As you become more comfortable belly carving at slow to moderate wind speeds, it will be at this point, you will increase the wind speed in order to develop a more vertical carving position. The fundementals of what you learn for the belly carving maneuver will mostly apply to this more vertical head down carve. With the wind speed being progressively higher, you will need to progress in to the vertical orientation in stages in order to understand how to control the steeper pitch and faster movements, along with gaining the correct visiual picture throughout the carve, learning to open your awareness to see around you.
Before learning to carve out-face head-down at higher speeds you should have first learned to belly carve at lower speeds to develop the correct body position and then progressively turned the wind up to higher speeds. The higher speeds force your body into a more vertical orientation, which we differentiate as head-down.
Your objectives in mastering this skill should be the following:
o To carve out-facing head-down in a consistent circle around the tunnel.
o The carve should be done in the correct body position, with you legs straight and together and you body as long as possible, with a slight arch in your chest.
o The carve should be performed in both directions.
Completing this skill is one of the fundamental skills that will open up lots of new combinations in your dynamic routines.
Technique and Drills
- In order to begin mastering this maneuver, aim to accomplish these techniques:
o Enter into a head down orientation from either carving up off your belly or a transition like a bottom loop or layout.
o Because you have already developed your skills from lower speeds, the challenge now is to adapt to the faster speeds.
o While carving at the faster speeds, check your body position and make sure you are still keeping good habits. There should be no signs of static flying positions, which can tend to show up at the faster speeds.
Post-flight questions / suggestions
- How did your performance match the initial objectives?
- How much control have you managed, versus just going fast in circles?
- Were you able to maintain the correct body position?
- Did you maintain a consistent level and shape of the carve?
Now that you have learned to carve both in-facing and out-facing head down you can begin to learn how to switch between these two skills. As you progress, be sure that you are comfortable out-facing and in-facing in both directions along with carving at different wind speeds and adjusting the size of the circle that you are carving.
What skill level is next?
Head Down Carve Switches
Once you can perform head down carves comfortably, you will utilize those skills with some additional instruction to learn how to carve from one direction to another direction or from one visual to another seamlessly.