Japanese rider Yuri Takimoto is flying over waves on her foils. Being the wife of Takuma founder Cyril Coste she has access to the full Takuma quiver of foils. Currently based in Japan, Yuri chats to TotalSUP about why “the only way is foiling”, and introducing the concept of foiling to women riders!
Hi Yuri, where did it all start?
My love for watersports all started when I took a windsurfing lesson for the 1st time in Zushi beach, Shonan which is a hot spot for surfing in Japan and is the biggest surfing town in Japan. After I felt the glide sensation on the water I felt awaken to a deeper level of enjoument for life. Shortly after having this experience, I quit my job and moved to Maui , where I was introduced to a wider range of water sports. I tried it all: surfing, kiteboarding, SUP surfing. I went on to live in maui for 12 years, after that I moved to New Caledonia with my French husband Cyril Coste.
We lived close to an uncrowded and beautiful reef break spot. It was my husband who got me into foiling, he taught me how to foil for the first time. Now we are based in Miyazaki, Japan. My local spot is a river mouth 10 mins from home.
How did you learn and what was the experience?
My husband Cyril Coste is the founder of Takuma Concept, as it is well known he is very enthusiastic and really into foiling, as some people might know! In reflection, the first time he put me on a foil was not the best way! I started on a huge race board with a super sharp kite foil attached to it! He then towed me behind a boat, I just kept on getting crushed!
Right after that he went on a business trip for 3-4 weeks and came back with a brand new foil: The V100 Takuma Concept.
I was pretty skeptical at first about the design, especially in the beginning but I had a go anyway and this time surprisingly I didn’t get crushed and I took off immediately! It was a lot easier and it was an amazing feeling!
What foil do you use and can you recommend it?
I love the V50 Takuma Concept. The front wing is a lot smaller than other models. I only weigh 46kgs, so often the other wings feel too big for me. Plus my paddling technique and strength is not as not as strong or efficient as men, so I tend to take off too late and too close to the wave peak often where there is more power rather than the safer shoulder area. A smaller wing has really helped me to keep control without wiping out and makes turning a lot easier.
If you are already a good SUP surfer/surfer/kite surfer/windsurfer, you know the principals of wave riding, that is choosing, catching and taking off waves, so foiling won’t be dangerous or difficult. The most important thing is to choose right conditions, and secondly right gear.
Why should other women go foiling?
Why not?! Just like normal surfing or other water sports, women can enjoy and ride to a great standard. Foiling is fun and very soothing. In foiling, we don’t care much about ‘hitting or ripping’, its maneuver is just long and graceful. You really appreciate how fast you glide and this feeling should be shared by everyone. I would love to hold a women foil camp in Miyazaki one day! So watch out for that in future! Women really need to try it it! The words words to describe the sensation of foil glide are, smooth, soothing, fast, floating and awesome magic flying carpet!
Check out the Takuma Range on their website and soon you can be flying above the waves!