Training on Aruba: Olympic Foil and Freestyle

I was locked in Aruba last year, and that’s when I realized Aruba has everything a windsurfer needs! The lifestyle here works perfectly for me. Combining all the different disciplines of freestyle, slalom and foiling with gym training, kiting and tennis is just what I am looking for. Besides that, I can work remotely from my laptop which is pretty cool!

I am from Norway and winter is great, but not if you are a windsurfer! You simply need to find a place to train with consistent wind! I teamed up with my friend Sarah-Quita to train on Aruba. I arrived the moment the wind kicked in, so timing was perfect. I joined the Dutch and Aruba foil team on their last week of Olympic iQFoil training here. Sarah-Quita had already trained with them for 5 weeks and I could see her great progress. Day one for me was pretty brutal! By a mistake I put a minus 2 shim on the back wing instead of the 0, which means lifting the board up was hard. Halfway into training I started to realized that foiling is ALL about setting up your gear perfectly! Day 2 and 3 I made sure to put the settings correctly and I also got to know my gear a bit more. I could finally start to enjoy and focus on progressing. It was hard to keep up with the team with less experience, but I told myself to stay calm and learn and much as I could from them. The game-changer for me was when we foiled along the whole island of Aruba from the Huts to Baby Beach. It was in total 85 kilometers. The dutch foil champion Huig foiled behind me and shouted some amazing tips for my downwind stance. Thank you Huig! That was all I needed to start pushing my speed. Team Aruba with Hense and Al as coaches kept the foil training routine and that has been amazing to join for the past 2 months! Thank you Team Aruba! 

Foiling in light wind is magical, but foiling in high wind is also pretty cool! But also so brutal! I have lost count of all the catapults. We take them daily when the wind blows perfectly for freestyle 4.4! Being a freestyler, it’s hard for your heart to not freestyle when the conditions are great, but with all the days here we will always get enough freestyle sessions too. The main spot at Barcadera was really on fire for weeks! We can look back at a nice water shoot with Artmando Multimedia.

Photo by the talented Artmando Multimedia

Apart from all the time on the water, I will say that the tennis lessons and gym sessions are high lights too. We try to normally leave at 6:45 just to make sure we are done with the workout around 8:30. There is so much more we want to do during the day so we have to start early. 

Some of the best exercises we have done are pull-ups, double unders with skipping rope, pump rowing, burpees, wall balls… We will normally do 4 rounds of 8 exercises. We both leave the gym happy every time with the effort we put in. Working out with a mask is the new normal, so you just have to get used to it! I thought I was passing out the first time, but you do get used to it! At this time I am just super grateful to be able to go to a gym! 

I am looking forward to be back competing on the PWA World Tour, but in the meantime, we keep sailing and training! Can’t wait to see more happy windsurfers on the water all around the world soon. Take care!