ERIC JACKSON CAN THROW DOWN. The Jackson Kayak founder claims four Freestyle World Championship titles, thanks in part to his ability to break complicated play moves into their constituent parts, and repeat them on demand. So if you want to learn an advanced playboating maneuver like the blunt to McNasty, you want to talk to E.J.
“It’s one of the most fun combo moves you can do on a wave or in a hole, and it’s also one of the hardest,” Jackson says. Basically, you initiate a back-surf via the blunt, immediately throw your stern straight up over your head, and then execute a front loop. Easy, right? “Once you get it, it’s not that difficult to get the move down,” Jackson says. “What’s cool about combos like this, is that they can actually go easier than doing the moves separately sometimes.” But first, you have to know how to do the moves separately.
THE BLUNT: It’s simply a 180-degree rotation, pivoting over the bow with the boat angled at least 45 degrees-doing it vertically is awesome. The blunt is a great way to go from a front-surf to a back-surf. Simply carve across a wave or hole with one angle, drop your opposite edge and throw the stern straight over your head. It also leads you into a lot of cool combos and other moves, too.
THE MCNASTY: This is a crazy way to do a front loop. You’re literally throwing a front loop out of a back-surf. You spin to get yourself into a back-blast. Once you’re backwards, you drop your edge, take your opposite blade and pry the bow under the water, which lifts the stern up. Continue to pry until you get your body upstream. The key here is to turn your head and look straight upstream. Square up your hands, tuck for a front loop, take a strong loop stroke, and do a front flip out of it.
BLUNT TO MCNASTY: The key is to make sure you bring the blunt down with your stern pointed in the direction you want to do the McNasty. When you do your blunt, bring the stern all the way back to around 11 or 1 o’clock, depending on which side you’re doing it to, until it is aimed back into the middle of the wave or hole. What this allows you to do is to drop your edge that you need to get the McNasty up. It’s going to squeeze between the green water and the foam pile, so think about going light and fast on the blunt and keep the stern coming around. As soon as your stern starts touching down, make sure you get your pry stroke in and pull yourself hard into the foam pile. This way, you can slingshot back off the hole into the McNasty. The harder you pull yourself downstream into the foam, the more retentive you’ll be and the more you’ll get thrown upstream.
– As told to Dave Costello