The Backside Air Reverse
The backside air reverse is a trick that I had a really hard time with.
The spin in the air feels natural so itís easy to come off the lip and spin in the air, but landing backwards and continuing the spin into a 360 is very difficult.
Catch a wedgy backside wave thatís waist to chest high and has a steep close out section at the end. Pump down the line to get enough speed so you can launch into the air. You want a lot of speed, but you need to be in control to make an air. Bottom turn at a 20-30 degree angle to project yourself off the wave where the lip meets the whitewash. Stay low and centered with your eyes focused on the lip. Angle your board down the line, or even a little bit in front of the wave to adjust for the movement of the wave while you are in the air.
If your board is pointed out the back when you start the spin you will end up out the back when you land. Bend your knees and use your body like a spring to pop into the air. When the top half of your board is out of the water (when your front foot is leaving the water) you want to turn your shoulders into the spin, push your back foot into the spin, and spring off the lip. You donít want to kick your foot out; you want to push it to initiate the spin.
Once in the air your body will want to extend so suck your legs and board up for style and height.
Youíll be spinning blind so it will be hard to see where you are going. Repetition will make this feel comfortable. Try to keep your board level in the air while staying low and centered (this is probably something to work on once you get these down). Your front knee should be bent and your back leg should be extended pushing the tail around. Your stance should be a bit wider than usual for better balance so stay low for style points. Ideally your arms should be bent at a 90 degree angle by your sides for balance; but just do whatever comes naturally until youíve got these wired, then you can make minor adjustments. Look down between your legs on your toe-side rail so you can time your landing. You wonít be able to see exactly where youíre going to land, but at least you can see the landing come and get ready for the impact.
Bend your knees and absorb the landing. Be strong on the landing so you donít fall back into a layback (I used to do that a lot. It looks really bad!). Stay low with a wide stance, and most of your weight on your back foot. The weight on your back foot will help you continue with the momentum of the wave, and help you finish your spin by re-connecting your fins to the water. Be careful not to tail dive at this stage because youíre backwards. Once you start spinning transfer your weight to your front foot while staying low. Youíre done; look for the next section and bust out a big combo for good measure.
Check out Taj on these ones because heís the master. It took me almost 2 years to get this trick down, but all those kook-outs are worth it now. Be persistent, keep trying to stick them and youíll get it one day.
- Speed with control!
- Stay low, use your body as a spring and use your shoulders to initiate the spin.
- Stay low and centered while spinning.
- Stomp it tail first, and donít tail dive.