Get a grip! Rigid handles, soft handles, booms – Which to choose?

Are you in the market for a new wing and overwhelmed by all the choices? Soft handles, rigid handles, booms – how do you decide? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this article, we’ll explore the major differences, pros, and options to help you make an informed decision. The contact points on your wing are crucial for your overall experience, and there’s more to consider than just personal preference.

Why it is important

Handles are a crucial element in the design of a wing. They are not only significant in terms of grip and texture but also in their placement and positioning. Handles are the primary touchpoints on a wing and largely determine your experience. Poorly placed handles or booms can ruin even the best wing design.

Beyond the obvious differences between two handles and one boom, there are significant design implications. We will use the wings in the ENSIS lineup to illustrate these examples.

ENSIS SCORE Rigid handles direct steering and easy gripping

The ENSIS SCORE features two rigid handles with four connection points to the wing’s strut. This allows for more flexibility in strut design, such as the SCORE’s “S-strut,” which enhances efficiency while pumping and allows for ergonomic and intuitive handle placement. Any wingfoiler can pick up this wing and feel immediately comfortable. Additionally, the SCORE packs up very easily.

ENSIS TOP SPIN Ultra-directe Response

The ENSIS TOP SPIN has a boom, allowing complete freedom of hand placement. With only two connection points, wings with a boom generally have a straighter, more level strut. Wingfoilers new to booms may need some time to adjust as they figure out optimal hand placement. The freedom of hand placement allows for unlimited creativity on the water, with the trade-off being that it doesn’t pack as compactly as a wing with handles.

ENSIS SPIN Perfectly placed handles

The ENSIS SPIN features soft handles, which still have a place in the market, especially for beginners, kids, learners, and those who prefer an easy and intuitive ride. Soft handles do not connect as directly to the wing as booms or rigid handles, making the wing less reactive but better at absorbing gusts. They also provide peace of mind, knowing that your gear is less likely to be damaged.

What makes a great boom/rigid handle?

Having a strong and reliable connection to the wing with a comfortable and easy-to-handle grip are key points in making amazing booms and handles. Countless hours were spent ensuring the ENSIS booms and rigid handles were the perfect shape, size, and grip. They have an ergonomic egg shape with a diameter that is not too small or too big, allowing riders to comfortably be on the water for hours.

ENSIS SCORE Limited Edition Ergonomic rigid handles

Creating the perfect handle or boom involves overcoming significant challenges. The shift from soft to rigid handles required extensive development to ensure a fail-proof system that is strong, lightweight, and comfortable. Patrick, the developer behind the ENSIS Click Fix mounting system, played a crucial role in this evolution. Read more about the Click Fix development here.

ENSIS SCORE Rigid handles ENSIS click fix mounting system

Interested in anything wing or foil?

Interested in events ENSIS are hosting or attending or want to try out the gear? Be sure to follow our social media for future announcements, or check out the DEMO DAY page, for future events.The ENSIS team is highly skilled in wing foiling and is eager to assist you in starting your wing foiling journey. Our worldwide retailers offer a variety of ENSIS products. Contact us now to learn more about our products or locate an ENSIS retailer nearby.