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PeconicPuffin



Joined: 07 Jun 2004
Posts: 1720

PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2010 1:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

swchandler wrote:
I guess I won't make the cheerleading squad with my kind of outlook.


I'll be on a cheerleading squad with you...you're as enthusiastic a windsurfer as anyone here, judging by your posts. But I'm not making any silver bullet commercials with you.

Smile

May we all get some wind this weekend.

_________________
Michael
http://www.peconicpuffin.com
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jjcrf250



Joined: 15 Jul 1995
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 8:12 am    Post subject: Go to Aruba! Reply with quote

My boyfriend then (and now my husband) tried to interest me in windsurfing on his old gear on a gusty lake in cold water, and he tried to be my instructor. Not very successful. I did some research and suggested we go somewhere on vacation where I could expect steady strong wind and warm water. We went to Aruba and we both took lessons. After one week he had nailed his jibes and I was planing on a 100L board in my front foot strap and I could "beach" start in chest deep water. Now this was fun! And 15 years later we are both still planning our vacations around windsurfing.

I would strongly recommend taking lessons in a place where the learning conditions are good. I would invest in the lessons, rentals and travel before buying gear. But I am not a patient person and I needed to experience the thrill side of the sport before I was ready to put in the work side.

You may be more patient than me and enjoy being out on the water figuring things out for yourself on your own gear -- that is great. Just remember, if things are getting frustrating don't give up, there are other paths to success!
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 4569

PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 9:18 am    Post subject: Re: Go to Aruba! Reply with quote

jjcrf250 wrote:
I am not a patient person and I needed to experience the thrill side of the sport before I was ready to put in the work side.


You nailed it.........a large majority of people who try windsurfing give up after only a few attempts because they are falling repeatedly or the board won't go anywhere. A couple of early lessons......to get that first thrill of the wind moving the board roughly where you want it to go...... will often trigger the infant stages of the addiction and provide the impetus to progress. Of course there are those who will slog along teaching themselves despite constant frustration.......I did.........most people won't.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 19119

PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 9:49 am    Post subject: Re: Go to Aruba! Reply with quote

mrgybe wrote:
a large majority of people who try windsurfing give up after only a few attempts because they are falling repeatedly or the board won't go anywhere.


I gave three buds their first WSing lessons (I was a certified instructor) on longboards while we were on vacation on Oahu. Two were lettered, accomplished jocks, one was definitely not (he grew up in HI and had never tried any water sport). The jocks gave up in 15 minutes when their brute force approach failed; the latter was WSing and rope tacking back and forth in 30 minutes because he actually listened and applied proper techniques.

OTOH ... our whole instruction school gave up on one student and refunded her money after a weekend of trying. She could not comprehend what wind was -- "What does the wind have to do with where flags or clouds or smoke or luffed sails go?" -- and was getting nowhere.

Mike \m/
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MrFish



Joined: 04 Sep 2009
Posts: 248

PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 11:45 am    Post subject: Re: Go to Aruba! Reply with quote

jjcrf250 wrote:
My boyfriend then (and now my husband) tried to interest me in windsurfing on his old gear on a gusty lake in cold water, and he tried to be my instructor. Not very successful. I did some research and suggested we go somewhere on vacation where I could expect steady strong wind and warm water. We went to Aruba and we both took lessons. After one week he had nailed his jibes and I was planing on a 100L board in my front foot strap and I could "beach" start in chest deep water. Now this was fun! And 15 years later we are both still planning our vacations around windsurfing.


That's the way to do it. You see so many people, who instead of lessons, wander around the beach for years getting free advice, and barely progress at all.
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swchandler



Joined: 08 Nov 1993
Posts: 9413

PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

While I have already offered my thoughts on the question of taking or not taking lessons, I'm more than a bit curious about the price tag for a trip for two to Aruba that includes everything. That would encompass airfare, hotels, transportation, dining, equipment rentals, and of course, lessons. This kind of information would shed some real light on things for those now contemplating learning to windsurf.

Let's assume that the whole experience was a huge success, so that the issue really is not about taking or not taking lessons.
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MrFish



Joined: 04 Sep 2009
Posts: 248

PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't see why it has to be Aruba - it could be anywhere really. The thing is--i think that the early part of ws should be done intensely, like they do kites.

To get to an intermediate level is not hard, unless you spread out the beginner stuff out over a year. Or three.

So many schools do a 1/2 day course for $75, then out the door. That doesn't work. If 1 out of 100 stuck out of that mess, beaches would be jammed. But it reality, it's more like 1: 1000. Lot's of people who've 'windsurfed' haven't.

The only thing is ws that's hard is jibing. Hook and foot, planning, water start all easy, if properly taught. If not properly taught though, all bets are off.
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 4569

PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mr Fish is right......clearly it doesn't have to be Aruba............there are many places to learn that are far less expensive for a US resident. Based upon my windsurfing travels, I believe that Hatteras is one of the best places in the world to learn. Shallow sound waters for miles........warm for 6-7 months a year......good instructors and equipment........and relatively cheap accommodation, eating and transportation (with the option to progress to the waves just across the street). Being able to hop back on the board from shallow water, and not worrying about offshore winds is a big confidence booster for a beginner. All you need is that first exhilaration of moving quickly across the water.........without being in fear of your life!!
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swchandler



Joined: 08 Nov 1993
Posts: 9413

PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 1:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I knew when I asked, the Aruba vacation would represent a steep price tag, but jjcrf250 was so convinced that that's the way to do it. In my view, it was a fair question. Still though, given all the emphasis and importance attributed to taking lessons, it only makes sense to pencil out the real costs involved. Traveling to Hatteras to take lessons would still be quite expensive for someone on the west coast like myself.

For someone like me that lives in Santa Barbara, the closest spots where I could take advertised professional lessons would be at Coyote Point or Alameda through Boardsports School, or in the Delta through an ABK camp during the select time(s) that they show up during the season. Even though one can camp in the Delta for the price of a $20 membership to the Rio Vista Windsurfing Association, it would still take close to 3 tanks of gas ($225) for me to drive my van up and back. Having never taken lessons myself, it's unclear how many are needed and the relative cost for them. Also, one has to question whether the lessons include the rental for the kit too.

So even taking a shoestring approach that would be available to me, I think that it can add up to some more serious money (seemingly more than moonie5961 was thinking to spend for the whole kit on Craig's List), and I haven't even figured in the cost for lessons. If you don't bring your own food, or don't have the necessary camping gear, the cost would escalate further.

It might seem that I'm working some of you a bit, but I think that it's of value to pull the cover off the lesson scenario so that the folks interested in learning windsurfing see more of the whole budget picture. Given the fact that many here have already paid the price for what they're recommending, maybe they can flesh this thing out in more real terms.
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