Now that your rig is assembled, you can begin heading towards the water. When on shore, your gear should lay with the mast pointed into the direction of where the wind is coming from and with the board flipped upside down so to prevent any damage to the fixed fin on the back of the board. To pick everything up, first pick up the sail by grabbing the boom at the end closest to the mast. Then, while holding the sail by the boom, grab the board by the handle attached to the very back of the board. This will allow you to walk without the sail or the rear fin touching the ground. As always, when holding or carrying the board, make sure the mast is facing into the wind.

windsurfing doesn’t require deep water

Once the water level is above your knee, it is safe to assume that the fin won’t touch the bottom so you can put both the board and sail into the water. Now for the tricky part – climbing onto the board without falling off. Push to board a little further into the water to make sure that when you extend the daggerboard it will not touch the ground. Extending the daggerboard will be the first thing you’ll need to do before getting on, as it will add to your stability and will be difficult to do once you’re on. The sail will be laying on one side of the board, and you’ll be getting on the board from the other. If you have followed all the previous instructions correctly, the wind should be blowing at your back as you climb onto the board. Put your hands onto the center of the board and climb on with your knees. Do not stand up immediately, as you’ll need to pull up the sail as you’re standing up. With your knees on the board, reach for the uphaul strap. With the uphaul in your hands, begin getting up on your feet.

Before you’ll be able to get fully upright you’ll need to pull the sail up with the uphaul by leaning back slightly. This will allow the weight of your body to do the heavy lifting naturally. All you’ll need to do then is slowly work up the uphaul with your hands. Once the mast is upright, grab it with both hands just below the boom handles. Remain standing firmly, with your legs slightly bent, and holding the mast with both hands. You are now in control of the board and can maneuver it by making slight changes to the position of the sail. It is at this point that you will begin to feel how the wind plays with the sail. All maneuvers will now be made relative to the wind, and the very first and basic steering that you will do will be with the mast facing the wind. Lean the sail slightly to the back of the board to point the nose of the board towards the wind. Conversely, lean the sail slightly to the front to point the board away from the wind. Congratulations, you are now technically windsurfing.

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