14 December 2018
A board under his feet, the wind in his face, a rush of adrenaline, and beautiful nature all around – seems like a normal day for snowboarder and HOW-TO teacher Xavier De Le Rue. But in our latest TRY TO XV video, he stands on a surfboard instead and our Proteam surfer Courtney Conlogue teaches him HOW TO get barreled.
For those unfamiliar with the lingo, "getting barreled" is when a surfer rides through a breaking wave without losing control.
Courtney and Xavier head to the Wavegarden Cove Demo Center and R&D Facility in Spain where the snowboarder catches wave after wave in an attempt to master the barrel. Though it’s not his first time on a surfboard, he does have a lot to learn.
Courtney breaks down the skill into eight tips:
1. Wherever your hand goes, your board will follow.
2. Regulate your speed by putting your back arm through the wave and moving it closer to or further from you.
3. Angle the board diagonally down the wave.
4. Avoid being heavier on your front foot.
5. Keep your feet perpendicular to the board or with a slight angle in your front foot.
6. Keep your chest facing the toe-side rail on the frontside tubes.
7. Drop down your back knee.
8. Stall the board by weighing down on your back foot.
It’s a lot to remember when you’re facing down a 3-meter wave.
“It feels so close, but the timing is so short and there are a lot of things to adjust at the same time, and then also trying to get my head wrapped around the theory...it’s really hard to put it all into practice,” says Xavier.
A few more crashes and plenty of encouraging words and shouts from Courtney, and then it clicks!
“It took so much to get the back leg in, but once it got down, he was starting to look like he could actually surf,” Courtney joked at the end of the day.
Scroll down to find this episode of TRY TO XV with Xavier.