A full head down breaker is when a flyer can, from either a carve or layout, dive toward the center of the tunnel, facing the center throughout and perform a 540º barrel roll type maneuver and finish in a head down orientation, either to a carving movement and to a layout maneuver.
Before learning breakers head-down you should be able to perform barrel rolls while carving at lower speeds along with being comfortable performing head down half breakers. These barrel rolls should be performed with your chin up, looking into the center of the tunnel. The technique should be strong because when the speed of the tunnel is faster, any flaws in the technique will be much more noticeable. You should also already be comfortable executing belly and back flares, and half-breakers.
Your objectives in mastering this skill should be the following:
o First, create a diving belly flare maneuver and then at the end of the move, perform a belly-to-back 540° barrel roll.
o The technique should be performed while looking into the center of the tunnel and at the bottom of the flare and throughout the rotation.
Technique and Drills
In order to complete this skills successfully, keep these elements in mind:
- Begin carving out-face or belly-carving at a higher level in the tunnel. Create a dive or some descending energy and enter into a belly flare. At the bottom of the flare begin to barrel roll from your belly 540°, ending on your back.
- Use the diving energy or flare to ensure that you don’t ascend during the maneuver.
- Once you are on your back at the end of the rotation, use the back flare technique to continue the carve and return to head-down.
Post-flight questions / suggestions
- Were you able to maintain the carve during the technique?
- While performing the breaker did you manage to not ascend?
- Where you able to keep your chin up and maintain awareness of your position in the tunnel during and after the breaker?
Breakers are a fun trick to fly solo. Once you are comfortable flying them solo you can add them to a routine or begin flying them with others. If you haven’t already, check out the dynamic dive pool, it’s a great way to put together all of your skills!
What skill level is next?
This move simply acts as an efficient way to return to a head-down orientation as you end a back layout, whether it is to begin a subsequent layout, or enter, for example, an in-face or out-face carve, head-down.