I threw together a few wakeboard tips for beginners to help you get started in the world of wakeboarding. Getting started with the wakeboarding is easy, even more if you are a snowboarder, skateboarder or do any other similar sport. First thing to remember is – don’t be afraid. This is the common mistake beginners make, the are all stiff and lean back so they slip.
The second advice I lay on your soul – If you fall, let go of the rope or you will get into all sorts of funny (for spectators) and uncomfortable (for yourself) positions :).
Wear a life jacket which saves you a lot of energy if you fall in the water a lot. Swiming with a wakeboard attached to your feet is not fun or easy. Also the boat driver should be remembered that as a beginner you need less speed to keep going.
What Kind Of Wakeboard to Choose?
You should choose a light board that is easy to manage. Large wakeboards with large fins will be more stable, better hold direction and you will progress faster. You will also be less tired, smaller wakeboard means more drag and water resistance and more pain in the arms.
What About The Rope?
When learning it is easier to be further away from the boat where the water is calm and smooth. The boats wake will give you problems. So make the rope longer.. anyway it should be at least about 15 meters long.
Setting She Bindings And Stance On The Wakeboard?
So you have your wakeboard, your boat and someone to drive it, life jacket and a rope. Now it is time to determine your stance and set your bindings. First thing to do when setting your stance is to determine your dominant leg – which foot will be in front, left or right? This will be very easy for the experienced skateboarders or snowboarders. But there is nothing to panic about if you are new to the water sport. There are more ways to find out which foot goes where. One of the most common ways is this – ask someone to push you from behind and which ever the foot you step forward is your lead foot. You can also try sliding on the floor and see which position feels better.
Now you can set up your bindings. Beginners should keep the bindings just at their shoulder width apart. The back binding should be slightly closer to the rear fin, so your weight is shifted a little bit towards the tail. The its time to set the degrees. For back foot try to maintain zero degrees angle, that means keep you back foot should straight across the board, your front foot should be kept at 9 to 27 degrees pointing forward, towards the nose. If you will rent the wakeboard first time you go out (this is a good idea:) ) the angles will be probably set for beginners so just figure out which foot goes in front.
Also – wakeboard bindings should fit. If they are tight you will get tired and even worse, get hurt as your legs will stay in the bindings when you fall. If they are to loose you will not be able to ride for long. If the bindings don’t fit, you can not balance and control the wakeboard on the water and you will fall more often.
A Tips For First Time
Now you are ready to start, what to do in the water? Before hitting the water always check the bindings and the fins for security. Grab the rope and get into position. You should float on back with a life vest on, kind of like sitting deep in a comfy chair. And start in deep water. Bend your knees and bring the wakeboard between your body and the boat. The board should be at ninety degrees to the rope and arms should be on each side of the front knee. The tip of the board should be just above the water surface.
When the boat starts to pull you slowly stand up. Start slow and keep in mind that when you try to stand up from the water, the wakeboard will give much more resistance then when you pick up your speed. So slowly release the pressure on the wakeboard and stand up. You should not try to pull the rope and the boat, this is common mistake with beginners. Let the boat pull you :)! After you are more or less standing and the board is out of the water put a little more weight on your rear foot. This will straighten the board. Keep in mind that this has to be done in one smoooooth motion. Now smile, you are riding sideways and you are wakeboarding. YES!! :)
Watch out for that boat that is pulling you, do not get to close to it, power boats have screw propellers which you do not want to meet first hand. Also, as a beginner any old rope will do, rope made for waterskiing will be just fine. But when you want to learn wakeboarding tricks, you need to buy a specific rope for wakeboarding.
Now what? Well, the wakeboard tips for beginners end here, you are not a complete beginner anymore.