Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: New Orleans
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and also keeps the mainsheet from dragging in the water, which is slow and involuntarily 'trims' the main when you don't want it.
If it's heavy air and he wants you to 'sit' on the boom, then you're a "human boom vang assist". In light air you should be pushing just out, not down, since the latter can affect sail shape.
Maybe they just like your looks up there? ;-)