During the weekend, I tried my hand at windsurfing, in a three-hour lesson organised by Constantwind, a sea sports school located in Changi.
Windsurfing, a surface water sport that combines elements of surfing and sailing, has a windsurfer standing on a board about two to three metres long, powered by wind on a sail.
When I made my way down, I had absolutely no idea what was going to happen, as I had never done windsurfing before. I wondered what we would be taught there and whether I would be able to master the sport in the short three hours that we had, for this lesson.
Started with some basic theory lessons
As soon as I had arrived and checked into the class, we started off with some theory about wind direction and the basics of windsurfing. I found this all rather confusing. I’ll admit that I had some trouble understanding it, as everything was quite new to me.
Using the Windsurfing Simulators
And there was no time to simply sit there and absorb the information. Soon after that, due to the limited time available, we headed onto the windsurfing simulators, to get some practical lessons.
Here, we learned how to hoist the sail, how to make use of the wind direction to control the board to head in the direction that we wanted and how to “rescue” ourselves if we were heading straight towards the rocks, among other things.
Finally, I felt as though I was getting the hang of things and simply couldn’t wait to get into the water. The earlier theory lessons were slowly beginning to make a little bit more sense now.
Out into the open water to try windsurfing
Once the instructor felt that everyone had understood the basic terms, we were then taken out to the windsurfing boards, which had been anchored out in the open sea. This was a few minutes boat ride away.
I was feeling both nervous and excited!
Hard to maintain my balance and hoist the sail
But the moment I set foot onto the windsurfing boat proper, the first thing that I realised was that it was really wobbly and I really had to work at keeping my balance!
Hoisting the sail was also proving to be much more difficult than it had been on land. In fact, I lost count of how many times I fell into the water whilst attempting to do so! And not surprisingly, the water tasted so salty!
But eventually, after what felt like many frustrating hours to me, I finally found myself standing up on the board. It was an accomplishment! Yes, it had taken some time, but I realised that I was slowly getting used to the sport of windsurfing!
Feeling the change in the board’s direction based on the wind
Soon after, the instructor felt that I was ready and removed the anchor from my board. This was truly when I began to feel the wind moving my board and felt the change in board direction. I’ll say that it wasn’t very easy standing up on the board, trying to maintain my balance and manoeuvre the sail at the same time, though! And yes, I did fall into the water a few more times.
While the wind at the beginning wasn’t very strong though, it progressively built up over the course of the morning to move my board along. After falling off a few more times, I was getting pretty exhausted and low on energy – but my board was in action at last!
But by the end of the three-hour session, I was getting used to the feel of things and was actually starting to enjoy myself, too. The board was moving in the general direction that I intended and I was really feeling the thrills of being out there, alone with my board in the open water.
Enjoyable but tiring session
The windsurfing session finished all too soon and by the time it was over, I found myself wishing that I could have another shot at this very fun but exhausting sport. It was a really great workout though and I thoroughly had fun that morning.