The Roundhouse Cutback: a side perspective of the key moment

The Roundhouse Cutback is considered one of the most important critical maneuvers in the sport of surfing. Do you want to get it right?


Pulling a Roundhouse Cutback is not hard, but completing a charming, powerful Roundhouse Cutback requires training. As an high-performance trick, it is also used to get back on the wave face, at full throttle.

Although it's always better to train a Roundhouse Cutback in a point break, with a perfect-peeling wall, you may also go for it in wally beach breaks. In both cases, build up as much speed as possible while keeping relatively close to the pocket.

After driving your surfboard fast down the line, get a good, wide bottom-turn that will point you to the lip. As you shift onto your heel side, aim your leading shoulder to the beach. The surfboard will immediately work like an anticlockwise watch (in case you're a natural footer riding frontside).

You'll feel the board carving the salted water, as your front foot gets all the weight. On some tighter Roundhouse Cutbacks, you may be forced to touch the white water. If that's the case, bend your knees to absorb impact and turn as soon as possible. It's time to get back on the wave face.

Find a low stance to maintain flow, and adjust the body weight over the center of the surfboard. Begin the turning mode, add weight to the toes and release the pressure over your heels. Go for the next bottom-turn and target the next section.

The Roundhouse Cutback is a shifting game between your heels, shoulder, arms, legs and toes. It can be also seen as a connecting maneuver between a classic surfing cutback and faster wave section.

A perfect Roundhouse Cutback is a figure-8, long surf line, in which your ultimate goal is to return to the curl at full speed.