• You're leaning out over the water, arms extended and tooling along, when suddenly the wind dies. Instinctively, both your arms pull in the sail as you work to get your body back over the board. Right? When you're falling, you need more power in the sail to counter the weight of your body, and pulling in with both arms doesn't achieve this. In fact, if anything, pulling the sail in reduces power and forces the sail to fall to windward, where eventually you'll end up falling back into the water with the sail on top of you. Instead, stay hiked out over the water and use your arms independently. As you begin to fall to windward, push your front arm away from you while pulling in your back arm (unless you're oversheeted to begin with), which will expose more sail area to the wind and help you to power the sail back up again. Learning to move your arms independently is pretty important and comes in handy with increasing the power in your sail during other moves as well. Water-starting, beach starting and accelerating out of tacks and jibes all require the ability to maneuver the arms independently. In addition, the concept can keep the sail from pulling you over by sheeting out and losing power when you need to. By eliminating the two-arm pull, you'll up your ratio of completions to failures in many maneuvers, as well as stay dry a little longer when you get overpowered. Give it a shot.

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