We prepared a comprehensive guide for those who would like to explore the in-depths of windsurfing. You can find below all the essential information on its historical origins as well as how to do it with the required terminology and detailed equipment list. The most popular spots in Türkiyeand from around the world to embark on a thrilling windsurfing experience are also waiting for you.
What is Windsurfing?
Windsurfing is one of the most popular sea sports, combining sea and wind as tools at the beautiful beaches around the world. The practice of windsurfing is simply controlling the wind while you are balancing yourself on the water. A windsurfing board is usually 2 to 2.5 meters with a sail called rig connected to it which can move to all directions. The size of the sail changes depending on the windsurfing area and the skills of a windsurfer. It can seem hard at first but it is actually easy to grasp with good windsurfing training. Nowadays, there are many windsurfing schools you can find easily.
History of Windsurfing
Windsurfing is a combination of surfing and sailing, and is known to be created first in 1948 by Newman Darby. In 1968 in California, Henry Hoyle Schweitzer and Jim Drake worked on windsurfing and developed this sport to what we know today. Windsurfing is really popular nowadays and you can see many windsurfers in the summer season on most of the beaches around the world.
Windsurfing has its own language. Due to the mechanism of its equipment, windsurfers came up with the names to make teaching the techniques that they found easier. Many of these terms are common to sailing and sea sports. Some of the important terms that you should check before windsurfing are;
- Beach Start: is the technique of sailing close to the beach in lower levels of water.
- Daggerboard: is a large centreboard used for providing resistance from the sides.
- Eye of the Wind: refers to the direction of the wind.
- Fin: is a type of foil utilized in order to support the stability the board from its underside and tail.
- Gust: a temporary but strong wind.
- Harness: refers to set of equipment used to fasten the body to the rig.
- Lift: is the act of sailing the board forward.
- Mast: is a pole utilized to hold the sail in an upward position.
- Nose: refers to the front tip of the board.
- Offshore: is the direction of the wind when it blows off the shore.
- Port: refers to the direction left of a person when facing the front side of the board.
- Rig: is the act of assembling all the parts and extensions.
- Sail: is so called the engine of a sailing boat as it delivers the required power.
- Tail: refers to the back point of the boat.
- Universal Joint (UJ): is a part of the mast which allows for more flexible moves.
- Uphaul: is a tool attached to the bottom of the board to facilitate its removal off the water.
How to do Windsurfing?
Windsurfing is a sport that is fun to learn. You can learn different maneuvers and techniques like water starts, jumps, jibes, tacks, 360's with each training. It will give you the space to create your own style if you are patient and you keep practicing. You should start by learning the windsurfing equipment to understand the process better. For this, you can check the Windsurfing Equipment List below.
If you know the equipment, you can try it on the land to learn the basics. You need to balance yourself on the water and knowing how to use the rig is crucial. Then you can go into the water where the daggerboard is not touching the ground and try to stand on the board as you did on the land. Pull the mast to yourself with the windsurfing trapeze and keep your balance. After you maintain your balance, the rest is to control the wind. Take hold of the mast with both hands and let it swing. You should do this to sense where the wind comes from. Keep the mast straight up and practice it till you feel ready to use the wind. If you practice enough, you will enjoy the feeling of being a in harmony with the wind.
The best way to learn this sport is to attend a windsurfing school, which you can find in many cities.
Windsurfing Equipment List: What Equipment is Needed for Windsurfing?
The windsurfing kit can be divided into two categories as the board and the rig. These parts are connected to each other with a Universal Joint (UJ) and are essential to windsurfing.
Windsurfing board is very similar to a surfboard and the size of it changes between 2 to 2.5 meters depending on the conditions of surfing area and skill level of the windsurfer as mentioned before. The boards can be made of Epoxy, Fibreglass, Expanded Polystyrene Foam, PVC or Carbon Sandwich in a way so that the top of it is hard and the bottom is slippery.
