Wakeboarding

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Fourth of July 2011



The history of the sport called wakeboarding goes back for a couple decades It is really a combination of several sports; water skiing, snowboarding, and surfing. For years surfing has been the sport of many beach goes, but Tony Finn developed skurfer in 1985 in San Diego. Skurfer is what wakeboarding use to be called and is a combination of skiing and surfing.

To do the sport you used a little surfboard and was pulled by a boat while the rider performed many surf-style moves. The ride style was visions of snowboarding and skateboarding with a little bit of skiing. In the beginning, the boards didn’t have a foot strap and so the rider stood anywhere on the board and tried to stay on the board as long as possible.

In the summer of 1985, foot straps were added to the boards. This was an interesting innovation at that the time because it came from two different people at the same time and each person was not aware of the other. The two were Jimmy Redmon from Texas and Tony Finn. Because of this innovation, more jumps and tricks were allowed to be incorporated into the sport. The sport became more dynamic and free-styled. All the riders were trying to find new ways to get attention and many tricks came out of the late 1980’s.

By the early 1990’s, it has become a huge sport and had competitions on ESPN. But the sport was still struggling a bit. The lack of technology was holding the sport back and only experience riders would actually attempt any of the sports. So then many people began to develop their own boards and ideas that would eventually make the sport popular again. Herb O’Brien designed a new board for the sport and called it a wakeboard.

The new invention turned out to change the sport forever an including its name. Instead of being called skurfer, it was now known as wakeboarding. The board allows the rider to submerge it for easy deepwater stars and it was accessible to everyone from four and above ages. Then O’Brien continued to make innovations to his wakeboard.

A thin board would curve like a slalom ski. By adding dimples, the board could break up water adhesion, give the rider a loose feel, and have softer landings for jumpers. As the sport continued to grow, the boards grew better too. They were designed better through the years to give the rider and ultimate water experience that would allow them to show off their tricks more. The

Redmon founded WWA or World Wakeboard Association in 1989 and Redmon is now considered the guru of wakeboarding. He has been responsible for making the sport and has been responsible for the increase interest in the sport. Wakeboarding has recently been added to the X games because the sport is so popular.

Top Ten Wakeboarding Tricks

So you’ve mastered the basics of wakeboarding tricks and you are ready to move on to something more advanced? If you think you’re ready to try your hand at the more complicated maneuvers on a wakeboard then consider the following top ten wakeboarding tricks to test your skills.

#1 Top Wakeboarding Trick

First is the Crow Mobe which is a toeside front roll with a frontside 360. This is actually one of the easy mobe tricks that you can do on a wakeboard and if you do it correctly it will impress anyone watching. This trick can even be done without having to gain a lot of air and you can choose to do it without a mid-air handle-pass to make it easier as you get used to the trick. Before you try the Crow Mobe it is a good idea to be good at rotating scarecrows fast and be able to effortlessly do toeside 360s both with and without passing the handle.

#2 Top Wakeboarding Trick

The Mobius which is a heelside backroll with a front side 360. This was the first mobe trick done on wakeboards, but it is very difficult to remain consistent when doing this trick so you don’t see many people, even professionals, doing it today. So by doing this trick you will definitely gain admiration and respect from people who are watching you. Before you try this trick you should be able to do roll to reverts with a short cut and good height. You should have strong handle passing skills and be fluent in performing heelside 360s.

#3 Top Wakeboarding Trick

Then there is the Tantrum to Blind which is a tantrum with an indy grab and a backside 180. This is a very difficult trick that requires you to have both skill and grace. It is also another one of those wakeboarding tricks that is very difficult to become consistent with. Although once you master this trick it is a very beautiful looking trick. Before doing this trick you should have a strong understanding and ability of the wake-to-wake tantrum and the ability to do a backside 180 which requires you to land wrapped.

#4 Top Wakeboarding Trick

Fourth is the Elephant which is a scarecrow with a rewind 180 performed backwards to forwards. This trick is very similar to the scarecrow except you pull the board back just before landing instead of landing switch. To do the Elephant correctly you must rotate and look like you are doing a scarecrow instead of a toeside front roll. Before doing this trick you should be able to do toesides that require hard edging, be able to do big wake jumps toeside and have the ability to do large scarecrows.

#5 Top Wakeboarding Trick

Next is the Front Flip which is an end over end cartwheel style flip. This is considered a more advanced trick even though it is a classic invert because of the fact that you can grab in different ways to both make it your own and also add big style to the trick. Before doing this you should be able to make large wake jumps heelside, do cartwheels on the ground or on a trampoline and be very comfortable going upside down while moving.

#6 Top Wakeboarding Trick

The sixth trick is the Half-Cab Roll which is a switch roll to revert. The roll to revert is probably the second easiest invert a wakeboard can learn, but landing switch makes it a little bit harder than the easy inverts. You can add style to this trick by choosing to grab melan, mute or nose. You should be able to do a back roll, be comfortable with a heelside 180 and do big wake jumps before attempting this trick.

#7 Top Wakeboarding Trick

The comes the heelside backroll which is easily described as a reverse cartwheel. The backroll is one of the easiest inverts to do on a wakeboard and in fact this is probably the first trick you learned. After you have developed proper technique and edge the backroll is actually quite easy, but then a lot of tricks will be built off of it. Before moving on you need to master the backroll by being able to edge hard and progressively, make large wake jumps and have practice going upside down on a trampoline.

#8 Top Wakeboarding Trick

Next is the Scarecrow which is a front roll with a frontside 180.This trick can be done either small or big. The hardest part is the approach and pop off the wake. You should be able to edge hard and progressively toeside and master the toeside 180 before attempting this trick.

#9 Top Wakeboarding Trick

The Tantrum is a heelside backflip that is a classic wakeboarding trick and one of the first inverts many will attempt. This is one of the first trick in wakeboarding history and is similar to doing a back flip on a trampoline. You can build on the trick by grabbing in different ways for style and build on it with harder trick such as the Whirlybird. Before attempting this trick you should have good edge control and be comfortable performing aggressive heelside cuts and big landings.

#10 Top Wakeboarding Trick

Lastly there is the whirlybird which is a tantrum with a backside 360 while rotating the handle above your head. If you perform this trick right it can be one of the most beautiful tricks in wakeboarding. Basically you have to perform a tantrum with a backside 360 while keeping the rope over your head instead of passing the handle. You should be very comfortable performing Tantrums before you attempt to do this wakeboard trick.