Wakeboarding is a fun sport where the rider’s skills develop as they practice and try new maneuvers.
Maintaining basic wakeboarding safety rules will allow you to have a more rewarding experience without taking risks.
Those who have tried it already know that many things can happen on board, but they also know that there are accessories and proven techniques that make it a safer sport.
If you are just starting out and you are interested in standing out as a professional rider, you should know the safety measures that will make you have fun safely on the wakes.
Let’s review some of them, read on;
Safety tips for wakeboarding
This is what your survival will depend on if you ever get loose from the board.
An approved wakeboard vest is the one that will allow you to float, the important thing is that it is comfortable to perform maneuvers in the water. Choose the right size according to your weight, covering your chest and back.
This should be part of your routine.
Every time you enter the water, make sure that the equipment is in good condition and that it is the right one for you, in terms of size and specifications.
The board should have no protrusions or sharp edges that could hurt the rider; the ropes and other accessories for fastening to the boat should be in good condition, any sign of fraying or breakage should be brought to your attention.
When wakeboarding with a boat it is very important to communicate effectively with the rider.
Only when you are really ready, i.e. when you have checked that there are no obstacles in the way and that the rope has the right tension, neither too tight nor too loose, can you give the start signal to the rider.
Communicating with the wakeboard boat crew members
Remember that they will be the ones dragging you, but you will be the one to tell them what to do according to your ability and intentions at the time. There are some institutionalized signals so that they can understand each other, we share the most important ones with you:
-OK sign: indicates that all is well.
-Thumbs up or down: shows when to speed up or slow down.
-Move your arm up and down in a cross: indicates that you are close to the swell.
-An arm in a cross with the index finger stretched out and making turns with the wrist: you are asking to make a 180° degree turn.
-Tilt head and hand: you are asking to balance the boat.
-Hand or finger making a neck cut signal: you are asking to stop the boat.
-Hand on the head: stop the activity to return to the starting point.
Avoid shallow water
The depth of the water should be considerable so that if the rider should fall in, he/she can swim or float.
In shallow water you could hit the surface in a really dangerous way.
The board out as a signal
In crowded sailing areas, one way to signal that you have fallen off the board is to raise it to the surface and tell the other boats to stay away from that area, which can prevent many serious accidents.
In a boat used to pull a wakeboarder there should always be a helper present who will be the observer of both the boat and the rider.
These are some of the most basic wakeboarding safety measures that we can give you if you are starting out in this exciting practice.
Safety is important and following these recommendations will not stop wakeboarding from being fun.
Some other safety rules are more related to common sense and have to do with the amount of daylight available, with the stunts you try to do and with the way you fall so as not to hurt yourself either with the water or with the board.
If you are looking to develop new maneuvers, you will learn them with practice and with the advice of a trained instructor, the rest is to equip yourself with the regulatory accessories and go out and have the time of your life. Always safe and protected.