Travel Team | Apr 22, 2022
Electric mobility and hydrofoil technology have become popular trends in the outdoor sports industry.
Electric hydrofoil surfboards, or eFoil boards, combine these two trends to create an experience like no other.
At first glance, an eFoil board can be confused with a regular surfboard, until you look underneath and find the wings and stabilizers that help you fly over the water.
The boards run solely on electricity. They are controlled by the rider using a joystick-like device that increases the speed when the trigger is pulled.
As the board moves through the water gaining speed, the wing underneath allows the board to generate lift. Suddenly, the board is out of the water and the rider is flying. With less friction from the waves, the eFoil board enables the rider to go further for longer.
Christine Hajzak, 53 from Virginia Beach, Virginia, rode an eFoil board in September 2021 through AF Wake, a water sports school.
Along with her partner Mark, Hajzak rented a two-hour lesson on Lake Gaston, which sits on the North Carolina and Virginia border.
Hajzak said riding the eFoil board felt like “pure freedom.” She said it truly feels like you’re flying.
You start on your stomach like you’re on a surfboard, said Hajzak. Then you work on gaining speed. Once you’re really moving, you can transition to your knees. When you get your balance, you stand. Now you are gliding over the water.
The biggest issue Hajzak experienced was trying to find her balance while gaining speed. She said typically, if you lose your balance, you have a natural reaction to squeeze your hand, which, in this case, just makes you move faster, and therefore, fall faster.
She said you must learn how to not get anxious while riding. Relaxing will keep you from losing your footing and falling.
However, once she got the hang of it, she said it was “amazingly fun.” She was able to learn in 30 minutes, leaving her and her partner an hour and a half to have fun and enjoy cruising over the waters.
“It truly feels like flying,” Hajzak said. The scene is beautiful as you soar over the waters on the eFoil board with the wind in your hair and the water glistening in front of you.
“It looks like you’ve got this person that’s flying a magic carpet across the surface of the water,” said Rudi Miklosvary, a general manager at Fliteboard, an eFoil company. This immediately creates a sense of intrigue for the watcher, thinking, “can I do that?”
While flying across the glistening waters, there is no noise from an engine like a jet ski would create or from the splashing waves. There is complete silence. This allows the rider to enjoy the nature and scenes that surround them.
Hajzak found that the eFoil board was not harsh on the body at all. “As a 50 plus-year-old woman, that’s a beautiful thing,” she said. The lack of turbulence and bouncing helps prevent future headaches or body aches that follow other watersports.
If given the opportunity, she would love to ride atop the waves on an eFoil board again. She would even consider buying one. Except you can’t just buy one, she said, you need to share the experience with someone, and the boards certainly do not come cheap.
Electric mobility is taking over the outdoor sports industry. This comes with the push for environmentally friendly experiences, like using an eFoil, that are both fast and thrilling.
“I think electric sporting equipment is going to be a huge change for the way that we enjoy the outdoors,” said Hajzak. “I just think it allows you to enjoy the experience of being out in nature in a totally different way.
When you’ve chosen a destination for your next wellness travel adventure, make sure to add trip protection to your plans. From flights and accommodations to pre-paid excursions or classes, travel insurance can help protect the money you spent for your trip. Contact Seven Corners to find the right insurance for you.