There are one or more fins at the bottom of the board. There is also centerboard much like daggerboard in the middle of the surfboard. Fins, daggerboards and centerboard help to control drifting and keep the surfboard stable while windsurfing on water. On the top, there are foot straps that help the windsurfer to hold on to the board.
The rig can rotate freely on the board and consists of a sail, mast, and boom. The boom is the part that you hold the rig and the mast is used for support. There is a cord that you use to pull the sail which is connected to the boom. In the complete surfing position, windsurfing trapeze helps connect the rig and the surfer. Trapeze is also used in kitesurfing.
The areas where the windsurfing is done have lots of wind and waves. To prevent discomfort and injuries, windsurfing clothing is designed to provide safety and comfort. It is recommended to use helmet, rescue coats and shoes for safety. Wetsuit and sunglasses will make windsurfing easier.
When is the Best Time for Windsurfing?
Even though professional windsurfers do not depend on the weather conditions so much, suitable wind is a requirement of the sport. If you are new to this sport you should prefer the summer and places with good wind. Wind speed and the direction are the things you should check. These indicators vary depending on the place and every place has their windsurfing seasons. You can check the wind speed and directions of the place that you want to visit and search for the best values for your level. For example, 7-18 kts will be enough for beginners.
Most of the windsurfing places have suitable conditions to do this sport, and most of them are summer places. Summer might be better for beginners as most of the windsurfing schools are operating in the summer season. The weather conditions are the base of windsurfing and you can have exciting experiences if you listen to the nature.
Best Spots for Windsurfing in Türkiye
Türkiye is one of the best countries where you can do windsurfing, with its highly developed sea sport tourism and beautiful beaches. From north to south, many cities of Türkiye are welcoming windsurfers from all around the world. There are also many windsurfing schools in these cities where you can start to learn the sport.
You can find windsurfing equipment easily in Türkiye but if you are a professional windsurfer and want to bring our own equipment, you can check here to learn about the prices and the rules of travelling with your equipment.
Antalya is one of the most touristic cities in Türkiye and has many beaches for sea sports. Also many meetings, festivals, and competitions for windsurfing are held in this city. The best spot in the city for windsurfing is Patara which is an ancient Lycian town. Be ready for an exciting windsurfing experience in this city with your Antalya flight ticket.
The biggest island of Türkiye, Gökçeada is another popular spot for windsurfing. It is suitable for windsurfing 300 days of the year. You have a great chance here to meet with windsurfers from around the world and learn their style. Aydıncık beach is the best spot on the island and is preferred for its calm environment. There are windsurfing clubs where you can learn the sport. You can go to Kabatepe from İstanbul, with an hour and a half car ride, and take the ferry to the island. If you want to do windsurfing in the windy seas of the Aegean Sea you can get your İstanbul flight ticket and take advantage of the car rental service Pegasus provides.
İstanbul is one of the biggest and the most important touristic cities in Türkiye. Windsurfing is popular in İstanbul and there are many different locations to try. You can get your İstanbul flight ticket and experience the windsurfing on the seas where the great empires like Ottomans and Byzantines were sailing.
Büyükçekmece is one of the biggest districts of the city. It is located on the European coast of İstanbul. There are many windsurfing schools provided by the municipality.
Caddebostan is located in the district named Kadıköy on the Anatolian side. It is also close to Sabiha Gökçen Airport. Caddebostan has one of the oldest beaches of İstanbul. Windsurfing is popular here and there are several schools and clubs where you can learn this sport. With the view of the islands of İstanbul you can windsurf and enjoy Kadıköy here.
Kilyos is located in the north of İstanbul on the European side. You can find the best winds in İstanbul in Kilyos. There are many schools for windsurfing and for kitesurfing. You can feel the power of the Black Sea on your sail in Kilyos.
