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Video:Tips for Windsurfing in Tarifa

with Jonathan Stewart

Windsurfing is an amazing sport, and there's no better place to learn in the world than Tarifa, Spain. Here are tips for windsurfing in Tarifa, including where in Tarifa to go for windsurfing and how to book a windsurfing package.See Transcript

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Transcript:Tips for Windsurfing in Tarifa

One of the best windsurfing spots in the world is Tarifa. Located on the southernmost tip of Spain, this small coastal town is the windsurfing capital of Europe. Take a look as some pointers on how to windsurf in Tarifa and enjoy the laid back good times in this spot that lies between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic.

Where to Windsurf in Tarifa

While in Tarifa, there are plenty of courses for beginners located at schools along the major thoroughfare of Batalla de Salado, the largest of which is Tarifa Spin Out. Here, you can find board rentals and lessons for adults and children alike. These are usually done in groups although there are private lessons for an additional fee. The lessons are approximately 90 minutes and are intended to help you get the fundamentals down.

Windsurfing can be tricky to learn at first, which is why having a good instructor is key. No matter what you do, stay focused, have fun, and keep at it -- you'll find it's definitely worth the learning curve.

Learn Board Basics for Windsurfing in Tarifa

Before you get started, you'll likely cover a few board basics. As you're heading out, be sure to keep your daggerboard down at all times. You can do this by pulling the knob at the rear of the board to a lowered position and then pushing it to the front when you are heading out into the water. You'll also need to know how to use the foot straps and the deck plate, as well as how to hold onto the boom.

When heading out into the water, first determine the wind direction and then put the sail on the board in a position that is downwind to the board. Now, it's time to get yourself onto the board. You'll want to swim to the upwind side of the board, and push yourself up onto the board. Start out on your knees and then slowly stand up to gain your balance and orientation.

Tips for Starting to Windsurf in Tarifa

Now, it's time to pull the sail up from the water by working hand over hand in a fluid motion. Grab the mast with both hands but let it swing freely. This should now put you in a forward motion. Then, put one of your hands on the boom so that the mast is leading the sail in a front-facing direction. With the other hand, take the boom, lean back, and make sure you have your arms straight. Imagine being in a pose that looks like the number seven. That will give you an idea of the angle of your body and position of your hands.

You can use the hand that is toward the back to go forward and speed up. When you want to slow down, you simply let it loose. Your feet should remain behind the mast. Be sure to keep the foot that is in front in a forward-facing position. You will spend much of your time making readjustments for movement, speed, and direction. However, you can always drop the boom to take a break.

Tips for Booking a Windsurfing Package in Tarifa

A good way to get plenty of practice in is to book a holiday to Tarifa. There are windsurfing vacation packages that include instruction, rental, and plenty of time to enjoy Tarifa's best water sport as well a little whale or dolphin watching. And hey if you get good, you just might be able to sail yourself right down to Morocco.

I'm Jonathon Stewart, with About.com.

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