How To Wakeboard As A Beginner
It is always intimidating to take up a new sport, but when it comes to wakeboarding, you will not be disappointed with the results. Wakeboarding, like anything, takes practice, which means that you are going to want to try it many times before you can really get the hang of it. While you might be unsure how to start, we are here to help break that down for you. Here’s what every beginning wakeboarder should know.
What to Wear
To begin with, let’s talk about what you will need to wear. You most likely have seen riders wearing swimsuits but there are some other things to remember. Wakeboarding can bang you around quite a bit, so having a swimsuit that is going to cover you a lot more is only going to benefit you. You will also have a life jacket over your swimsuit, so it needs to work with that as well. It is common to see riders wearing a wetsuit or a rash guard as well. These will keep you warm and keep your skin protected when you fall.
Naturally, the most important item that you will wear is your life jacket. Competitive riders will wear impact jackets that are there to protect your body against any force that might be inflicted, but beginners need to have a life jacket that will act as a flotation device.
Falling is Part of the Process
Just like our friends at Wakeboard Buddy always say, if you are not falling, you are not trying hard enough. Falling is part of the learning process. It might be hard to figure out why you are falling at first, but not knowing is incredibly common. This is why you are really going to need the life jacket. You will fall often and would become exhausted quickly if you had to tread water every time that you are in the water.
Ok, now that you know that falling is all part of the process, you will need to know how to get up on the boar to begin with. Here are the basic steps:
- Attach the rope to the boat as tightly as possible. You will want it short as well to increase the upward pull that you get from the boat, so you can stand up.
- Check your bindings and make sure that they are fitting your feet well.
- Line up with the boat. You will want your arms straight, resting on your knees. Your knees will need to be bent as well and keep them bent, even as the boat begins to pull you. This is how you will get the best balance possible. You will want to stay like this until the boat is going and you are completely upright and over the board.
- Stand up.
Getting up on your wakeboard is mostly about patience. If you stand up too soon, you will just be back in the water again. In fact, rushing to stand up on the board is one of the most common mistakes that beginning riders make. You also cannot keep your knees bent forever. It really has a lot to do with feel and you should be able to get the handle of it after you practice several times.
Once you are up, you will want to make sure that your dominant foot is in the back and your non-dominant foot is facing the front of your board. Then, you will find that you are actually wakeboarding.
Catching air and doing tricks are some of the most fun things that you can do on a wakeboard and a beginner should be able to experiences these as well. The first trick to try out on a wakeboard, once you have your balance down, is the toeside one-way jump. You can also try the heelside on-way jump and a surface 180s. Once you have these down, you will really be able to do anything that you want to.
Do not be worried about all you will have to learn with wakeboarding. Once out on the water, you will experience the joy of it and the rest will follow.