Have you ever had your back foot blown off the board by whitewater trying to make it around a section? Before traction pads, that used to happen to me occasionally, and that was, at the time, the main reason why I started using them. Over the years, I feel the most important part about the pad are the block and the arch. In fact, I've only put those two parts on many of my boards. I feel like when you're pushing the tail around and using a lot of lateral force, the arch and block keep your back foot from slipping, and give you a little something more to push against. Plus, it helps keep your foot planted when the lip explodes right next to it.
Definately had that happen to me.
So I find this thread interesting because most guys I know in the water around here use the tail pad on their shortboards. Also interesting is that no one has mentioned anything about the relation between the tail pad and duck diving the board.. I like having the pad on my shorter boards (5'4" and 5'11") because it helps me kick the tail down under the wave when I duck dive. Does anyone else do this? im curious now...
i definitely don't have an issue w/ that...simply getting my foot onto the tail is enough, though to be honest i usually just use my shin. it's a bad habit i got into when i was riding a classic-stlye twin keel fish a lot. i found i could wedge my shin right into the butt crack of the tail to duckdive the thing.
Originally Posted by freckers
i have a bunch of boards coming, 5 to be exact, so i'm kind of up in the air about whether to throw pads on them or not. i know i can always rip them off, but that's a huge PITA & i'd rather not drop the coin if i can avoid it. fiancee's already not particularly stoked about 5 brand spankin' new boards arriving mere months before the wedding.