As you advance in your journey of learning how to wakeboard you are likely excited to feel the delight of the watersport as you try your hand at new, more complicated tricks. As you learn these tricks though, it can be easy to forget the simple things that continue to make wakeboarding fun for both beginners and legends alike. One of these simple, but exhilarating wakeboarding tricks is the powerslide. Not only will you feel cool as you make spray in the water, but you will look cool doing it as well!
If you feel comfortable on the water performing some simple maneuvers and spins, then you are probably ready for the powerslide, so read on in this guide to learn how to perform this popular wakeboarding trick that’s great for beginners! If you are just starting out though, be sure to start learning how to wakeboard by reading our how-to wakeboard guide first.
What is a powerslide?
The powerslide, or power spray, is a simple, timeless wakeboarding trick that does not require much body movement, making it great for beginner wakeboarders. If you want to look like the pros out on the water as you create spray, however, then be ready to practice! You will need to find your style with this move to make it look smooth and make an even bigger spray. During the trick, you will turn your board backside 90 degrees, so being comfortable with maneuvering your wakeboard is a must!
Moves to Know Before Learning the Powerslide
First and foremost, before you attempt this wakeboarding trick make sure you are comfortable with your heel side edge! Many wakeboarders actually avoid this trick because they are not comfortable with heel side, so practicing that before you take on the powerslide will help. Also, this move is best saved for smooth water – the glassier the better! If you attempt a powerslide on rough waters you are far more likely to wipe out than create any spray
Here are the beginner wakeboarding moves you should know before you try learning the powerslide:
- Getting up on the wakeboard – Before you can even start riding the wake you should know how to get up on the wakeboard. Just remember that every wakeboarding move requires patience and practice, so getting started may take time.
- Edging – Edging, or moving your wakeboard from side to side while riding within the wake, requires balance and some ability to maneuver the board with your body. As you edge you will be moving between toe side and heel side, and as being comfortable with heel side is crucial to performing a powerslide, edging is a beginner move you will want master first!
- Crossing the wake – Knowing how to shift your body weight while riding is key to a lot of wakeboarding moves, even beginner ones. Over time if you practice crossing the wake (moving in and out of the wake) you will learn how to move the board and shift your body weight. This makes it easier to move on to those more advanced tricks.
Trying to perform a powerslide on waters that are not smooth will pose a risk to your safety as it increases your risk of skipping out and being thrown into the water. Any time you are wakeboarding (even if you are only performing beginner-level wakeboarding tricks) be prepared so you ride safely. If you are not sure what gear and equipment you need as a rider to wakeboard safely, check out our wakeboarding gear blog!
How to Perform a Powerslide on a Wakeboard
The powerslide is a more complex beginner move, so be ready to try this one multiple times before you get it right. It is complex because it requires a number of different maneuvers in order to perform it correctly, so you will definitely need to approach it in steps. The goal is to skim the water’s surface with the front edge of you wakeboard, which is how you create that awesome spray. However, in order to get the front edge in place to make the spray happen, you need to go heel side and make a quick rotation, meaning you will need to have those other basic moves down first if you want those two to three seconds of exhilarating spray while you are out on the water.
6 Steps to Doing a Powerslide
After you have the heel side edge down and you are comfortable with spins, you are ready to take on the powerslide! Always start slow and remember that this is best attempted in steps, so here are six steps for you to follow when performing this wakeboarding trick:
- Start next to the wake opposite of your forward foot.
- Edge heel side toward the left wake.
- Cut out hard and edge into the flats.
- As you are cutting, kick your back foot in the same direction, take your back hand off the handle and relax your front arm.
- Lean away from the boat so your toes are in the water and your heels are in the air. This step will take time for you to find the right amount of lean.
- Your wakeboard should be perpendicular to the boat. Once you are at a 90 degree angle, move it back to pointing forward and you are ready to do it again!
Common Beginner Mistake with the Powerslide
One of the most common errors beginners make when learning how to do the powerslide on a wakeboard is breaking too much at the waist. This makes it difficult for the wakeboard’s fins to release off the water, which means a smaller spray during the move. To get bigger spray, stretch our your body. You will know you are doing the trick right if you see a big spray, but you can also pay attention to your body and board. Your chest should get closer to the water level and your board should be (almost) perpendicular to the water’s surface.
Perfect Your Wakeboarding Slide
As you grow comfortable with doing the powerslide at slower speeds, gradually try upping the speed for even more of an adrenaline rush. If you are going for an even bigger spray, try powersliding on the whip as the boat turns around. Over time you will perfect your lean and get larger spray but remember only practice makes perfect and as you try more complex tricks the risk of harm also goes up, so safety gear is essential to make sure you have a good time!
When you are ready to move on to the next trick, we recommend the butter slide. This move comes in three flavors that are great for beginners trying to advance their wakeboarding skills: the frontside butter slide, backside butter slide and backside butter slide 180. These slides involve sliding the wakeboard sideways across the water and grinding the wake. Ready? Check out our a href ="/blog/post/how-to-do-a-butter-slide">beginner’s guide to the butterslide.