How To Ride a Mini Simmons
. . . initially felt a little squirrelly but managed to get it on rail - then tried to hang on for dear life - (insanely fast) and crashed spectacularly.

How To Ride a Mini Simmons

Location: Trail1 just south of SanO.
Time: Early am – it was jumbled peaks – low tide drainers –  sets were solid HH-OH.

A little bigger than what i was hoping with the 1st session – but i was so psyched there was no way i wasn’t going.  I can tell you it paddles well – wasn’t sure if i was going to even make it out to the lineup but did so with not too much difficulty.  First wave – i took backside – initially felt a little squirrelly but managed to get it on rail – then tried to hang on for dear life – (insanely fast) and crashed spectacularly.

The first session – i managed to catch at least 6-7 set waves – making all of the drops except one (the board decided to ride that one without me) – after the drop was for the most part trying to adjust to the speed of it while trying to find the sweet spot on the board – i felt like i was out of control for the most part but managed a few turns.  I was amazed at how easy it was catching waves and how well it did dropping in on steep waves – considering it has literally no rocker.

The biggest thing for me was trying to adjust to the speed – i’ve owned 5-6 different “fish” shaped boards and nothing i had previously ridden compared to the speed of this board.  Friday night – i re-watched video of Tyler Warren, RK, etc and did a little poking around for mini-simmons forums on the web – and the best tip i found was “stay low with a narrow stance”.  The first session i was using a pretty wide stance.

Saturday – was session #2 – again at Trails – the conditions were chest high glassy peaks – low tide.  I keep repeating the mantra “stay low stay low”  and  tried putting the tips to use – got back on the tail – stayed low and kept my feet closer to together and i think i was also a little more prepared for the speed.  I think it was about the 2nd or 3rd wave – it just clicked – frontside bottom turn – felt like i was in control and driving it through the turn – instead of just riding it.  After that – I had soooo much fun – catching a lot of waves and had a couple of really late takeoffs that had some of the guys in the lineup were trippin on.

What i noticed is that it loves a steeper wave – usually this location gets walled up pretty good on a south swell – which would be perfect for this board – but this weekend it was short jumbled peaks.  Sunday – the swell dropped off considerably – waist high – jumbled peaks – but not nearly as much energy behind as Fri/Sat.  I caught a lot waves – just trying to get as much board time as i could.

Overall – the first weekend on it was a success – i love the board – definitely a learning curve – but i think i am off to a really good start with it.   One thing i noticed today is that my legs are more sore than my arms – with each session it seemed easier to paddle.  I think riding it is all about body position and really using your legs (more than just your feet) to put it on the rail.  The first session was a little intense having never ridden a mini-simmons – much less in pumping surf – but i have enough of a feel for it now – that i’ll definitely be ready for the next swell.

~Greg, First Time On A Mini Simmons

Derek, Mini Simmons Shaper

Shaper | Lover of the Sea

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  • Just saw this post – i don’t have the tail/nose dims off the top of my head – but the length is 6’6″ and width is 23″. It is a custom shaped “Fourke” model from Hydrodynamica. Yeah – i know – 6’6″ is long for a mini-simmons – but i’m also 53 yrs old – so the extra length makes it a little easier to get to the right spot on days like yesterday here in SoCal where you have shifty peaks etc. So just to add to the original post – feel like i am getting the board wired – front side is sooo much fun just burying the rail and carving – the board is also really easy to ride in the pocket … only thing i’m still kinda figuring out is that i am occasionally stalling it a little too much. Seems like the balance of the board is real sensitive to the front foot placement and there is a small line between stepping on the gas and stalling. Backside is also fun – i think i have the backside bottom turn figured out – but still working on getting it to release off the top for the cut-back without losing too much momentum – i think i am probably a little slow in initiating the turn back down the face – but i also think the quad setup has a little to do with it as well. I absolutely love the board – i get stopped nearly every time i go out – with someone wanting to take a look at it. I have a trip coming up beginning of next year to Nicaragua – definitely plan on bringing it!

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