For beginning wakeboarders, learning how to get up on a wakeboard is the most difficult hurdle to overcome. In fact, many give up the sport altogether before they ever make it on top of the water, just because it’s so challenging. None of this, however, should matter to you. Getting up on a wakeboard isn’t really as hard as it seems. All it requires is a high level of persistence and the use of the following guidelines.
- Get in the water, and grab the handle. Now, humans aren’t naturally graceful in water. This is especially true when you have a gigantic fiberglass board strapped to your feet. So don’t worry about looking like a fool as you try to get to the end of the rope. Wakeboarding certainly necessitates the willingness to look like a fool, no matter how good you are.
- When the handle’s firmly in your grasp, roll onto your back. The only thing you’ll achieve on your belly is getting a face full of water when the boat takes off. Before signaling the driver to hit the throttle, make sure your feet are facing the back of the boat, and you’re on your back.
- Curl up into a tight ball. Keeping your knees close to your chest will make it easier for the force of the boat to pull you up. Also, make sure that your arms are fully extended and locked. Bent elbows and wrists are a recipe for a dropped rope as soon as the boat starts moving.
- In that same squatting position, let the boat’s momentum bring you to the top. When you see watersports fanatics get up on a wakeboard in a low squat, it’s because they’re doing this. Novice wakeboarders have a tendency to try to pull themselves out of the water using their own strength. The fact is, your arms will never be as strong as a boat’s high power motor.
- As you feel more steady and confident, slowly come out of the squat. This is the number one spot where new wakeboarders fail. They are gliding in the squat position, and inevitably end up trying to extend their legs too early. Then their balance is gone, and they hit the water face first. By taking it more slowly, you’ll be able to maintain your balance as you stand. Think of the motion as being similar to a squat in weightlifting – butt out, balance maintained, and using your quadriceps to propel you steadily upward. And just like that, you’ll be standing on a wakeboard for the first time.