Are you looking for something new to do out on the water aside from cruising, swimming or fishing? You have come to the right spot. There are a variety of watersports just waiting to be tried – who knows, you might just find your next passion.
The most common watersports are swimming, kayaking, canoeing, paddleboarding, wakeboarding, tubing, and waterskiing, among many others.In this blog, we will go over 10 of the best watersports for beginners.
Wakeboarding can be a great choice for all skill levels – the motto “if at first you do not succeed, try again” is perfect for this sport. It may take a few times to get up on the board, but once you do, you will absolutely love it. It doesn't take too much investment to get started either, just a wakeboard, rope and life vest (obviously a jet ski or boat as well). If you are wanting to take your wakeboarding to the next level, it is highly recommended that you install a wakeboard tower onto your boat if you do not already have one to raise your tow point and get more air.
There are plenty of guides and videos out there to help you learn the basics to wakeboarding; however, just getting out there and trying it yourself is going to be the best way to learn. Once you have mastered getting up on the board and staying up for an extended amount of time, you may even dare to try some beginner wakeboard tricks.
Perhaps the most popular and also the easiest of the water sports, tubing is great for basically all ages and levels of water sport athletes. While you will need a tube and a tow rope, it is important to note that tubes require specific kinds of towing ropes and one should never pull a tube from a wakeboard tower. There are other options for the perfect tube towing experience, including the TurboSwing - the only tube-rated tow bar on the market.
Because tubing really only requires you to hold on, people of all ages and skill levels are able to do it. It really just depends on the driver of the boat and the type of tube you have that makes the experience. Some riders like to just be pulled nice and easy across the water while others want the exhilarating feel of holding on for dear life. That is what makes tubing so popular and great for beginners in watersports.
Kneeboarding is perfect for older kids and adults who want to enjoy the water; but, want something more advanced than tubing. Like wakeboarding, you will need a kneeboard, tow rope with a handle, and a life vest. The main difference is that instead of standing on the board you will be kneeling on it.
Kneeboarding does not take extensive amounts of skill, but it does require core strength and balance. You will start by laying on your stomach on the board with your elbows resting in the knee pads. Most kneeboards have a small hook like feature on the front of the board, you can rest the handle here and use it to pull yourself up onto the board as the boat starts to pull. While pulling yourself up into a kneeling position, you will adjust the strap on your knees and pull the handle up from the board to about mid torso level and viola, you will be kneeboarding. To control the board, you will use your weight. Shifting your weight from one side to the other will be how you maneuver the water. If you want to stay straight, try to stay as balanced as possible. Once you feel comfortable, you can try shifting your weight and or even doing some tricks.
If you have gone snow skiing and enjoyed the experience, you probably will enjoy water skiing as well. It is said that water skiing is a good watersport for beginners to get into because it offers lessons in balancing on the water while being pulled. Similar to wakeboarding, you start in the water (or on a dock) with your feet in the skis and holding onto the tow rope. The boat will start to move and as it moves, you will begin to be pulled up and out of the water until you are on top of it. The key here is to try and keep your legs in the same position while being pulled. They do make training skis which have a piece that connects both skis together. Once you are comfortable with them, you can move onto regular skis. Remember, it is okay to fall, just keep getting back up.
Following wakeboarding, wakesurfing is very similar. It is slightly different from wakeboarding because you only use the tow rope to get up onto the board. Once you are up and on the water, you will let go of the rope and the momentum will keep you going. Wakesurfing is considered to be more mellow and beginner-friendly than wakeboarding. This is partially because it does not require calm water; in fact, choppier water may make it easier.
Wakesurfers will ride the wake right behind the boat and the waves will keep the rider going. Like wakeboarding, you will maneuver the water using your weight and shifting it from leg to leg. While wakesurfing, it is crucial to have the right equipment and a good fitting life vest and someone keeping an eye on you while the driver is in control of the boat.
Hydrofoiling and foil surfing are slightly more advanced than the other sports, but if you are up for a slight challenge, these are the sports for you. It just takes practice and willpower. Hydrofoiling technology uses the water to propel the board forward. Both wakeboards and surfboards can be modified with the hydrofoil fin. Similar to wakesurfing, you will start on the hydrofoil board with the rope behind the boat and then will let go when you are comfortable. Hydrofoiling is great for calm water and we recommend doing it away from crowds. There are plenty of videos out there to help beginners get started.
Stand Up Paddleboarding
The best part of paddleboarding? You only need the water and a paddleboard with its paddle. You can either sit or stand on a paddleboard. This can be a great way to relax and enjoy the water or turn it into a good workout. Paddleboarding is all about balance. You will have to keep yourself balanced to stay on the board, but you can move at your own pace. This is the perfect sport for beginners because you are able to go at your own speed and make it as laid back or rigorous as you want.
Similar to paddleboarding, kayaking is great for beginners because you can go at your own speed. The only equipment required to participate are a kayak, paddle, and life vest. You also will need some balance while in the kayak and arm strength/stamina while rowingKayaking can be quite relaxing if you find the right spot and some calm water. It is simple, once you are in your kayak - just alternate how you are paddling with a double-sided paddle to propel yourself forward. Do the same in reverse to go backwards.
A little more intense than kayaking, canoeing is another great sport for beginners. It uses a wooden, open-deck vessel and a one-sided paddle. Going canoeing with someone else makes it a lot easier. With canoeing, you will use a one-sided paddle and alternate sides to propel the boat forward. If you are with someone else, you can both paddle on alternate sides instead of having to constantly switch like you would as a single rider. Canoes are bigger vessels than kayaks and made out of wood, so they are a bit heavier and thus require more strength when paddling. Regardless, it is still a great watersport for beginners to enjoy.
Bodyboarding is another good beginner sport because all that is needed is a boogie board and some waves. Like surfing, you will paddle out into the water using only your arms until you reach the crest of a wave, but instead of standing up, you will just turn around and ride the wave while riding on your board. Another difference is that bodyboarding requires smaller waves than surfing. You can pick them and ride as far as you want or will go. The only requirement here is that you are a strong swimmer, otherwise, bodyboarding can be great for beginners.
There are way more watersports out there; but, we decided to share 10 of the ones we thought were best for beginners. So get out there on the water and give any of these sports a go. Just keep trying no matter how many times you fall.