While some of us were eating hot dogs and launching fireworks, Phil Morstad, Co-Owner of Goodwinds had something else on mind to celebrate 4th of July with a bang. Phil managed to break the record for highest jump ever recorded with a woo device, with an extraordinary 70.1 feet jump. Most of the record jumps recorded with the WOO devices came from stormy conditions in Europe, thus this record really shows that with the right combination of elements anyone can achieve great heights. Check WOO sports article highlighting the record here.
Below Phil’s account of how he achieved the world-record setting jump, and some tips so YOU can also maximize your boosts:
It was a sunny beautiful day in Dorado, but a little windier than usual, with consistent 22-25 knots. Our station is located in an area that consistently measures a few knots under the actual wind of where we jump. I had been waiting for a day like this all summer since we got the WOOs.
The North Rebel is the ideal kite for boosting for several reasons: Its a high aspect kite with a flat shape that integrates a loaded 5th line setup. The loaded 5th line allowed the kite designer to eliminate the bridals, while maintaining a high rigidity and amazing depower capability. The rigidity of the kite allows you to create extreme load into the lines without the kite flexing and robbing you of power; the de-powering capability allows you to hold a stronger edge with a more powerful kite.
Most Pro’s competing in freestyle competitions, choose to use a board that is bigger (i.e. North TS Hadlow edition) to have more successful landings without the aid of the kite (i.e. power moves with the kite low). However for the high jumps we are looking for, a shorter and more narrow board allows you to hold your edge better, which also creates more load on the kite.
We’ve found that 24 meter lines offer a good balance between kite speed, power, and response. Longer lines allow you to load them up more, but the kite response would be slower. Shorter lines would produce quicker response and speed but less ability to load up.
In our bay there’s a spot that is about 50 yards offshore that is very flat due to a very shallow reef, and I was timing my jump so that I would boost of a small two foot wave that usually forms on the reef. My landings were in about a foot of water on the reef and I would do a single kite loop above my head just before I landed to create lift for a buttery smooth landing.
The flat water allows you to create more riding speed, while at the same time holding a strong edge. A small wave helps both with timing the jump and helps to create an explosive take-off. A bigger wave, robs the rider of energy as they climb the wave face causing a decrease in line tension. Side shore wind allows you to approach the wave head on.
The ideal situation would be to approach the wave at maximum speed slightly off the wind. As you approach the wave begin to load your lines by edging and sending your kite towards 12 o’clock. Time your release from the water, so that the kite is at 12. Once you have liftoff, you can bring the kite slightly behind you before returning it to 12, as you climb to the apex of your jump. During your landing it is important to move your kite to create lift and for a smooth landing try looping your kite above your head moments before touchdown.
After my first session I Recorded 69.6 foot jump. It was so much bigger than my jumps on other days that I thought for sure it was an error. When I saw the consistent numbers in 40, 50, 60 foot jumps, I started to believe it but I wanted to prove it to myself. On the second session is when I recorded the 70.1 jump. Our friend and Instructor Andy Hurdman was on the beach and wanted to challenge my jump. When he went out he could only get a little over 37 feet. At which time he challenged me that my jump was impossible and that probably there was something wrong with the WOO. At which point he had me take his kite, his board and zinc it to his phone. On that session I managed to reach 60 feet; which we deleted from Andys stats, but that proved to those in the beach that the jump was legit.
You don’t need a huge storm to achieve a high jump. There is a lot that you can control, apart from weather, that will improve your jump stats. With the right amount of practice, and the right equipment, boosting is accessible to all.