Wakeboarding is a water sport where a rider, standing on a wakeboard, is towed behind a motorboat across its wake and sometimes up into the air. The sport combines elements of water skiing, snowboarding, and surfing. Riders perform tricks and jumps, using the boat's wake as a ramp. Skills involved include balance, strength, agility, and the ability to perform aerial maneuvers. Scoring in competitions is based on the execution of tricks, including their difficulty, style, and variety. Judges assess the performance, and higher scores are awarded for more complex and cleanly executed tricks.
Wakeboarding is popular in countries with accessible waterways, like the United States, Australia, Canada, and parts of Europe. There are several professional leagues and international competitions, such as the Wakeboard World Series and the IWWF World Wakeboard Championships.
Wakeboarding emerged in the 1980s from a blend of water skiing, snowboarding, and surfing. Initially known as skurfing, it involved riders being towed on surfboards behind boats. The sport evolved with the introduction of specialized wakeboards, designed for greater maneuverability and aerial capabilities. This transformation allowed riders to perform more complex tricks, akin to those in skateboarding and snowboarding. The 1990s saw the official naming of the sport as "wakeboarding" and the establishment of professional competitions.
With the development of better equipment, including the wakeboard and the towing boats, the sport rapidly grew in popularity and complexity, solidifying its place in water sports and leading to the creation of various international wakeboarding events.
Wakeboarding is evolving with new technology and a growing global fanbase. Advances in equipment, like lighter, more durable wakeboards and more powerful boats, are enabling higher jumps and more complex tricks. Cable wakeboarding, where riders are pulled by an overhead cable system instead of a boat, is gaining popularity, making the sport more accessible and environmentally friendly.
The sport's inclusion in international multi-sport events, like the World Beach Games, signifies its rising status. With the increasing use of social media for sharing techniques and experiences, the wakeboarding community is becoming more connected and vibrant. These trends suggest a bright future for wakeboarding, with broader participation and continued innovation.
After riding on a wakeboard and you start to approach a wake (small rippling wave), you want to prepare by bending your knees as if you were sitting in a chair, after that you want to start progressively turning into the wake and hit it with the front side of your wakeboard.
The wakeboard era began in 1985 when a San Diego surfer named Tony Finn invented the Skurfer, it was a hybrid between a water ski and a surfboard. Finn supported his Skurfer vigorously and was quite effective in raising awareness of the new sport among people. Now wakeboarding is a fast-growing water sport.
Burning calories while wakeboarding varies from gender, weight, and duration. On average, a 130-lbs (59 kg) person would burn around 330 calories in an hour vs a 175-lbs (79 kg) person burns 500 calories an hour. Wakeboarding builds your core, arm and leg strength so participating in the watersport is a good workout.