On a simialr subject, great post from dallas wakeboarding.com
What is Wakeboarding?
What is wakeboarding? The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language defines wakeboarding as “a short, very broad water ski ridden in the manner of a surfboard by a person towed by a motorboat”. Pretty simple, right? It’s just a form of
waterskiing. All it is is something to do on a hot day in the middle of the summer to cool off. So why is there such a fuss about it? Why does Google pull up 816,000 websites containing wakeboarding? Why is there wakeboarding in the X-Games? Why does wakeboarding have its own Pro Tour? Why are you reading this?
Why? Because wakeboarding is much more than a sport. Have you ever sat down and thought of what wakeboarding really is? Sure, to a lot of you, wakeboarding is just a sport. You participate when you want to, and do other things when you are not wakeboarding, without giving it as much as another thought. But, to the others, especially those that are still reading this (and paying attention); wakeboarding is not just a sport.
I have been wakeboarding since August 24, 1994. Anytime before this date is now known as the BW Era (Before Wakeboarding). During my BW Era, I water-skied, I knee boarded, I tubed, and generally, I just screwed around on the water. However, once I got up for the first time on a wakeboard, I never looked back. There was something different about wakeboarding versus the other water sports. Wakeboarding gave me more freedom when I was behind the boat. I had more options when I was riding. It seemed to me that I was being sucked into something that instantly tried to take over my life. Wakeboarding soon turned into a drug that I could not live without…something that I simply couldn’t get enough of. And, as I got more involved with wakeboarding, I noticed that the same feeling spread to those that were around me.
Now, odds are, if you are still reading this and comprehending what I am saying, then you probably feel the same way about wakeboarding as I do. So what do you say when someone asks you what wakeboarding is? Have you ever really thought about what wakeboarding is to you?
Wakeboarding isn’t just when you are riding behind the boat. It is much more complex than that. To me, Wakeboarding is:
Sitting in the lake for almost an hour while waiting for the fat sacs to fill, and thinking that there is no place you would rather be
Floating in the river at 11pm, asking “who’s up next?”
Watching your best friend land a trick for the first time, and making him come in the boat so you can go learn it real quick
Butterflies in your stomach before you ride (especially in tourneys)
Having more than one wakeboarding decal on your vehicle
Making a pact with your buddies the night before you go ride to all try a raley, and then having to hold up your end of the bargain
Having a coffee table in your living room made out of a wakeboard
The expression on someone’s face as they get up for the first time
Getting a new knee
When your life vest doesn’t dry out all season
Holding the safety bar on a ride at the fair, imagining that it is a wakeboard handle and you are doing inverts
Being hauled off in a sheriffs boat because you jumped over the nose of his boat when he had someone else pulled over
Naming your dog “Belmont”
Teaching an 8 year old his first invert, then watching him learn 10 more in less than a year
The smell of an outboard engine
Teeing off on the back 9, thinking, “only 2.5 hours until we are on the water”
Throwing triple ups until you run out of gas
Basing every one of your projects in your marketing classes on wakeboarding
Running a victory lap in the boat in perfectly calm water around your buddy that just landed an invert he had been working on forever
Pulling the boat to school so we can hit the water as soon as we get out
Filling up the fat sacs at my buddy’s house with his water hose to save time
Keeping a calendar on the wall of every time you ride, and noticing that you only missed 3 days within 3 months
High Wake Drifters
A tux with solid black Reefs
Having to cut bindings off of your friends’ foot due to a bad fall
Spending only two nights in your own bed in the month of July because you are on the road doing clinics
Giving props and celebrating with the guy that just beat you in a tourney, instead of being upset about it
Standing on top of a house boat, and hearing some guy tell his buddy that the fat sacs in my boat are in there to help balance the boat to make the wake smoother for slaloming
Hopping around the living room in your board and bindings
Riding almost 12 hours a day, then coming home and watching wakeboarding videos
The sun stabbing your shoulders cause you have been out every day that week
The UPS man bringing you your new board
Teaching someone from a tube that is tied 10 feet in front of them
Watching your buddy take crash after crash on raleys, but still getting back up for more
Driving the boat all day even though you can’t ride
Someone that you have never seen before in your life recognizing the Hyperlite symbol on your hat, and striking up an hour long conversation
The rivers, lakes, bayous and ditches we have all ridden in
Landing an invert on your first attempt
Having a wakeboard banner on the wall in your house
Having all 4 board racks full on your boat and still have boards on the floor
Louisiana Spring Fling
Running to the marina on your lunch break to get a quick pull
The latest WBM
Wakeboarding one weekend, snowboarding the following, and wakeboarding the next
Blood all over your brand new white handle
Having a triple up smack you so hard, you come up out of the water with your fists clenched looking for who hit you
Hitting a dip in the road in your truck, and trying to think of ways you can hit it faster, get some air, and tweak it out
Triple up whip-its
Wakeboarding with snow blowing out of the boat
Having some form of a wakeboard symbol on at least one piece of your clothing at all times
And the list goes on and on. But, there is one simple point that I am trying to express. To some, wakeboarding is a sport, but to others, it is a lifestyle. There are tons of riders that come and go, and then there are riders that are involved no matter what the consequences.
As riders, we are loyal to the Wakeboarding. We defend it when it is attacked, we embrace it each time we are out on the boat, and we support it by hosting tourneys, clinics and demos. We want to spread the stoke of wakeboarding to all, but at the same time, we keep some things secret so we can enjoy it in our selfish ways. We support the companies that deliver wakeboarding to our doorstep, and we curse those that try to take it away from us. We get upset when we have an off day on the water, yet we continue to come back for more. And, we continue to push ourselves to the mental and physical limits that are involved with wakeboarding, each and every day.
So, if you ever get the chance, ask yourself what Wakeboarding is to you, and really put some thought into it. To me, Wakeboarding is not just a sport, but it is a lifestyle. It is my lifestyle.
Posted on Wednesday, September 29 @ 13:21:25 EST by reid