HomeNon classéWingfoil, a popular water sport that originated in the 1980s

    Wingfoil, a popular water sport that originated in the 1980s

    Since 2019, wingfoil is a water sport that continues to develop. Perched on a foilboard and holding an inflatable wing in their hands, riders take advantage of the slightest breath of wind to criss-cross the sea. However, the first wings were designed almost 30 years ago.

    THE wingfoil is a nautical practice that has developed recently. It is about moving on a aluminum board when we have an inflatable wing Between hands. However, the birth of the first wings dates back to the beginning of the 80s. We were also able to discover the champion of sailboard Pete Cabrinha trying out a kind of wing in 1982, but heavy and mounted on a rigid structure.

    The birth of the wing

    Very similar to the wings that we can see today, the “Bird Sail” was developed by the Breton Roland Le Bail in 1982. Passionate about table sports, the Carnac computer was inspired by the flight of seagulls to develop this new type of concept with a structure. He uses it in the water, but also on the ground with skates or skis to move around. Unfortunately, it is still too early for the development of the wingfoil, largely challenged by the arrival of windsurfing.

    At the same time, the Legaignoux brothers (including the Bruno Quimperos) filed a patent for a wing with an inflatable structure which would give rise to the kitesurfing.

    In 1987, Tom Magruder invented the wind weapon, a wing connected to a windsurf board by a piece of pole, and demonstrated it in the gorges of the Columbia River by performing incredible jumps.

    New prototypes are emerging. In 2011 comes the Slingwing, which Robert Naish masters to perfection, but the discipline is not yet democratized.

    The democratization of the foil to speed things up

    It is finally the association – much later – of these two concepts which will give birth to the wingfoil wing that we know today. The Roland Le Bail wing will be equipped with this inflatable structure which will make it much lighter and above all easier to transport once folded up.

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    However, it is only since 2019 that the wingfoil has become a sport “trendy” nautical. And this thanks to the development of the foil, which allows the table to be taken out of the water and to increase the speed without braking in contact with the sea. Easy to practice, which requires compact equipment, the wingfoil has seduced many amateurs in a few years.

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    Which board for surf foil?

    THE surf foil boards are generally much shorter and wider than conventional boards. If you are a beginner, choose a board relatively long and high-capacity aluminum frame for easy climbing and stabilization.

    How to choose a surffoil ? Opt for a High Aspect foil if you are a confirmed surf-foiler, if you are looking for performance and reconnecting the waves without difficulty while maximizing speed. Choice of stick: The smaller the stick (70 cm), the easier it will be to start.

    Which foil for surf foil?

    What sheet to use on the surfboard

    • Stick length: rather short (about 65 cm), especially if you surf beachbreak type waves.
    • Front wing in foil : The surface of the kite adapts to the speed of the wave. The slower the wave (and the heavier the surfer), the more surface area is needed to fly at low speed.

    What type of boat to navigate the canals?

    Of course, the easiest way is to sail with a speedboat or a trawler. Some models adapt very well to this type of mixed navigation. I am thinking in particular of the Sierra de Antarès by Bénéteau, or the Trawlers of the same court.

    How to navigate in the channel? THE ESSENTIAL RULES OF NAVIGATION The maximum authorized speed is 5 to 8 km/h in the canals and 10 to 12 km/h in the rivers, in order to preserve the state of the banks. In some sections and near the ports the speed may be lower, the signs indicate this in this case.

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