Looping is one of those tricks that isn't all that technical, but it sure can be frustrating when you're trying to learn! It's one of the coolest feeling tricks out there and I'm psyched to be able to share it with you!
The ideal place to learn to loop is a flat, deep hole.
Step 1: Get to know the hole: Surf out into the hole, and get familiar with it. Find where it's deep. Find where its shallow. Each hole tends to have a sweet spot where its deep and retentive, yet still friendly. This is the ideal place to loop.
Step 2: Now that you're familiar with the hole, spin or surf your way to the top of the pile.
Step 3: From the top of the pile, square up to the hole, lean your body forward, and allow the bow of your boat to enter the green water where the pile meets the seam of the hole.The deeper the bow goes into the water, the more potential you have for catching some big air.
As you sink the bow, be sure to bring your hands up in front of your body and out of the water. Otherwise, it is very easy to get your paddle stuck in oncoming green water or the pile.
**Step 3 is more about letting the water "pull" your bow under rather then forcing your bow down using power and speed**
Step 4: As the boat begins to "Ender", stand up, and bring your hands above your head. Just as your boat hits its peak in the "Ender", do a big sit-up, and tuck forward and onto the front of your boat.
"Kiss the deck" so to speak.
Step 5: As you kiss the deck, you will feel your boat begin to move into the air above you. Rather than using force to get the boat around, think about the boat moving around you as you keep your body at the center of the "loop".
Quickly move your body to the stern of your boat, and do one big kick of your feet down and away from you, while thrusting your torso onto the backdeck of the boat. You'll feel your stern land. If you have good pop, you'll be able to land the loop no problem as-is.
For smaller spots, or for loops with less "pop", you may need to land the loop on a stroke in order to pull the loop through and stay in the hole. To land on a stroke, simply move one blade toward the stern of the boat as you kick your feet and move to the back of the boat. The rest simply happens.
VOILA! You've done your first loop!
If you hit the bottom of the river in a place that you know is deep: Try sinking your bow higher up in the foam pile
If you stand up too early: this prevents the bow from pearling and causes the boat to plane into a surf
If you stand up too late: little-to-no air and a bottom-of-the-hole calamity
If you land on your head: Chances are you didn't tuck up hard enough or didn't kick your feet/move your torso to the back of your boat hard/fast enough. Be aggressive!
And of course, video:
Check out WS's Jonny Meyers and his Carbon Air: http://wavesport.ning.com/profiles/blogs
Hope to loop with you soon!