Follow These Wakeboarding Tips For An Easy Ride

 By: Niall Cinneide
So you have already experienced this relatively new sports craze? The following are some wakeboarding tips to make your riding a whole lot easier. Keep them in mind and you won't get a hard time as a newbie wakeboard rider.

- Make sure that you are comfortable with whatever foot you placed forward. Sometimes, just switching feet is all that is needed to easily learn to wakeboard.

- Put your arms on each side of your front knee. Your weight should be about 60% forward on the board. Keep in mind to place more than half of your weight on the front foot when getting up. Shift your weight to the back foot only after you have successfully gotten up.

- Squat down as much as you can to easily swing to an upright position when close to the board.

- Keep the board on its side while in the water. Relax and let the boat cause the board to swing around into the forward position. Do not attempt to stop the board from swinging around either. Just go with the flow.

- Don't get too fast. Someone said "give him full throttle until he's up"; this is one biggest problem that people (especially large people) have when getting up. Don't go too fast. If you have a problem in getting up, try going slower.

- Go for a short rope, attached to a ski pylon if possible. It helps. After you're up, it's just as hard to stay up, as it was to get out of the water (at least for the first couple of rides). The short rope will cut down on the amount of slack. Use about 45-50' rope.

- Once you get used to staying up on the board and getting out of the water, you will probably want to adjust your speed to somewhere between 14-19 mph depending on what type of tricks you're attempting. You will also have to adjust your rope length to get the best-formed portion of the wake.

Drivers

- Gradually increase your speed. It's so hard for a beginner to keep his balance on this new "slippery" feeling board. Any sudden movements are going to contribute to the newbie losing balance. It's good to drag them a little and let them get the feel of the resistance before starting, but even when you hit it, be sure it's very gradual and smooth.

- Stay slow. After the newbie gets up, keep the speed under 16 mph. This requires a good driver who knows his boat well enough to get it planed without going over 16 mph. Don't rely on the speedometer. A common speedometer often has false readings until the boat is planed out. Just get a feel for keeping the boat slow.

In addition to the above tips, always read and listen to what the expert riders have to say about the sport. They can give you much wider insights about basic riding, executing tricks and more.
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