Josh working out one of his signature switch stalefish 5′s while photographer Jason Lee gets up close and personal with his camera. photo: Cortese
Switch stalefish 540 w/ Josh Twelker
(as seen in the April 2012 issue of Alliance)
Just over a year ago Josh Twelker made the infamous Alliance “List” for this switch 540 with a late (after the handle pass) stalefish grab. Late-grabbed spins aren’t new by any means, but the fact that Josh was doing this one switch and adding a legit, stylish poke to it all really made our jaws drop. We figured it was time to get some more info from Josh on this bad boy and maybe you can start adding some unique late grabs to your repertoire… Don’t worry, we won’t judge you if you aren’t trying this switch right away…
STEP 1: EDGE
The type of edge you want to take on this trick is a slightly progressive edge. As I approach the wake, I mellow my edge just before hitting the wake.
STEP 2: POP
To get solid pop on this trick I approach the wake with a crouched position, and as I hit the wake I try to explode with my legs. I keep the handle in close and give it a tug as I’m releasing off the wake.
STEP 3: SPIN
As I initiate the spin I think of spinning a fluid and crouched 540 all the way through. I lead with my head/eyes and pull the handle to my back hip. This gets the spin started and I can reach for the handle pass. I try to spin the first half of the 5 quick so that I can get to the late grab faster and hold the grab longer.
STEP 4: GRAB
The thing that helps the most for the late grab is the right pop. If I have good pop on the 5, the board comes into my hand much easier. I’ve already made the handle pass, and being crouched with good pop usually has the board close to my hand. Grab, then poke.
STEP 5: SPIN (again)
Once I get the grab I try to keep turning my head to spot the landing, which keeps the rotation going and pulls around the last 180.
Q & A:
1. What are some things a rider can do to practice and build up to this trick? Start with late grab 360′s before going to 5?
JT: Most importantly you need a poppy switch 5. The thing that helped me the most on getting this grab was learning a late grabbed toeside backside 180. The landing is different but the lead into the grab is the same.
2. How did you think of this trick? Did someone or something in particular influence you?
JT: I thought of this trick because I was trying to think of ways to make my spins more unique and reinvent them. I’ve always thought late grabs on spins look fluid if they’re done right, and for some reason a late grabbed switch 5 came to me.
3. How long did it take for you to learn it? What was/is the hardest part?
JT: I learned the trick pretty quickly on the water but getting the trick to look the way I wanted was definitely the hardest part.
4. What are the three keys to doing this trick successfully?
JT: 1. Having a solid switch 5 with good pop.
2. Having late grabbed toeside backside 180s. The grab comes around pretty similar to the switch 5.
3. Practicing the trick on a trampoline to train your body how to get into the spin and grab.
5. What’s your best piece of advice for poking out tricks with style? Yoga?
JT: Have fun on your wakeboard and cool things will happen.
This doesn’t look like a switch stalefish 540, does it? We’re pretty sure Josh intended it that way… photo: Cortese