Muğla is a natural and touristic heaven in the south of Türkiye. It has the longest coast of Türkiye and has so many beautiful bays and beaches. Sea sports tourism is also famous in Muğla and lately got famous with Akyaka kitesurfing. So many windsurfers and kitesurfers visit Muğla every year. Muğla, which was home to many Ionian civilizations, provides a great opportunity to meet professional windsurfers and kitesurfers.
All the towns of Muğla have amazing natural beauties and various historical heritages. There are two airports in Muğla, one in Bodrum and one in Dalaman. You have two amazing routes for your trip from these airports to the windsurfing locations. We especially recommend you to visit Akyaka if you are interested in kitesurfing. With flights to Dalaman and Bodrum, Pegasus Airlines offers a great holiday in this beautiful city where the green meets the blue.
Akyaka is located in the center of the Gulf of Gökova, in the middle of the peninsulas of Bodrum and Marmaris. Akyaka became so popular with mainly kitesurfing tourism. So many kite surfers visit the long sandy beach of Akyaka every year. With the explosion in windsurfing and kitesurfing activities, many sea sports schools opened in this small town.
Located on the Marmaris peninsula, Datça is the place where the Mediterranean Sea meets the Aegean Sea. Thanks to its unique locations it has great winds for windsurfing. Datça has a long windsurfing history. Many windsurfers played with the winds in this calm Aegean town. If you are also interested in ancient Greek history, wine and delicious seafood we recommend you to visit Datça.
İzmir is the biggest metropolitan city in the Aegean region of Türkiye and is also famous for its windy beaches, unique food, culture and history. İzmir has been a popular place for windsurfing for years and it is home to a big part of sea sports tourism in Türkiye. It also is home to the most important cities of ancient Greek civilizations like Ephesus where the Temple of Artemis, one of the seven wonders of the world, was built. You can get your İzmir flight ticket and enjoy the ancient winds of the Aegean Sea with windsurfing.
Alaçatı is the windsurfing center of Türkiye. It is located in Çeşme district on the west coast of İzmir. We can name Alaçatı as the city of wind because it’s windy every day of the year. That is the reason why windsurfing got so popular in this old town of the Aegean region. You can find so many windsurfing schools and places to get windsurfing equipment. Alaçatı is one of the places you should definitely visit for windsurfing.
Best Windsurfing Destinations in the World
There are many places in the world where you can have great windsurfing experiences and meet with windsurfers from around the world. You can find some of the best places in the list below.
Barcelona is one of the most touristic cities in Spain also has become one of the best sea sport centers. Barcelona is also known for its award-winning urban design and well protected Catalonian history. Windsurfing at the beaches of Barcelona is an experience to you’ll never forget. You can get your Barcelona flight ticket for a great holiday in one of the biggest sea sports centers in Europe.
Casablanca is the largest city of Morocco and has a coast in the Atlantic Ocean. It is also known as the biggest city of the Berber culture. Windsurfing on the Atlantic Ocean in Casablanca, one of the best spots on the coast of North Africa, is an unforgettable experience. Get your Casablanca flight ticket today to have a great holiday.
Marseille is the best city for sea sports tourism in France. The amazing French-Mediterranean scenery combined with windsurfing, provides an amazing adventure for its visitors. Get your Marseille flight ticket by Pegasus Airlines and have a wonderful windsurfing experience in Marseille.
Islands of Greece – Athens
The Aegean Sea is one of the best seas for windsurfing. Greek islands around Athens are great locations for the sea sports. Islands of Greece are also famous for their touristic sights, great sunsets, the clear blue sea and beautiful beaches. Get your Athens flight ticket today and don’t miss the chance to windsurf in the Aegean sea.
Once capital of the Roman Empire, Rome is a city of history and love. Windsurfing is getting more and more popular around this city with many windsurfers starting to come here. Surfing on the waves with the winds of the Mediterranean Sea will give you an unforgettable windsurfing experience. Check out the flights to Rome and get ready for a great holiday.
If you are planning to travel with your equipment, there might be additional costs. You can click here to check the extra services price table.
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