Tofino surfing: 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 the 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 back foot. 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 up. The 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 boring.
Backside Re-entry tips: