|Turning the front of the board through the wind is called a tack. Turning the back of the board through the wind is called a jibe. Both maneuvers require a windsurfer to maintain his balance while switching to the opposite side of the board. Tacking is much easier than jibing and the beginner may want to consider only tacking, even if it means turning the board 270 degrees to head in the desired direction. Tacking is important as it keeps the windsurfer from drifting downwind.
When jibing a windsurfing board, the stern or back of the board passes through the wind, but unlike other forms of sailing, the back (or leech) of the sail does not pass through the wind. Instead, the sail is rotated 180 to 270 degrees with the front of the sail staying towards the wind.