It is officially summer (at least in Florida). Winter decided to be surprisingly long and miserable this year and, of course, had every rider complaining about it. But it is finally over. All of the wetsuits and tops have been put away and we can enjoy being sweaty and sunburnt for the next five months. We have already had days over 90ºF (for those who have no idea what that means it’s over 32ºC) and it’s not going to let up anytime soon. So if you are still dealing with snow and wetsuits, you should probably ask yourself one question... what the hell am I doing?
Unfortunately, at this moment in time, I may as well be in the same position as many of you. I’m currently writing this from the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court in downtown Orlando where I am fulfilling my civil responsibilities in jury duty. At this time, all of my friends are probably out riding and enjoying this amazing day and I’m stuck dreaming about the various lakes that I would love to be on. Not cool.
At least I have my computer and I’m able to really sit down and be captivated by all of the recent wakeboard footage that has been released online. It seems like everyone has flipped a switch since the weather has turned around. They are excited to ride and motivated to escape the typical winter riding routine. Instead of going out and doing all of the normal tricks, there seems to be a drive to progress their riding and, at the same time, progress the sport.
I haven’t seen this amount of passion or ambition in the wakeboard industry in a long time and I just hope it keeps going. I’m not sure if it is the fact that riders are getting bored with what they are doing, a desire to be recognized as an elite rider in our sport or a goal of being considered for this year’s “Move of the Year” award, but whatever it is, I love it. Every time I turn on a computer it seems like somebody new has landed a 10 or has done something crazy. I just want to say thank you to everyone for inspiring us and being a driving force for progression in this industry.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that we all need to go out and learn the craziest and hardest new tricks, but we should learn from the progression that these riders are exemplifying and implement it into our own riding. Take a chance and step out of your comfort zone every once in a while. You may be surprised to find out what you are capable of (or incredibly disappointed). Either way you will experience the excitement of trying something new and you will learn from it.
I know that most of you have already seen these videos, but below is a taste of what has been inspiring me since the beginning of this year. Hopefully you will find them to be as motivating as I have or at least enjoy the fact that they have all been compiled onto one page for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy and brace yourself for what will be an incredible season of wakeboarding.
Editor's note: A special thanks goes out to all the people involved in capturing, editing and bringing you these videos. Without them, you wouldn't be able to witness the progression. Thanks to Chad Sharpe, Trevor Hansen, Nick Jones, Nick Davies, WakeGirls, Spencer Norris, Norbi Vasko and anybody else out there working hard to bring the riding to the masses.