Difficulty Rating: 7 (tricky but not Latin)
Board: Regular shorty, but maybe a touch longer/stiffer
Waves: 2-5ft ones that you face with your bum.
Photos: Andrew Christie
Marc is a 22-year-old goofyfoor from Hossegor, France. You might see him in a red wetsuit, ripping frontside or backside with his pals Charles Martin and Joan Duru. Just in case you don’t have the occasion to ask him personally for tips for a better backside, read on.
“I love these kind of waves, especially backside: there is a bit of size, some nice walls and some power in the swell. In this sequence, things start obviously by the take off where I’ll be also eyeing the section and that will determine the kind of turns I’m gonna do. Here, coming from behind, I knew I would get back into the open face fairly easily, ideal for a straight bottom turn to top turn combination.
– I love going straight down after the take off looking at the beach, delaying things a bit, then going straight back up as vertical as I can go.
– That would be one bit of advice: the straighter the better, in your bottom turn then in your backhand gaff! - I wanted to hit the section hard, that’s what I love the most, not simply putting the board up there, but doing some damage, throwing some buckets you know… Good turns come from power and flow. You wanna push hard in your bottom turn, use those legs… open your shoulders and unleash.
– Another tip is use your eyes: Where you are looking during the different phases of that turn: I first look at the beach, then at the lip or top the wave then into the turn, I look at my tail… also pushing hard on my front leg to get more release. Style-wise, I can’t be of any help if your bum is sticking out on your turns, I don’t pay attention to style when I surf, I don’t look at my hand placement or don’t check my hair between turns. The only way to improve is have a mate telling you what to do or get him to video you if he can be bothered…
– I look at the backside attack of guys like Dane or Kelly obviously and also some good goofyfooters like Bobby Martinez and Joan Duru…
– For juicier situations: I grab my rail in that kind of bottom turn when waves are bigger or more water movement in front of the wave.
– Boardwise, something a bit longer, a bit heavier backside can do the job, as usually your footing is stronger backside, and you can push harder bottom turning on your heels than toes. I love board with a bit more rail and edge, a normal board, nothing too fishy… In contests, I tend to use shorter boards.
– For the red wetsuits, it’s nothing to do with the revolution, I’m not a communist. I just wanted something different, not too flashy, just different.”