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The Fickster (Isobars in action) vid!
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14234

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2012 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GURGLETROUSERS wrote:
I can't believe it possible that after 30 years of intense high wind windsurfing, any of us of advancing years could progress further in HIGH WIND HEAVY WATER conditions. The strength and drive may be there BUT, flexibility, (think twisting, jerking, and bending about in surf), joint, and tendon resilience will NOT be.

In all, I wonder if it's really healthy (psychologically) to remain fanatical about a single long term sport, too far into old age. Decline is inevitable, I'm afraid.

We can, however, develop new or fine tune older skills. I learn a bit more each windy day about useful nuances of control, there's always freestyle if I had another 30 years to figure that out (slow learner), and how far I can push my wind envelope without endangering my lightly damaged knees.

We don't even want too much flexibility; that increases joints' susceptibility to injury. Stretching is for four classes of athletes, according to many professional sources:
Rehab for injured ones.
Gymnasts and ballet dancers willing to sacrifice their joints to the cause.
Those with specific range of motion anomalies.
OLD athletes, and only after a thorough warmup.

Yes, decline is inevitable, but not nearly (for recreational purposes) as soon as people think. Exercise and nutrition can give aging athletes a huge advantage over young people unwilling to pursue them, retired people have far more time to play than younger working stiffs, and many old people can outlast most young people on the water (whether from genes or conditioning is not clear to me).

My fanaticism over WS does at least three things for me:
It gets me to the gym in the off season.
It gives me extra purpose and drive in both the gym and my life in general.
It improves my health and thus my quality of life.

Sure, I'll suffer psychologically when age really impacts my WSing. So far its only obvious impact has been reducing my endurance by maybe 25%, and there are several ways to restore much of that loss. With any luck and sense of reality, we'll recognize that at some point we'll just have to buy a kite, a set of golf clubs, or a bigger TV. I already gave up my REAL passion once due to its injury rate, so I guess I can do that again.

What windsurfers may fear most is when all I'm still able to do is sit here and type.
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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 1354

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 5:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah! A recognition of mortality creeping into your thoughts Mike, Welcome to our club! (Is your brain finally rebelling at all this undignified bouncing, rattling, and spinning in ever decreasing gybing circles? Laughing )

I absolutely agree that the driving force can't be denied, and MUST burst out in some other direction. (The 7 year itch...or more like 30 years... and all that.) I pity those poor souls who lack a lust for life.

It's only in the last couple of years (two bad winters were a catalyst) that I've broken the tyranny of the short board treadmill, and you know what, it's a relief! It's like being reborn with fresh vision. I flirted briefly with some twisty spinny freestyle trickery, but I wasn't much good at it, and it was pointless anyway!

Odd thing is I now enjoy my less frequent B&J and lighter surf outings MORE, because I no longer see them as the main course. They're 'nice' diversions, so does it matter if the skills are fraying a bit at the edges.

What I always finds helps in figuring out where life is going, is standing atop a favourite hill at night ( a well known conical 998 foot high beauty spot on our N.Yorkshire Moors) and just absorbing the atmosphere, and thinking. On a balmy, still and silent moonlit night, the whole of industrial Teesside, with its countless thousands of yellow and white twinkling lights is laid out almost as far as you can see. Further to the left are the dark farming lands.

You wonder just how many countless thousands of others throughout human history have stood on that precise spot, gazing out over a somewhat different landscape, and whether it helped them to understand life? I like to think so!

Now where are those sparkly summer seas and mellow winds, with countless Scottish islands to explore? (Or more to the point, where the hell have I hidden my Kona longboard???)
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14234

PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GURGLETROUSERS wrote:
Ah! A recognition of mortality creeping into your thoughts Mike, Welcome to our club! (Is your brain finally rebelling at all this undignified bouncing, rattling, and spinning in ever decreasing gybing circles?

I pity those poor souls who lack a lust for life.

It's only in the last couple of years (two bad winters were a catalyst) that I've broken the tyranny of the short board treadmill

I still am in it for the adrenaline and altered consciousness (that place from, if your mind wanders, you crash). I can do it better than I could a few years ago, but I just can't do it quite as long (Yes, I'm still talking about windsurfing), and I won't do it if the gusts are too extreme and sudden, because of lingering knee vulnerabilities from injuries when the gusts are too extreme and sudden.

I've been aware of my reduced endurance for about 4-5 years now, but it's still way above average even for young people so I'll get by. From what I've read, however, we go downhill very rapidly after 65, and even more rapidly after 70. My cancer is scheduled to knock me on my ass in 6-8 years -- my mid 70s -- thus my refusal to accept treatments that would end my WSing immediately.

Pity is the right word, IMO. I keep trying at every opportunity to motivate aging farts of any age to get moving and quit dying so fast, but few listen. I see all these people in the gym -- and realize that they're the ones in the gym! -- all but wasting their time by putting out such a TINY amount of effort. Strolling around the track, pumping 10 pounds of iron, and doing hours of slow cardio MIGHT BE healthier than watching TV, but not by much and not necessarily. But unless they ask WTH I'm doing working so hard I say nothing.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5259

PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You mean Mike was right about slotted fins? All of that hydrodynamics didn't go to waste? Is he up to 2 times now?

What a riot!
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