Textbook¿Taj Burrow

Setting up for a stall and a tube like this is more than just the steps involved, it’s about sacking up. Face it, how many times has a situation like this come up and you either chickened out or raced the wave? Tube mastery comes through grace under pressure and sheer practice, but more than anything, you need to forget the fact that there’s a chance you’re gonna get pounded. The other day, Mavericks psycho Jeff Clark was at our office and we asked what he did when he’s held under. His reply was simple, he puts himself in another place and snaps out of it when it’s time to come back up. So learn these steps, get tumbled a few times, and become a tube master.

Step One: The wave is setting up for Taj, so he’s setting his line with the bottom turn. It’s all about timing. Instead of aiming it straight down the line, Taj is projecting himself a little more forward in order to let the wave catch up¿a little back-foot heavy to slow down.

Step Two: Still ahead of the tube, he’s now setting a line, crouching down, and putting more pressure on his back foot. Since he’s in the trough, he has to crouch down even more to avoid getting hit by the lip. His knees are bent and his right hand is feeling the face of the wave, while at the same time, slowing himself down even more.

Step Three:Now his speed is slow¿the tube’s caught up with him, and he’s leaning slightly back in a more relaxed stance. Now he simply holds his line and lets the tube get ahead. If it gets too far ahead, he’s uses his front foot as an accelerator. The more pressure he applies, the faster he goes.

Steps Four Through Six:His hard work’s done, now he’s just enjoying the view.