1. Use a bigger board
– Start with a bigger (thicker) board to perfect your rail work, pay attention to your feet' placement and pressure.
When performing a bottom turn it’s important to not put too much of your weight on the front foot since that can stall your board or make you fall into the wave.
2. Surf the pocket
You want your position on the wave to be as good as possible and generate as much speed as you can, which you will get at the peak of the wave, aka the pocket.
– Catch the wave on or near the steepest part, the pocket, which helps to get the speed and projection that you need to do the bottom turn.
– The next step is to work on the compression movements. Compress your lower body and bend your knees to get maximum control and balance as you surf down the face of the wave.
4. Take off straight
– Learn how to take off straight, perpendicular to the beach. This will help you to work on the turn at the bottom of the wave efficiently.
5. Wave selection
– Surf waves that allow you to work on your bottom turn. Reef breaks or pointbreaks are suitable spots for you to improve your bottom and top turn manoeuvres.
– It is important to get the timing right. Don't rush to find the perfect timing of execution, let the wave guide you.
7. Your breathing
– Breathing efficiently will also improve your body movement, so look for some breathing exercises on the internet to help you.
– Use surfskate on land to perform and perfect your bottom turn using drills specifically made to develop your skills.
Check out this blog post on how to use surfskate to level up your surfing.
9. Feet placement
– Work on your feet placement on the board, which will allow you to turn more vertically without losing speed and control.
10. Watch others and don’t be afraid
– Look at pro surfers doing it and try to execute the same movement. Have someone film you on land in the water so you can analyze and improve your movements by correcting yourself. You can also look for a good coach that will set goals for you and help you with video analysis.
And one last thing: don't be afraid of falling, we need to fall to rise again!
How to do a bottom turn on a longboard?
João argues that you should follow the same tips and advice for doing a bottom turn on a longboard as a shortboard.
Want to know more? Here’s our surf tutorial on how to do a bottom turn