Air Roll Spin (ARS): a combination of a forward spin and an el rollo | Photo: D'Andrea/APB

It's one of the most popular maneuvers in contemporary bodyboarding. The air roll spin (ARS) is not as complicated as it looks. Let's learn how to pull it and land it.

The ARS combines two key bodyboarding tricks: the forward spin (360) and the el rollo.

The move was invented in 1993 by Michael "Eppo" Eppelstun after watching Ben Holland perform a tweaked air reverse.

Eppelstun landed it for the first time at Lighthouse Beach in Port Macquarie, New South Wales.

Three months later, at North Wall, he went for a section, hesitated, and ended up flying and landing backward. The backflip had been born.

The air roll spin is a progressive bodyboarding maneuver.

If you're an intermediated ride with advanced ambitions to bring your skill to a whole new level, then the ARS is the perfect challenge for you.

Trial and error, trying, and training. That is the secret formula for landing your first air roll spin.

And you don't need spectacular waves. A powerful three-footer with a nice-looking lip is all you need.

Air Roll Spin 101

Ready to land your first ARS? Here's how to pull it off:

  1. Gain speed and projection with a competent bottom turn;
  2. Eye the section you want to hit;
  3. Lean forward on the board with your head at nose level;
  4. Tense your body and flatten the board to gain maximum projection;
  5. Angle your board upwards;
  6. Launch out of the lip;
  7. Arch your head and start the el rollo part of the maneuver;
  8. On the way down, throw your head inwards towards the wave face;
  9. Start spinning;
  10. Look at where you want to go, and let your body follow;
  11. Center your body;
  12. Keep your legs lifted;
  13. Land the ARS;
  14. If you land it backward, look back and let the whitewater turn you around;

The easiest way to land an air roll spin (ARS) is when you've got a closeout section or when you're coming out of a barrel.

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