A great hobby, an exciting adventure
Want to feel like you are walking on water? Water skiing is thrilling, whether you do it as a hobby or experience one of the many water ski vacations offered worldwide. Due to the growing popularity of water skiing and wakeboarding, many travel destinations are offering water skiing as an exciting adventure travel option.
The water skiing equipment list is a short one and equipment is available at water skiing sports rental companies. You will need:
- A boat with a sufficient motor to tow a skier
- Water skis or wakeboard
- Water ski rope and handle
- A personal floatation device
- And obviously, a body of water!
Other water ski accessories such as clothing, water ski bags, helmets and specialty ropes are also available.
A boat driver and a dedicated observer are required. The observer will watch the skier and inform the driver of any falls and can also communicate hand signals the skier uses.
Different Types of Water Skiing and Wakeboarding
Whether you are a beginner, a competitive skier or somewhere in between, there is a type of water skiing for you:
- Water skiing. The original sport where the skier is pulled behind a motor boat on two water skis with fins, each with a full boot binding.
- Slalom skiing. A more advanced version of water skiing where the skier skis on a specially made slalom water ski. This ski has one full boot binding and a second toe binding.
- Trick skiing. The skier skis on one or two short, finless skis and perform tricks.
- Ski jumping. Skiers ski on two long skis with a specialized fin and are pulled over a ramp. The goal is to successfully land the longest jump, and may involve multiple skiers jumping the ramp and performing tricks.
- Ski racing. The fastest type of water skiing. It involves skiers racing around a set course.
- Cable water skiing. The skier is pulled by a series of overhead cables around the banks of a dam.
- Wakeboarding. Water skiing has evolved and merged with other sports such as snowboarding and surfing to create a new sport called wakeboarding. Riders are pulled on water skiing boards, called wakeboards.
How to Water Ski
Beginners usually find deep-water starts the easiest. The skier crouches in the water with bent knees, straight arms holding the handle and ski tips pointed out of the water. Once the OK signal is given by the skier, the driver gives the motor enough speed to get the skier out of the water.
Some water skiing tips to help you get started are:
- Keep your skis straight
- Maintain good balance
- Stay behind the boat to begin
- As your skills improve, venture over the wake
Even children as young as 5 or 6 can learn to water ski. So go ahead and book some lessons or that water ski vacation you have always wanted!
By Angela Wallace