What Is a Hydrofoil?
The amazing creation of hydrofoils allows boards to fly across water with minimal resistance and friction. The design of the foil forces water that travels past it to accelerate downwards. This creates an equal force upwards that is able to lift the foil board out of the water. The foil needs to have some force to begin with and this can be achieved by catching a wave, holding a foil wing or using a SUP paddle. They can be used with many types of water sports boards, most notably surf foil boards, kite foil boards, and windsurf foil boards.
Hydrofoils are made from a few different materials - aluminum and carbon being quite common. Aluminum is a more affordable but heavier material, while carbon is more expensive but higher-end. Some foils are also made of alloys or combinations of composite materials.
Foils are formed by several parts: the mast, fuselage, front wing, back wing, and mounting plate. The front wing is especially important in creating the lift needed in foiling. Generally speaking, in a neutral position the board will want to lift so requires the rider to lean forward to level it. When pumping of course, you will need to lean much more forward to start the motion.
What Size Hydrofoil Do I Need?
Foils come in different designs and sizes, which all have an effect on the riding experience. The height of the mast and the size of the front wing are the most important factors, and you should pay extra attention to them.
If you are a more experienced rider, choose a foil with a high mast and a small, narrow front wing. These make the foil faster and better performing, but also harder to control. Furthermore, a foil with a small front wing requires more speed to take off in the water.
Hydrofoils with shorter masts and wider front wings are better for beginners and for calmer wind conditions. This is because they create more lift and are easier to control. Shorter masts are often popular with freestylers as they usually provide more responsive turning and handling.
You should also remember to pick a foil that is made for your foiling discipline. Some hydrofoils are made for a specific foiling discipline, while others can be used in different types of foiling.
Are you looking for a board that matches your foiling needs? Then have a look at our Foil Boards for different water sports.