When dissecting the planing step jibe, there’s always a lot of emphasis placed on the back or carving foot. But rarely, it seems, is there much ever said about the front foot — the one still in the strap initially.
This forgotten foot actually plays an important role in controlling the turning radius of the board during the carving stage and while you’re switching your feet. If your front foot points toward the nose of the board while in the foot strap, the board will turn wider. To tighten the turn, point your foot inward more toward the inside rail. I recommend pointing your foot toward the nose to keep more board speed.
Also, as you enter the jibe, keep your front heel up with your weight on your toes, hips inward and knees bent to create a smooth carve during both tight and wide turns. When its time to switch your feet, turn your front foot out of the foot strap and place it across the centerline; this is key. With the invention of wide boards, your old front foot travels far across the centerline and the old foot twist may not be enough.
Once your foot is placed across the board far enough, apply heel pressure — that’s right, heel pressure — before stepping up with your new front foot. The heel pressure on the inside rail will keep your board carving, which will give you a chance to finish the jibe on a plane.