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Old    Justin Harrelson (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       04-17-2014, 8:00 AM Reply   
Every few years I throw out my rocker line philosophy. The Marketing in the industry really does a good job of confusing the crap out of people and I have a really simple way of looking at it.

First, all boards can go wake to wake and all boards can go into the flats. When a company uses a helicopter vs and airplane or describe a wakeboard and extreme vertical pop vs smooth pop (???), what they are really talking about is DRAG.

3stage vs Continuous doesn't really clear anything up either. There are slow continuous boards (usually called accelerated continuos) and there are fast 3 stage boards (called blended 3 stage or something like that). Forget everything you have read and grab your board and put it on a flat surface. Consider two thing: How much rocker and where the rocker is distributed. As a rule, more rocker equals more drag, but just as important is where is the rocker. More rocker closer to the tip and tail = more drag too.

Aside
Have you ever seen anyone hang ten on a wakeboard? It is totally possible and the first time I saw it, I thought it was a fake photo. The reason is suction. You can put all of your weight on your front foot and you will pull your hip out of socket before you force the nose of your board under water.
End of Aside

The suction created by the tail is increased as the amount of rocker (height and distribution) of rocker moves away from your center of gravity.

Words like slow, drag and suction don't really sell wakeboards, but it does work off the wake for the right type of rider and the right conditions. Only a few years ago, rockers had gotten extreme. 3" of rocker and long flatspots shifting all of the rocker from the center became the norm. Why?? Because wakes were small (compared to the monster wakes of today). The increased drag allowed the board to "sit deeper in the water" and allowed you to build a large wedge of water between you and the boat (load the line) with more intensity--compensating for the small wake. This also lead to extreme boat speeds (heck I was riding 26mph every set only a few years ago).

Today, Wakes are a lot bigger and boat speeds are going down. You can do a lot more with a lot less work. The days of 3" rocker and extreme rocker kicks are over (for now) and most boards fall in the middle mellow category. Only a few riders can still ride an aggressive rockerline well. Most people need to be riding something in the middle. Don't get caught up in the "this board is a wake to wake board" "This board sends you up and not out" salesmanship. All boards can do all things.

When choosing a board ask yourself: "Is my wake on the small and narrow side?" Then you may genuinely benefit from a slower board. If your wake is big and wide a slow board will eat most developing riders lunch. If you don't have the confidence to edge all the way through the wake, while charging a big wake, you are going to lose crossing speed and control very fast on a "wake to wake" (slow) style of board.

I hope this is helpful for riders shopping new boards this spring. Personally, I ride faster boards because I am riding a huge wake and I'm getting a little older. This is my 21st season wakeboarding and I coached many years. I've seen many trends and tech advancements, but the two truths to being a great wakeboarder have always stayed the same: 1.) More time on the water 2.) Making the most of your time on the water. Have a good 2014 everyone.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       04-17-2014, 8:29 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiboarder View Post
Have you ever seen anyone hang ten on a wakeboard? It is totally possible and the first time I saw it, I thought it was a fake photo. The reason is suction. You can put all of your weight on your front foot and you will pull your hip out of socket before you force the nose of your board under water.
Good write up. It definitely sheds some light on what everything is marketed like and what it actually does. I want to see that picture though, how was that done, like at wakeboard speed without bindings like a wakeskate? wakesurfing with a wakeboard? That is the piece of the article that had me re-reading it. If you could post the pic that'd be awesome.
Old    Tim (dezul)      Join Date: Jul 2012       04-17-2014, 8:42 AM Reply   
I am scared to put most of my 225lbs on the nose of the board. I do however typically ride a little more neutral and leaned back. Snowboarding has gotten me accustomed to weighting a tad front heavy. I agree with most of your post.
Old    Justin Harrelson (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       04-17-2014, 8:45 AM Reply   
regular wakeboard at regular speed. We may put the boat in today. I'll post a pic if I do (and it is smooth).
Old    Boat Driver (LYNRDSKYNRD)      Join Date: Sep 2012       04-17-2014, 9:04 AM Reply   
Thanks for the write up, sheds some light on some things for me.
Old    Dave (bcrider)      Join Date: Apr 2006       04-17-2014, 9:49 AM Reply   
I'm 225lbs and can ride toes on the nose. Most people right back foot heavy and you really don't need too. You will never sink your nose. I keep my weight equally between my feet. Snowboarding, yes, you should be over your front foot more...this is what most snowboarders do wrong.
Old    Gene Williams (gene3x)      Join Date: Apr 2005       04-17-2014, 9:50 AM Reply   
I tend to adjust my style of riding over the course of getting on a new wake naturally. Like going from a malibu to an old super air took some really took some adjustments, but after awhile I would adjust my weight (front to back) based on how I hit the wake. I never even paid much attention to rocker other than how it made the board edge.
Old    Justin Harrelson (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       04-17-2014, 11:21 AM Reply   
You shouldn't adjust your weight front to back on any rocker line or any wake. Always be centered (mostly). When you keep your weight centered on a board with more rocker, the tail exerts more upward force. The suction created is what increases the drag.

