Looking for a summer excitement on the water but somehow water skiing does not seem to thrill you anymore? Why not try to kick it up a notch by introducing some of Tony Hawk’s impressive skateboarding stunts? And that’s without the risk of losing your teeth or breaking an arm. What if I told you that someone already thought of that and invented a special type of sport? Yup, the thrill awaits.
Wakeboarding, or as it was originally called “skurfing”, is said to have originated in Australia and New Zealand shortly after the advent of snowboarding. The thing it has in common with water skiing is that it involves being pulled by a boat on the surface of the water, but instead of skis, the rider is attached to a wakeboard. Unlike skis, where you don’t have much choice how to move, the wakeboard gives the rider freedom to perform a number of skateboard tricks but without the risk of loosing his teeth or breaking an arm.
Due to this, wakeboarding has become very popular with people looking for the next adrenaline rush, but who still like to play it safe. However, fearless surfers are also huge fans of this sport for their own reasons. It gives them something to do on days when the water is calm and there are not much waves. Sometimes you need to wait for hours in the water for a big wave that can carry you. But in wakeboarding, the boat that pulls you is your wave making machine. So essentially, wakeboarding is surfing behind a boat. Actually, it’s even better than surfing because you can go on until you’re tired. A wave lasts only for a couple of seconds, but the wake is an endless ride without a time limit.
Although it’s regarded as safer than water surfing and skateboarding, wakeboarding still comes with some minor risks involved. Like all water sports, it can get chilly when the water temperatures drop and the only thing to protect you from hypothermia is a good wetsuit. But even if the water is nice and warm, you most certainly can’t do it without a good helmet. All the backflips you’ll be attempting to make can end up with your head hitting the water, or, even worse, hitting the board.
To save themselves from any possible headaches or concussions, most wakeboarders do not go in the water without their favourite Jobe Slam Wake Helmet. Like its name suggests, it’s designed to absorb the shock from slamming your head into the water. And the fact that the demand for a Jobe Slam Wake Helmet is high, is proof enough that wakeboarding is starting to become more and more popular. But the top safety measure when doing water sports, even the most simple ones, is a life vest. The chances you’ll need it are very slim, but it’s always good to play it safe in case of any cramps that can prevent you from swimming to the boat or shore after you’ve lost your grip on the rope.
Being very similar to skateboarding, this sport has naturally become most popular among the young and the list of tricks grows every day. It has even developed its own language exclusively used in the wakeboarding community like, for example, the phrase “stacked out”, which means wiping out. The enthusiasm for wake boarding in Australia is so high that there’s even a national competition taking place every year.
Even if you are a newbie to water sports, there’s no risk in trying. Maybe the first few times you’ll feel not confident to just glide on the water as others do, but trust me, after that initial fear wears off and you try some flips and tricks, there’s nothing else but fun, fun, fun in store for you!