Common Tongue : Why Method?

JD Webb with a traditional Front Foot Method

JD Webb with a traditional Front Foot Method

“The Method is a Rosetta Stone – a common launguage we share that allows our styles to communicate across platforms and skill levels”

Firstly, let us clear it up, the Method, originally a tweaked Melon Grab, is a variation of a Melon, not a standalone grab, therefore it will henceforth be referred to as a trick, not a grab. Get it? The trick itself has a strange history, and is not nearly as ‘style orientated’ as you might think. Vert skater Neil Blender invented and the trick almost by accident in a highest air contest in the Californian mid ‘80s. The height of the trick was measured from the lowest point of your body in the air. So Neil arched his back while grabbing a Melon to lift the lowest point of his body up. His theory worked, and thus Neil had discovered the best ‘Method’ for winning. True story.

It is a trick that has developed over time. From Neil’s first happy accident the next major progression came out of Scandinavia and Europe in the late ‘90s when guys like Terje Haakonsen laid down what was to become the benchmark of the modern Method. With a grab between the front binding and the nose of the board, Terje stood tall high above the commoners below. His was to become an icon of modern snowboarding growth, perhaps, all things considered, Terje has the most iconic Method of all time.

So it is a trick that transcends genres, from skateboarding to snowboarding to… wakeboarding.

THE TWO MAIN METHODS
1. Front (Leading)Foot Poke.

Randall Harris was overheard one day saying “You poke your front leg on a Method,” and seeing as it came from Randall’s mouth, I believe it. The most stylish Methods are all about twisting your Melon, poking and getting it as rad as possible. I use the word RAD because it’s born from the ‘80s, bitch. This is a more traditional Method, grabbed Melon and poked. Because of line tension we have the unlikely possibility of re-imagining such an iconic trick the way snowboarding did before us. An off the kicker Method can be poked while drifting inwardly off axis and then pulled back out to land, this is much harder behind a boat, but when nailed it is one of the most impressive thing you can lock down and is genuinely unique to our sport. Chriso does it this way nowadays because “It’s harder, and also it makes you grab Melon first then pull it around much like the way you have to do it on a skateboard.” Another front foot poke Method variation is the one that guys like Mike Dowdy and Harley are doing; a method glide off the wake while poking their front foot out behind them.

JD Pocking his Front Foot in this Method

JD Webb poking his Front Foot while grabbing Melon. Pic: O’Shea

2. Back (Trailing) Foot Poke.

Traditionally the back foot poke is grabbed between your front foot and your nose and was, at times, referred to as the ‘Nethod.’ As mentioned above, snowboarders started grabbing this way while bringing the board around in front of them, dropping and poking their back foot out. The key to this is the combination of the grab and the poking, either one without the other does not constitute a Method, further reinstating the aforementioned mantle of ‘trick.’ To extend a little, legit standalone grabs are your nose, tail or between your legs. Any other variation demands pokeage, be it crail, slob, seatbelt etc. these grabs are okay only when combined with poking, but I digress. Guys like Danny Harf do a solid back foot poke method.

Danny Harf. Pocking his Back Foot in this Method

Danny Harf. Pocking his Back Foot out while grabbing between his Front foot and the nose. Pic: Comps Ronix

THE COMMON LANGUAGE.

Be it on a snowboard, a skateboard, or a plank of wood jumping off your neighbour’s roof, the Method is a Rosetta Stone – a common launguage we share that allows our styles to communicate across platforms and skill levels.

Plus, regardless of whether or not you can stick a Whirly 5 it is possible that your Method can go toe-to-toe with Bob’s, Chriso’s or Randall’s. It’s a great leveller, a way for the average rider to measure his or herself against the pros. A legit method is a legit Method – always.

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