View Full Version : Secret Of Teaching Wakeboarding

08-06-2011, 10:14 AM
I haven't been very successful at teaching new riders to board lately . I board , my wife boards , my 12 year old boards, my 8 year old boards. I have taught people in the past , but just in the last 2 weeks i have tried to teach 3 different people with no luck. Seems like they are really fighting the boat and to much pressure against the water. Help.

08-06-2011, 10:24 AM
I get in the water, hold their life jacket to balance them and tell them to concentrate on keeping their tip up. Give the boat a little idle and hang on until the boat takes off. Just drag behind them until they really get going. You letting go and the speed almost shoots them right up. Good luck! Wearing no life jacket works best, you are more of a weight and a lot easier to keep them upright.

Good luck!

08-06-2011, 10:29 AM
Make sure they relax and let the board come to their butt.

08-06-2011, 12:18 PM
We have more trouble teaching newbie adults than kids. The really try to fight the boat. Something they learned on skis (usually 20 years ago). Best analogy we give the kids is to think about somebody helping you to your feet when you're sitting on the ground. You can do this on the boat. Just take two hands and pull them up and forward. They have to stand up (they have to help the process). Even with some good advice and demo's, grown ups seem to struggle more with this.

08-06-2011, 12:44 PM
I have been very successful by putting them in the water and hand pulling them to the swim grid from about 5 feet from the boat and have them bend their knees so the board touches their butt...arms straight and dont try and stand up...let the boat pull you...the hand pull shows them the sensation they will experience when you use the boat and they will be much more relaxed without the boat running.

I then give them about 15 feet of rope and attached to the tower and I use the boat (slow and steady) pull them out of the water 3 times so they get the feel for getting up....the short rope helps pull them straight up and out of the water...once they are up I stop and start them again to practise 3 times...the short rope also has them close to the boat for instruction.

I then put the rope at about 60 feet and they usually get the hang of it and they are off to years of fun.:)

I have used this technique for both children and adults and have had great luck with it...probably about 40 people and i am no instructer by any means!

Good luck and have fun.

08-06-2011, 01:12 PM
Thanks for the feedback ..... i will try the short rope method .... i would agree that adults are harder , they try to muscle up rather than letting the boat and board work together. I even had one of my good friends out last weekend , ( he hadn't been out in about 1 year )... we grew up together on kneeboards, salom, barefooting.. you name it we could do it if it was on the water. To my amazement , i could not get him up on a board and his forearms were in pain for 3 day after. Thats what started me thinking , maybe i was doing something wrong ( but we board 3-4 times a week , how wrong could i be.... LOL )

08-06-2011, 03:20 PM
I mostly ski but have been boarding since 06. (I'm not very good) I've taught a few people to board, but had a really difficult time teaching one particular friend. He was fighting the board so much and popping the handle. We took a lesson with a pro and he told him to push down and stand up on the board sooner. He got right up. He had him set up with the rope out 75'. He then pulled him forward just using his hands to pull the rope in and told him what to do. I was surprised that with just his hands pulling in rope that my buddy was able to pretty much stand up. Pro's name was Eric Gerner iirc. Nice guy. Won boardstock one year I think.

08-08-2011, 09:08 AM
Make sure they relax and let the board come to their butt.

Tex nailed it in my opinion.

We do a dry run on the back of the boat first. I get them to sit on the sun deck facing the front of the boat. I usually have them put their heels in the seam between the rear seat back rest and the locker lid. Give them the handle and give a gently pull and get them to slide their butt to their heels. As soon as they try to stand up too soon (before their butt gets to their heels), I stop and tell them that they just fell. Repeat until they get it right.

Good luck, we've taught kids from 10 to 50 using this method.:D

08-08-2011, 09:39 AM
board to butt works. I have gotten everyone up within the first few tries. I give them instructions on position which are.... knees in chest, elbows around your knees and when the board comes to your butt stand up. I let them float out a few feet then pull the rope so they know what to expect and just go. I think it's harder to teach them (kids) how to flip over onto their back after they fall than it is getting them up.

08-08-2011, 10:21 AM
+1 for board to butt. Most guys, especially those that excel at ball sports, tend to overthink and try to strategize. Girls are more like "doh-de-doh-doh o look I'm wakeboarding". The simpler you can keep it, the better. I also tell everyone else in the boat not to throw out tips. If they have suggestions, tell me, and I'll relay. That way the person in the water's not trying to decipher 8 different messages.

Honkity Hank
08-10-2011, 08:11 PM
Best investment I made was to get a barefoot boom. Makes teaching so easy, literally teach them without falling in matter of minutes. 10 minutes from never on a board to up and boarding. Another great feature is the other people on the boat don't get bored and anxious trying to coach to the poor soul up.

Honkity Hank
08-12-2011, 11:21 AM
Also have them watch these videos



There is one more in his series but it just basically an advert for the boom (....video3/..).

I show these to kids I am teaching and find that most really like learning this way. Show the videos, have them practice the basic positions on land and then move to the boat. If you don't have boom these will still help but won't go as quickly behind the boat.

08-14-2011, 04:15 AM
ditto on the board to butt technique...if you have someone that is experienced at skiing trying to board for the first time they will often lay back straight legged and fight the boat trying to get up...with skis on this technique will get you up...but it is quite different in boarding

I always suggest to 1) bend your knees at much as possible in the staging phase (knees in the chest); 2) make sure when the boat starts to idle and the rope is tight to not have any of the board out in the air, that is you want to angle the board so the incoming water will give you a full lift (point your toes toward the boat); 3) as the boat pulls you up, stand up and pull the handle to your dominant hip (left for most people)

when people fight the boat they most often fail to do #2

08-16-2011, 08:11 PM
My biggest problem as a driver was trying to pull them out too fast. especially with the smaller riders I learned that the slower the better and if they had their body and board in the right position, they would pop out with very little accelleration.

08-17-2011, 12:31 AM
Tell them not to stand up, seriously. Alot of people try to stand up too soon and fight the boat. Once they are on top of the water and riding, you can tell them to stand up. Plus when they get up sideways (as most do), they have less distance to fall and faceplant the water if they aren't standing.

08-17-2011, 01:02 PM
I tell them to get into the "chair" position, just like beginner two ski...with the board under water. Knees bent, arms straight, keep your eyes on the boat, don't look down.

Teach them to slightly pull the handle to the hip (on their lead foot side) once they break the surface of the water.

Pull them up very gently and the board will rise very quickly...there is a huge amount of surface area.

Never had a failure yet with this method.