The threesixty (360) is a benchmark move that looks good if done in the right style in the critical section of the wave.
They are an important part of many combination manoeuvres, and one of the most enjoyable basic moves to learn.
Like any move speed is essential but, unlike most moves, it has to be controlled – when you’re learning to do spins, speed can make the move more difficult. Spinners can be performed after a cutback to produce an impressive combination move or on a sloping part of the wave. If the move is performed in a flat section it makes it more difficult (and looks lame). When you’ve gained a bit of speed, the first step is to release the rail. This is done by bottom turning towards the top of the wave, flattening your board out and lifting your legs out of the water.
The second step is to put your weight on your inside rail and throw yourself into the rotation using your head and upper body while looking over your shoulder at where you’re going. This will initiate the rotation and the spin will begin. At first this rotation will be fairly slow but with practice it will become quicker. It’s really important to cross your legs up behind you and arch your back. You’re aiming to centre your weight in the middle of your board, creating a central point to spin from – like a spinning top.
To complete the manoeuvre you need to return to the direction you were heading. Stop the spin by dropping your flippers back into the water and returning to the standard trim position – you can then bottom turn back into the trim. If the manoeuvre has been performed on a steep part of the wave then you should shift your weight onto the bottom corner of your board so you don’t nose-dive when you come back down the wave. Once mastered you can start to perform 360s on different parts of the wave and – not only will you have learnt the prerequisite to entering competitions – but you will look pretty smooth to your mate paddling back out.