THE FOIL. Some will say that this is only a trend, that its future is very uncertain in the nautical world. We think the opposite ! In recent years, it has been making more and more headlines about himself in France and around the world. We find it in more and more water sports and we think that it is not for nothing. We will surely hear a lot more about it in the years to come…


But by the way, what’s the foil ?


It is the core business of BirdyFish, it is on this one that we base for our boat. The foil is a profiled wing that moves in water and transmits a lift force to its support. It is placed under the boat and allows to improve its performance by removing the friction of the water. Foils affect speed, but also stability. One might think that this technology is very recent. In fact, it was in the 18th century that the idea of putting airplane wings on a ship to make it fly appeared. Several inventors have studied the subject in numerous researches, for more than a century. But it is only at the development of composite materials, in the 2000’s, that the concept of foil, as we know it today, makes its real appearance.

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Hydrofoil of Enrico Forlanini on the Majeur lake in Italy, 1906.                                                                                                                        Credit : Magazine National Geographic


But then, what will be the place of foil, in water sports, for years to come ?


If we open our eyes a little, the answer to the question is quickly found. There is a real craze around foil in the nautical world, and sailing in particular, in recent years. Despite its recent popularity, the foil is still little known, although it tends to be more and more. We can see an acceleration of the trend around this concept for about 5 years. We see it making his debut in the Vendée Globe in 2016, with 6 boats equipped with foil that year. Whereas for the last season, 2020, 19 boats were equipped with them. Even the Vendée Globe is getting started ! Beyond this, the foil extends to many other nautical domains. Some even adapt the name of their foil practice. We can find in particular the wingfoil, the surfoil, but also the supfoil.

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Birdy test at La Ciotat, 2021.


This practice still has good days to live before it. It is promised to a certain future in boating. Of course, we know that not everyone has the ambition to fly over water. The foil is not intended to replace recreational boating or other water sports practices. Of course, you need something for everyone. The foil is a complementary innovation that adds to the many others that already exist. It allows people eager for speed and feeling to satisfy their desires in this field. But it also allows you to feel free, fly like a bird. It’s magical (or rather technological…) !

Today, the practice of foiling is gradually opening up to more and more people. It is no longer exclusively reserved for competition, nor for seasoned practitioners. The foil is introduced into leisure practice and allows to fly even with a lower level of practice. BirdyFish is the perfect example !

So, tempted by the experience ? BirdyFish is waiting for you to fly away together !


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