Wakesurfing is a sport that has become increasingly popular in the recent years.
It started with a couple of daredevils goofing around with boards tied to their boats and has now become an exciting new watersport that is a cross between wakeboarding and surfing.
Here are some wakesurfing basics:
You will need an inboard boat
If you have a boat with an outboard engine, an engine which is mounted externally to the back of the boat, wakesurfing is not an option.
In order to ride the wake, a surfer must stay near the back of the boat, and should the rider fall, they may go towards the vessel.
Because of the danger presented by outboard motors, which do not feature protected fan blades, it is not safe to wakesurf with one.
You Need a Rope
You can’t wakesurf with just any rope, but one that is “wakesurf specific”.
Wakesurfing can be dangerous when pulled by a thin rope which can cause nasty rope burns.
Handles on such ropes can also be quite large. Surfers do not want to run the risk of getting hit with one should it fly off the rope or come down on them when the rider goes down.
Wakesurfers should look at using thicker ropes with small handles such as the ones featured here.
Surf Boards and Wakesurfing Boards
People use to wakesurf with regular surfboards, but now there are many companies who make specific boards for wakesurfing.
Note however, that regular surfboards are not a non-option. The only major differences include the length of the board, fin sizes, and buoyancy.
How to Get Up
Getting up on the board is not as difficult as it looks.
You should simply relax and lay back while placing your feet loosely on the wakesurf board. Make sure your knees are bent and start moving slowly at 2 mph, this will give you the chance to dial in.
Keep your arms straight, and try to pull yourself up.
Imagine that you’re on the floor, and someone is trying to pull you up. Simultaneously press down with you feet, and point the board in the direction of travel as you come out of the water.
Once you are up and comfortable, you can then toss the rope back to the boat or have someone pull the rope back in.
The momentum of the wake will keep propelling you forward at the same speed as the boat.
Positioning your Feet
An important question here is to what is the right width for your stance.
Usually it’s about shoulder width, but your feet can be anywhere from 6 to 18 inches, depending on height. Practice is the best way to find your sweet spot.
You can accelerate by shifting your weight to your front foot, and you can brake by shifting your weight to your back foot. The same applies when you shift yourself forward or backward.
Feet positioning is important because when you start doing tricks, you will need to learn to balance yourself with your feet.
The speed of the boat depends on the experience of the wakesurfer.
Beginners should start out at about 9 mph and can go as fast as 14 mph, but this depends on the amount of ballast, the hull, the boat and of course, the surfer.