Also, I am not bagging on slower "wake to wake" boards. They have there conditions and rider. I'm saying a developing rider shouldn't think that if they buy a slower board that it will magically make their trajectory steeper. If you want the benefit, you better have strong consistent edges through the wake because if you come of edge early you will lose all the advantage gained by large late rocker because the board decelerates more quickly than faster boards. The additional drag created by slower boards takes some expertise to convert to additional pop.
Old    Tim (dezul)      Join Date: Jul 2012       04-17-2014, 6:59 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcrider View Post
I'm 225lbs and can ride toes on the nose. Most people right back foot heavy and you really don't need too. You will never sink your nose. I keep my weight equally between my feet. Snowboarding, yes, you should be over your front foot more...this is what most snowboarders do wrong.
I have been snowboarding for 10 years and I disagree with you. If you are confident in your riding ability, you will notice your weight tends to center the board on some areas and go forward on others.
Old    Tim (dezul)      Join Date: Jul 2012       04-17-2014, 7:04 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiboarder View Post
You shouldn't adjust your weight front to back on any rocker line or any wake. Always be centered (mostly). When you keep your weight centered on a board with more rocker, the tail exerts more upward force. The suction created is what increases the drag.

Also, I am not bagging on slower "wake to wake" boards. They have there conditions and rider. I'm saying a developing rider shouldn't think that if they buy a slower board that it will magically make their trajectory steeper. If you want the benefit, you better have strong consistent edges through the wake because if you come of edge early you will lose all the advantage gained by large late rocker because the board decelerates more quickly than faster boards. The additional drag created by slower boards takes some expertise to convert to additional pop.
I am still trying to grasp what you mean by slower w2w riders. I hit the wake at different cuts to achieve the pop I am desiring. People need to learn line tension and cutting. Boards will differ when they take the same approach on two different boards.
Old    Justin Harrelson (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       04-18-2014, 11:18 AM Reply   
Exactly. It's the rider not the board.
Old    Tom (boardjnky4)      Join Date: Dec 2011       04-18-2014, 11:40 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by dezul View Post
I am still trying to grasp what you mean by slower w2w riders. I hit the wake at different cuts to achieve the pop I am desiring. People need to learn line tension and cutting. Boards will differ when they take the same approach on two different boards.
Some riders that don't have a lot of versatility (some may say they are "one trick ponies") probably don't change up the way that they jump. Advanced riders know that for spin moves they should take a slower approach with more leg push. They also know that they should take a faster, higher line tension approach for a Raley. Versus a rider that never gets out of their comfort zone, and who is content just doing the same basic tricks (which is their decision, some people just want to have fun and not get hurt) might always hit the wake the same way.

Also, Some riders (actually, I would venture to say most riders) also have set "styles", maybe prefering spins to inverts. Maybe prefering tantrum-based inverts to raley-based inverts. That might influence the type of approach and pop that they TYPICALLY (not always, but most of the time) go for.
Old     (Ttime41)      Join Date: Nov 2011       04-18-2014, 12:01 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by boardjnky4 View Post
Some riders that don't have a lot of versatility (some may say they are "one trick ponies") probably don't change up the way that they jump. Advanced riders know that for spin moves they should take a slower approach with more leg push. They also know that they should take a faster, higher line tension approach for a Raley. Versus a rider that never gets out of their comfort zone, and who is content just doing the same basic tricks (which is their decision, some people just want to have fun and not get hurt) might always hit the wake the same way.

