How can I learn to carve better?!? Help?

Discussion in 'All Discussions' started by WillyM, Aug 15, 2012.

  1. WillyM

    WillyM Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    Hey all,

    I'd say that I am a novice surfer right now. I can pop up fine, start to do a little carving, but I can't ride down the line and carve the face of the wave yet like I see more intermediate and advanced surfers doing.

    How do I get better at this? (bottom turns, top turns, riding down the line etc.)

    What are the steps to doing the things I listed above?

    Thanks guys, I really appreciate it!
  2. Mr.Belmar

    Mr.Belmar Well-Known Member

    Aug 19, 2010
    practice and time bro! Practice and time... you just gotta take control of that board! And learn the correct time on the wave to turn- keeping a high line

  3. superbust

    superbust Well-Known Member

    Nov 2, 2008
    Watch the pros, use your body weight and hips/shoulders, and use those fins! Having your back foot in the right place will help you carve much better.
  4. Zippy

    Zippy Well-Known Member

    Nov 16, 2007
    It's all about rear foot placement. If you back foot is off you won't be able to control the board as it pivots through the carve.
  5. dlrouen

    dlrouen Well-Known Member

    Jun 6, 2012
    Practice carving on white wash (going straight), before you take it to the curls. Once you get carving down to a science, take it to the break. When I was learning, I found it difficult to carve on the face - learning on the wash was a lot easier.
  6. brukuns

    brukuns Active Member

    Aug 2, 2012
    When I was still a beginner (5 years later, I can proudly call myself a beginner +), I was having this problem of doing a bottom turn, ride up the face of the wave, but by the time I would make a turn to ride it back down, it was too late and I would lag behind the wave (not stuck on the white water, but actually behind the wave).

    I started making the turn to ride down the face earlier. and I started improving from that. This may help.

    Also, if you feel the wave is not carrying you after you go up the face, try to work with your body weight. on smaller mushy surf I find it helps a lot to keep a very low instance, otherwise depending on your board, the wave won't carry you.
  7. rmit

    rmit Active Member

    Nov 21, 2009
    Strengthening your core wouldn't hurt either. That helped me a lot.
  8. fupafest

    fupafest Well-Known Member

    Feb 16, 2010
    1. Watch as many videos and good surfers as you can in person. Next, try not to be concerned with spray, vertical-ness of the turn rather the bio-michanics of what is going on. (I.E., pivoting the hips, looking over your shoulder, extending or retracting the back foot. And also where the pressure is on the heels vs toes).
    2. Get a coach, this sounds corny but it works. Little did I know all the mistakes and good things I as doing. Just b/c it feels good doesnt mean it looks good or is proper.
    3. Buy a longboard. I mean a longboard skate board like a Sector 9. Start bombing hills and start getting used to the motions of pivoting your hips and the toes/heel side pressure thing I was talking about. When you get more advanced you can start sliding out the tail and getting a true bottom to top turn feeling. You can even take it up step further and slid out to 180s/360s. This will give you the right motion for the airs/nose picks everyone is obsessed with.
    4. Skate the bowl. Although, I haven't done this myself. I've seen my friend improve their surfing by skating the bowl.
    Let me know if you want/need any more tips and tricks.
  9. Zippy

    Zippy Well-Known Member

    Nov 16, 2007
    Believe it or not those ripsticks are a really good training tool for surfing.
  10. Erock

    Erock Well-Known Member

    Aug 6, 2011
    Get a carving skateboard and practice carving whenever you get a chance, do the same with surfing.
    You never mentioned what you are riding. If you are riding something like a Simmons, then of course you are going to have trouble carving.

    Most importantly: Keep your eyes on where you are going, not where you have been. It will help you keep a lot more momentum and really draw out your turns.
  11. dbslim

    dbslim Well-Known Member

    Dec 18, 2009
    Amen too that. P90x took my surfing to a new level.
  12. brek

    brek Well-Known Member

    Jun 17, 2008
    Can't tell from your post, but are you currently able to consistently go down the line, riding the green of the wave? You have to get that down.

    I'm always wary of giving out advice since I feel like I barely know what I'm doing, but maybe some of this will help....

    Angle your take off so you are already headed down the line when you pop up. This is especially true for really small waves since there isn't really time to do a proper bottom turn.

    Unweight yourself to climb up the face.... lifting your arms helps with that. It's almost like you are jumping higher up on the wave.

    If you are going backside, rotate your front shoulder back and point your arm behind you. Follow it with your eyes and hips.

    Wave selection... don't ride closeouts.
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2012
  13. jizwhale

    jizwhale Well-Known Member

    Oct 8, 2011
    To add to some already good tips, lead with your shoulders and everything else will automatically follow. Keep your knees bent and lower body loose. Always look at where you’re heading or want to be heading. Anticipate what the wave may do and apply a maneuver. Believe in yourself and visualize the completion of your maneuver until both feet are no longer on the board and there is no hope of getting them back on. Practice a lot and don't pressure yourself to be insta-Slater. Falling is a good thing despite its lack of coolness. Even for guys that are good, if you’re not eating it at least sometimes you’re not trying hard enough. Without being turdy, ride as many waves as you can in a sesh. Every minute in the water is experience under your belt.
  14. travy

    travy Well-Known Member

    Jul 3, 2010
    learn to use your rail more
  15. forman

    forman Well-Known Member

    Aug 6, 2012

    I agree... my brother has one of those and I can honestly say that messing around with it over the years has really helped me migrate to using a short board - the motion for sharp carves, turns, and even pumping are feels very similar. My brother also has a quaterpipe - really good for learning vertical techniques and snaps using the ripstik (charge the quaterpipe and snapping a sharp carve back down) I find the only difference is you weight your back foot a lot more while surfing while turning (which you don't on the ripstik)
  16. dlrouen

    dlrouen Well-Known Member

    Jun 6, 2012
    Excellent advice, Erock. Invest in a skateboard and starting mapping out some sweet hills and banks around town. Rmit mentioned "strengthening your core" & skateboarding around town will certainly help. I'll put on a good Sublime track and bomb a nice hill - am I skateboarding or surfing?...for real.

  17. cresto4

    cresto4 Well-Known Member

    Aug 19, 2010
    good advice for life this.
  18. lbsurfer

    lbsurfer Well-Known Member

    Apr 20, 2009
    skate bowl, especially if you're regular footed. going frontside and actually carving on the wall as opposed to just pumping is a lot like carving on a wave
  19. WaterSandwich

    WaterSandwich Member

    Jan 17, 2010
  20. rlghdude

    rlghdude Well-Known Member

    Aug 19, 2009

    I know you think this probably doesnt help much right now but just go for it with wreckless abandon man.. As long as your not dropping in on others or putting other surfers in harms way by your flailing apendages, just go for it bro.. Paddle into every wave you can and throw your board and your body all over the place until you get a feel for it.. Its all about speed, take off fast, turn fast, pump fast, never get off the rail.. Just do it like you dont give a ****.. There it is:

    Step 1: Surf like you jsut dont give a **** about falling or smacking your face on the board or looking like an idiot. Who cares what anyone else thinks. Its your style man, and you want it to be your own, not someone elses. Just go for it man, fall all over the damn place. Foot placement and all that other stuff will come with time.