Wakeboarding is a favorite for many campers, providing tons of adrenaline and fun in a super safe environment. (After all, the worst that can happen is you fall in the lake… and campers are constantly doing that on purpose anyway!)
The only tricky part about wakeboarding is remembering everything you learned the year before. Like any seasonal activity, staying in practice year-round is pretty difficult. (Unless you live somewhere with warm winters and happen to have a boat and lake at your disposal, that is!)
So how can you practice at home so you’re in top form when it’s your turn to hit the lake?
We’ve gathered some of the best ways to stay on top of your wakeboarding game. Get ready to impress your camp friends when they see how many tricks you can do!
Note: as with any sport or fitness activity, always wear safety equipment, stay within your limits, and only practice with a qualified instructor to keep everything safe and fun.
1. Practice your board skills with snowboarding or skateboarding
The hardest part of wakeboarding can be simply balancing on the board. Luckily, snowboarding and skateboarding both build similar skills, so if you can get out on the slopes or make it down to the local skate park, you can practice your balance all year round!
The best part is that both sports are super fun in their own right — and they’ll make sure you have killer board handling skills by the time summer camp rolls around.
You can also consider using a balance board, which gives some of the same advantages as a skateboard without requiring you to leave your room or the gym. You could even watch Netflix while you practice!
2. Improve your balance by adding exercises to your routine
If you already have a stretching or workout routine that you follow at least once a week, consider adding some balance-focussed exercises to the mix! Exercises that improve your balance are surprisingly simple: practice balancing on one leg for 30+ seconds, then build up to hopping on one foot, and doing one-legged squats and lunges.
Pro tip: closing your eyes makes these exercises twice as hard, but will have huge rewards when you get on the board.
3. Study up on YouTube
When it comes to learning specific tricks, YouTube is your best friend. Instructors all over the world have videos you can watch for free that break down each trick into step-by-step challenges, and you can play them over and over until you’ve got a handle on the mechanics of the trick.
4. Trampoline time!
Yup, wakeboarding is your excuse to play around on the school trampoline!
A trampoline is surprisingly effective at simulating the wakeboarding experience, and gives you a chance to practice a tricky move over… and over… and over again, until you’re absolutely sure you’re ready to give it a shot on the lake.
Plus, jumping on a trampoline is just plain fun!
Success comes to those who expect it, and summer camp activities are no different. If you’re excited about another fun season of wakeboarding, go ahead and let yourself get stoked about it!
Visualize yourself doing the tricks you enjoy, and practice them mentally while doing less exciting activities (like sorting your clothes, for example). How did it feel to grind that steep wake? How did it feel to land that spin?
Summer is always right around the corner, and it’ll be time to get out on the lake again before you know it. Can’t wait to see you there — be ready for some serious watersport fun!