Also, Some riders (actually, I would venture to say most riders) also have set "styles", maybe prefering spins to inverts. Maybe prefering tantrum-based inverts to raley-based inverts. That might influence the type of approach and pop that they TYPICALLY (not always, but most of the time) go for.
If I may ask, what is a raley-based invert? I don't think I've ever seen someone go upside down after a raley
Old    Tom (boardjnky4)      Join Date: Dec 2011       04-18-2014, 12:28 PM Reply   
I don't really know. I've never done one lol. I've seen some raleys where the person looked to have their feet over their heads. Regardless of the semantics of the sentence, I think it still holds true "... raley based tricks."
Old    Henry Gates (captain_vilfo)      Join Date: Apr 2007       04-18-2014, 1:53 PM Reply   
Raleys are sometimes considered "inverts", I know on Learnwake they have them listed as that
Old    Jason Buffalow (buffalow)      Join Date: Apr 2002       04-18-2014, 2:55 PM Reply   
Look up Shane Bonifay TS Front roll - That was pretty much a one hand raley to front roll. They called it a superman front flip
Old    Alain (ak4life)      Join Date: Nov 2003       04-20-2014, 12:52 PM Reply   
Quote:
tantrum-based inverts to raley-based inverts
Quote:
what is a raley-based invert? I don't think I've ever seen someone go upside down after a raley
I think maybe he's talking about inverts where you get off your edge (e.g. tantrum or scarecrow) vs edging all the through the wake. For the latter, I think of Jim Aikin's roll to revert or Billy Tonis' insane one armed backroll.

Here's a news story with a vid of Billy's backroll: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qyVuav_84Q8
Old    Alain (ak4life)      Join Date: Nov 2003       04-20-2014, 12:54 PM Reply   
Justin -- thanks for this post, I learned something new! Never even considered suction as a factor (other than describing my skills). :-)
Old    Nick Schrein (wakeboardern1)      Join Date: Aug 2007       04-21-2014, 5:54 AM Reply   
To the guy wanting pics/video of it.

http://vimeo.com/20215533#t=94s

Hangin ten on a wakeboard. Link should take you to the time where he does it. Otherwise, it's at 1:34.

He got up with his feet out of the bindings, then sat down and changed his position. It's the same principle as one footing on a wakeskate.
Old    Orion (chillinoj)      Join Date: May 2009       04-21-2014, 7:21 AM Reply   
Great write up Justin, Fun to read and well written
Old    Gene Williams (gene3x)      Join Date: Apr 2005       04-21-2014, 7:38 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiboarder View Post
You shouldn't adjust your weight front to back on any rocker line or any wake. Always be centered (mostly). When you keep your weight centered on a board with more rocker, the tail exerts more upward force. The suction created is what increases the drag.
p.
What I am talking about is similar to an ollie where you quickly pump front to back or at least in my mind is what it feels like to me as I hit the wake. Or could be why I never seem to progress much anymore.
Old    Justin Harrelson (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       04-21-2014, 9:46 AM Reply   
Gene, I'd try losing the pump and work on smoothly driving through the wake and pushing off both feet nice and even at the top. Give it a couple of tries starting small and slowly crank up the intensity. Timing a pop off the tail would be super tough.

Also, you may already be doing this, but don't time your pop/push with your eyes. Look at the wake on your way in, but start to look where you are going to land as you climb the wake. Go by feel. When the wake shoves you, shove it back.
Old    Jason Huffman (jhuff79)      Join Date: Mar 2005       04-24-2014, 9:16 PM Reply   
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When I first tried to "hangten" It was when I was done with a set. I loosed the bindings and wiggled one foot out then the other placing the front foot in front of the font binding and the back in front of the back binding. Put your back hand on the front binding and step over the binding shift your feet into the "hangten" and your there. It is easier to get up on the board like a wake skate and just skip the part where you have to get out of the bindings.
Old    Justin Harrelson (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       04-25-2014, 6:15 AM Reply   
Nice.
Old    Dave (bcrider)      Join Date: Apr 2006       04-25-2014, 11:16 AM Reply   
Tim - If you talk to snowboard instructors they will tell you to keep more of your weight on your front foot...especially for learning as it makes it an easier pivot point to move your back foot for turning. Like the falling leaf on a board. You're shifting your weight to decide which direction the board will slide. I'll agree that I ride with my weight fairly centered as well. If you are running a straight line or bombing a hill try moving your weight forward. You'll most likely catch your friends and pass them. If anything I would say as long as you are either forward or centered and not over your rear foot. That's what I have learned in my 21 years of riding.

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