When I started windsurfing I took 3 ABK camps in quick succession, and that gave me a great foundation. Over the years I’ve done a few lessons or short clinics here and there, but nothing as thorough as ABK camps. I think lots of windsurfers are like me – we get a solid foundation and get comfortable with our skills and don’t think anything about taking an intensive clinic again.
It had been 15 years since Steve and I took an ABK Clinic. I jokingly referred to our trip to Bonaire in 1998 as our prenuptial agreement, since I started windsurfing before I met Steve and he had some catching up to do. This winter I revisited ABK Bonaire along with Janice Emerling and her cohort of Chicago friends (her Caribbean windsurfing buddies going back many years). It was great to work with Andy Brandt again, and his instructors Brendan Quinn and Derek Rijff really know their stuff. It’s amazing how they can break down every windsurfing move into understandable pieces, and how they can offer constructive critiques on body position tweaks that can make all the difference in completing a move. Even when Andy and Brendan were busy talking to other students about their technique issues on the water they could see me sailing in for critique and pick up on seemingly minor missteps that lead to improvements all around. They have unbelievable passion and enthusiasm for teaching windsurfing.
Taking an ABK clinic in Bonaire was a great way to get the most value out of a Caribbean trip because we worked hard every day. And even if you don’t score ideal planing conditions during a clinic the ABK team has lots of moves to teach everyone. I was a little disappointed that it was too windy for some beginner freestyle time on the water because I was so stoked watching the advanced freestylers hone their craft.
I heartily welcome ABK as a BABA Sponor. Thank you Coby for starting the conversation with Andy last fall. I encourage everyone to jump on the ABK bandwagon and take your first clinic, or your 5th, or your 10th. ABK will be in Dewey September 27 – 29. They have lots of other camps between now and then, including August in Bonaire, and spring and fall options in Hatteras. Check out their website for the full schedule. Time at an ABK Clinic pays huge dividends.
ABK generously donated tuition for a clinic to BABA. The drawing was held at the Season Opener Party on March 16. All BABA families (one entry per membership) who had renewed their membership by the party were included in the drawing. Long-time BABA member Roger Fitzgerald won. Congratulations Roger!