Tofino Surfing: The Backside Re-entry
by Pete Devries, Tofino
The backside re-entry is a fairly basic move, but it requires excellent
timing and body positioning to be completed effectively.
Start your bottom turn with a good amount of speed toward the steepest
part of the wave where the lip is just about to break. Once you’ve
started the bottom turn, fully commit to it, and drive through it to
gain momentum and to get completely vertical.
Your eyes should be focused on the lip you are about to hit, and
you should have your shoulders rotated so your upper body is facing
lip. Rotating your shoulders will allow you to get as vertical as
possible. Your knees should be bent with most of the pressure on your
Proceed straight up the wave until your board hits the breaking lip.
Now you need to change directions so your momentum does not carry
you off the top of the wave.
When about one third of your board is above the lip turn your leading
shoulder down back towards the beach. This will cause your lower body
and your board to follow your upper body and rotate toward the beach.
You should be leaning over your front foot with a low center of gravity
while extending your back leg. The back leg extension will push your
tail out the back of the wave, adding spray and style to the move,
and it may cause your tail to slide so be ready. At this point you
will be facing back down toward your landing place, and you may get
stuck in the falling lip while you’re re-entering the wave. Stay
low and centered over your front foot until the wave pulls you back
in. Once you feel your momentum going down the wave switch your weight
from your front foot to your back foot in order to stop yourself from
nose diving. Absorb the landing with your knees and continue to ride
down the line.
To make this maneuver more challenging you can extend your board
further above the lip, and you can try to go over vertical on the way
backside re-entry is a move that is great for steep point breaks
because they are easy to do over and over again plus they never get
Backside Re-entry tips