water and cruising slowly with enough front foot pressure to keep the board flat on the water. You don’t need to do this for long, but it’s an important step in getting an initial feel for how the foil handles under your feet and just how subtle of movement you need to control the foil. When you’re ready, simply shift your weight back little by little and you’ll feel yourself rise out of the water.

Master Your Stance

A low, athletic stance with your knees bent, your butt down and your back slightly curved will help keep your center of gravity low and will allow you to shift your weight quickly from front to back foot to stay balanced and keep the board level. At this stage, don’t worry about what you look like. You can work on your killer style once you move on to the larger mast.

How To Fall

Go with the fall and continue to hold onto the handle - this is the safest way to practice falling when you are first learning to foil. You'll want to fall as far away from the board as possible to prevent hitting the foil, mast or board.

Other Resources

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