One of the most popular activities we offer on our Belize island is windsurfing for beginners. Once our guests start out with our training program, there is always a line to use the equipment to practice their new skills. The secret lies with our first orientation using the land trainer, which allows students to learn the basics on the beach without having to fall in the water over and over. Then, when progressing to the water, our new style beginner boards make it easy since they are extra wide and stable. This permits newly anointed windsurfers to focus more on the sailing dynamics and less on balance.
Most people figure it out with little effort and within minutes are sailing back and forth across the calm waters of our lagoon. The biggest challenge still remains in developing ‘wind awareness’ however, and that does take some practice. Without an awareness of the direction one is sailing, it is easy to end up too far downwind after a few tacks and getting back to the beach is then a challenge. Fortunately, our guides are watching out for this and will paddle a kayak down to either tow people back or simply trade places with the student and sail the rig back to the beach. We always see 3-5 boards on the water when the wind is blowing!
[all photos by Hannah Stonehouse Hudson]