Wakesurfing is a sport where a rider surfs the boat wake very closely behind an inboard boat. A good rider is able to stay in the sweet spot of the wave without holding onto a rope.
Too many boats on the water? Windy? You'd rather avoid high speed face to water explosions? Wakesurfing is a fun way to spend the day, especially when you do not have glassy water to go wakeboarding. There is also plenty of potential for the passengers on the boat to have close up views of some great wipeouts.
To choose a wakesurf board, consider:
Wakesurfers span a wide array of shapes in order to accomodate for different riding styles and ability levels. Wakesurfers are measured in feet and inches like surfboards. There are no strict length recommendations. Below are guidelines for choosing a bigger or smaller wakesurfer.
Bigger wakesurfers have more surface area and more float, which means they work well for heavier riders. If you are riding behind a boat that throws a smaller wake, choose a bigger board. Larger wakesurfers move more slowly through the water and are easier for beginners to learn on.
Smaller wakesurfers are more maneuverable, spry and faster on the wave. These are an excellent choice for more advanced riders and lighter weight riders. Big wakes will support use of a smaller wakesurfer.
Wakesurf board shapes come from the surf and skimboard worlds, and tend to fall into 3 general categories: thruster style surf shapes, skim board style shapes, and "hybrid" shapes that combine the two.
Smaller in size and with less buoyancy, skim style wakesurf boards are made to be more playful in the water. They also have smaller fins and fewer bottom (hull) features, creating a board that is slippery and borderline rowdy on the water. Unlike surf style boards that track up and down the face of the wave, a skim board wants to spin, slide, and do anything but stay on the straight and narrow!
Just what you might imagine: a mix between surf and skim. There are a huge variety of hybrid shapes, but skim style shapes equipped with surf fins and surf style shapes with smaller skim fins fall into this category, too. The goal of these boards is to combine the playfulness of a skim board with the power of a surf board.
Less Rocker: This makes your board faster on the wake and give you a smoother feel.
More Rocker: This causes your wakesurf board to be slower and tend to plow through the water but react more dramatically with the wave.
Just like a surfboard in the ocean, a thinner rail on a wakesurfer bites into the boat wave and is faster, quicker and less forgiving. Thicker rails are slower and more forgiving.
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