Windsurfing has always enjoyed a good amount of popularity. In it’s early days when also known as ‘sailboarding’, it was simply EVERYWHERE! Back then the concept of windsurfing was actually pretty tame. Windsurfing was considered a light wind sport! Thankfully, nowadays more people are interested in the upper end of the windy spectrum. In the beginning, it was the simplicity of the sport and the ease of use that made windsurfing so popular. Now, it’s a far more exciting story.
Thankfully times have moved on. From the neon colours of the 1980′s and 90′s to the technological explosion of the new millennium, windsurfing has developed in massive ways. Refinement has been the key to windsurfing equipment development; boards have gotten smaller, lighter and more performance orientated in general and sails have become more manageable, more compact and far more efficient. The massive difference in the quality of the windsurfing equipment on offer provides athletes with the base they need to push the limits of what the sport is physically capable of.
3 areas in windsurfing have shown the biggest performance developments; speed, manoeuvrability and weight.
Speed sailing has often been the heavyweight championship. The strongest, often heaviest sailors, on the most powerful, fastest equipment. The speeds that these athletes have been able to accomplish is simply un real. Compared to the origional windsurfers modern speed sailing is essential space travel! Modern speed sailors can sail up to speeds of around 60mph! An amazing spectacle the speed sailors on the pro tour are always pushing the limits of how fast a windsurfer can travel and recently that limit was pushed further towards the impossible!
Speed Sailors aren’t the only ones pushing the limits though and many would argue that the world of waves and freestyle is even more impressive than the fastest sailors on the planet! Freestyle in particular is moving so fast that it is almost impossible to keep up with the amount of new tricks and skills on show from the worlds elite. One man in particular who has dominated the freestyle arena for years and is always the one to push the limits that extra mile is jose ‘gollito’ estredo. This magicians skill on a windsurfer has to be seen to be believed and even then you might struggle! The move in the video below is a physical riddle and has the majority of the windsurfing world baffled! Just how much more can be done on a windsurfer is mind tingling but gollito believes it is just the tip of the iceberg!
Similar stand out performers can be seen in the ever amazing world of wave sailing, from the fluidity of the carves to the complexity of the tricks there is one thing that is more impressive than anything else in watersports. Getting air! The height of jumps performed by the worlds best wave sailors is staggering and one boy from Germany is spear heading the arial attack. Philip Koster burst onto the professional scene as a teenager and has cemented his place as the best wave sailor in the world with multiple world titles already! Whilst his technical sailing is awe inspiring it’s the ferocity of Koster arial maneuovres that blows your mind here is a demo of what we mean:
And there you have it, three examples of three men pushing the limits of modern windsurfing. The terrifyingly exciting prospect though is that these men could still only be scratching at the surface! With new inspired sailors and better and better equipment, just how far are we away from the limits of this epic sport? We’re looking forward to finding out! Certainly come a long way from the image at the top of the page! See you on the water!