| By Kent Senatore
North Shore, Oahu
The bottom turn to top turn combination is the most
basic of combos, but it’s essential to learn and
perfect it if you wish to progress to the next level.
Timing is everything with this combo. A solid bottom
to top combo will put you on the lip with speed, but
a poorly timed bottom or top turn can cause all sorts
of problems. Here’s a basic outline of the maneuver.
1. Start by taking off and dropping to the bottom of
the wave. Go about a foot or two into the flats in front
of the wave before you start to make your turn.
2. Weight your inside rail and lean towards the face
of the wave, continue to turn with weight on the inside
rail until the nose of your board is pointing at the
lip. Look directly at the spot on the lip you wish to
3. Now begin transferring your weight to your outside
rail. Here’s where the timing comes in. You have
to start your top turn before you get to the lip. The
goal is to have the apex of your turn touch the point
on the lip your aiming for. The size of the wave will
determine how long to wait before starting the top turn.
Timing this transition from rail to rail is the key to
the combo, and will take time and practice to prefect,
but once you master this combo you’ll be well on
your way to ripper status! Just remember that while these
maneuvers can be done on longboards
and retro surfboards, they
are easier to perform on shortboard
surfboards due to their narrower outline and shorter
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