Thursday, 19 July 2012

Forward Clinic...

As promised, here´s the short video I took of the boys´forward clinic at the weekend. I love doing forward loop classes, great fun! To be fair, the boys had all done it with me before last year- this time they wanted to finish the job properly. Rupert (Naish sail) wanted to change his rotation to be able to go higher and start stalling them, Dale (green sail) who is 62! wanted to stop doing cheese rolls and do forward rotations, and Phil(yellow sail) just wanted to land a forward! Check it out and decide for yourself if they did or not. One thing the video demonstrates is the level of commitment you need to learn this not-so-difficult move- this was just the first 50 minutes or so and they carried on throwing one on every run for a couple of hours after. That´s how you learn ´em...

Forward Loop Clinic with team Panda. from Stephen Gibson on Vimeo.

You might notice a short clip of Hayden in there (Tushingham sail)- he joined in the clinic but snapped his board on the 3rd run just chop-hopping onto a wave face, so his session was cut short in fairly spectacular style...

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Clinical forwards.

OK, so we ran the forward loop clinic the other day and, as promised, I videoed some of the action from the beach (the first hour before I had to get in the water and help out a bit). Very successful forward clinic, it has to be said. I´ll edit the bits of vid this evening and hopefully post it up tomorrow. In the meantime, here´s a couple of pics from the same day...

During the clinic, we filmed this horrific attempt at a cheese roll by Dale and when we looked at the footage in slow-mo, we decided it was almost a totally new move so I made a short (piss-take) clip to unveil it to the masses. It´s been named the Panda, after the boys´ ridiculously inadequate hire car. Prepare to be amused (bear in mind that Dale is 62 this year. Respect!)...

Sunday, 15 July 2012

A perfect Friday...

On a rare tuition-free day (I was doing a bit of spot-guidance for a group from Cornwall), I was all set to make the call to go to Punta when I checked the windmills next to my house and detected a hint more north in the wind than forecast. My local wind senses tingling, I rang my "man on the beach" down at Puerto Lajas and lo and behold he confirmed that the wind looked quite sideshore down there, albeit quite light. It being only 9.30 in the morning, I gambled that the wind would stay north and pick up as the day went on and, guess what? Yeah, the wind had already freshened by the time we arrived at 11 and we got straight on the water and had 2 hours totally to ourselves before we had to change down to 4.5s and 5.0s and other people started to arrive. Although the waves were fairly small (head-high) it was an epic, fun session with friends and we sailed for far too long, coming back in at 6pm. What a day! Check out the pics below, most from the little punchy wave in front of the parking area, great fun for aerials and jumping, and also the bit of vid at the end, stolen from a friend´s camera (thanks, Sam!), which gives you a better perspective of what a fun place this is to sail when it works, even when it´s small...

lajas from Stephen Gibson on Vimeo.

Saturday, 14 July 2012

Another week of wind...

The wind is still blowing during one of the best summer seasons I can remember over here- it´s been amazing! Last week´s student was my mate Simon Hobbs from Cardiff, who came over to crack the forward loop. Dogged by injury from the get-go (he blacked his eye trying 360s in 40kts at Sotavento, then wrenched his shoulder), it was always going to be an uphill battle but Si soldiered on and made good progress, critically disposing of the "fear factor", indeed almost cracking it on the last day before his injured shoulder stopped play. We had wind in abundance on every day of his stay and sailed every day at Punta, bar one when we headed south to learn 360s. All in all, a great week, shame about the injuries as he could have had the loop cracked for sure, but that´s windsurfing and he´ll be back and get it next time...

Si, flying like a local at Punta.

Duck gybe in the legendary lagoon at Sotavento.

How not to 360!

Punta again...stylin´!

...and again...

Today, I´m off to Punta to teach forwards again. If I get time I´m going to try to make a video documentary of how it goes today to post up. In the meantime, check out this awesome video Hobbsy made of the sailing back at home in Wales (when he wasn´t injured).

Untitled from SIMON HOBBS on Vimeo.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012


During the surfdock clinic last week, I did an impromptu ponch class/diagramatic analysis on the side of my van to explain the dynamics of the move to the boys. Unfortunately, we didn´t get the ideal conditions to try it out (Sotavento is the place for ponches, but it was too windy and mirror-flat when we went down there), so I thought I´d get some snaps when I next went down two days ago. This time conditions were much better, maxed on 4.5 with knee high wavelets and wind cross-off. Check out the snaps below, and see if you can match them with the diagram on the van pic above- bet you can´t, haha!!!!!

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Windy, Wavey Surfdock Week.

Although it finished almost a week ago, this is the first chance I´ve had to sit down and write a report on the Surfdock summer wave clinic. Wind-wise, it was by far my most successful clinic to date, with wind from first light til dark on every single day of the boys´one week stay. Without going into too much detail and writing a blow-by-blow account, we sailed at Sotavento and Glass the first day, then Glass and Punta the second and Punta every day for the remainder. We also had the good fortune to have Irish wave wizard Oisin Van Gelderen along for the trip, to help out with tuition (and motivation!), so the pressure was certainly on the boys to step up. Although the lads outlined their goals at the start of the week and everyone had slightly different aims, the one common factor was that old demon the forward loop, and with conditions at Punta so totally perfect, it turned into a 90% forward loop clinic- some of the boys learning it for the first time, and some others perfecting their rotation with the aim of stalling them.
I´d like to congratulate everyone who took part as they all gave it 110% for the entire week, and were looking decidedly jaded when they left for the airport....
All in all, a huge success- 6 solid days of sailing in waves, 3 meals out (and a couple of nights out I suspect), and a tongue-in-cheek award ceremony (hope you´ve all still got those "trophies", you earned them), and of course tons of craic! I can only hope they enjoyed it as much as I did. Thanks and well done (and I hope your ribs heal soon, Peter).





The instructors hard at work.

So that´s it for what looks certain to become an annual event, a huge thanks to Colin from for organising everything at his end (with probably more than a little help from Nina, I´d imagine), the legendary OVG for his help, Ryan for his inspiring sailing (well done on the backside 3s, youngster), and of course all the boys- see you all next year if you´ve recovered by then...

Welcome to the site!
Aswell as regular features and news updates from Fuerte, I am going to be using this site to promote my windsurfing clinics.
After 15 years on the island,having competed in the PWA freestyle world cup and now representing Fanatic Boards and North Sails, I have decided to give something back to the sport which has given me so much over the years.
My aim is to provide clinics "tailor-made"for each individual, with a strong emphasis on practical in-the-water instruction, backed up by on-the-beach tuition and video analysis. The consistent conditions here in Fuerte make learning so much easier and, perhaps equally important, more fun than the typically inconsistent, cold UK - why not come over for a week and improve your windsurfing by a year!!!

I can help with any manoeuvres from carve-gybe through to advanced jumping and freestyle, just email me with your wish list and we'll take it from there! Over the next few months, I am going to be video-chronicling manoeuvres which you can check out on the right in my tricktionary sections. This will give you some idea of the things we can work on, or, if you can't make it over here, you may find them useful to help understand and break down a manoeuvre you would like to learn (hopefully, the slow-mo will help in this respect!).Just click on the trick and scroll down..........
Anyway, keep checking it out as I have loads more in my bag of tricks and will be updating as and when I get the footage.
If you're interested, e-mail me on
See ya in Fuerte?