Ride Wakes: Learn More About Wakeboards
When selecting your wakeboard, think about your riding style — both on and off the water. Surfers and skiers often prefer a single-tip board, designed for a pointed front and a square back, mimicking the design of a surfboard. Snowboarders and skateboarders should try a twin-tip board, designed with a rounded front and back end, much like a skateboard.
Wakeboards are generally built from the same materials as water skis, including a polyurethane core wrapped by fiberglass or fiberglass graphite. Most wakeboards are between 120 and 150 centimeters in length. Always consult product information for guidelines on size and weight restrictions for your board.
Generally, the shorter the wakeboard, the less stability you will have in starts and turns. Beginners should choose a longer board. Consider the construction of your wakeboard:
The amount of rocker describes a wakeboard's bottom profile using the angles where the board curves at either end. Wakeboard rockers have three major categories: continuous, continuous/progressive and three-stage.
Fins keep the board traveling in the direction in which you point it and prevent it from freely rotating on the water. It does this using vertical depth and the shape of the foil, or profile, of the fin from front to back.
- Wider foils move more water and create drag and lift under your feet
- Thinner foils push less water and let the fin guide your board without resistance
Wakeboarders need a stiffer rope than water skiers. Tighter, stiffer ropes that don't stretch provide more air to pull yourself through flips and spins. Keep in mind these factors when buying your wakeboarding rope:
- Low stretch ropes are generally constructed of polyethylene or some blend of it
- These generally stretch around 1 percent in length when under a normal wakeboarding load
- Wakeboard ropes vary in length, but most are sixty to seventy feet long
- Some are one piece with no length adjustment, while others offer multiple adjustment loops
- Wakeboard handles tend to be more specialized than water-ski handles because they offer more features that make tricks and aerial maneuvers easier
- Most wakeboard handles have a wider grip than water ski handles
- Wakeboard handles commonly have grips that are 13-15 inches wide, whereas ski handles are generally 11-12 inches wide
- The increased grip width makes it easier to perform tricks requiring the handle to be passed behind the rider's back