UK Closeout Wakeboards UK
Wakeboarding is an established watersport that first gained popularity back in the mid 1990s. Wakeboarding is a combination of waterskiing and snowboarding and it blends key elements of these 2 sports to produce a great and highly exhilarating way to have some serious fun on the water.
Compared to other tow-based sports such as waterskiing, wakeboarding is relatively easy to learn and most beginners are able to get up on their board after a few runs in the presence of a good Instructor. With a bit of practise, many can do their first modest hops across the wake within just a few hours.
Unlike wind-based sports such as kitesurfing that require little more than some appropriate equipment and a windy day, wakeboarding requires a bit more organisation and logistics such as a boat, a driver, and a spotter (someone sat in the boat facing backwards telling the driver of any hand signals you make or if you have fallen). Wakeboarding therefore requires a bit more ongoing cost than most wind-based watersports, the average rate for a 15 minute tow being between £20 and £30. However, dont let this put you off as in our experience 15 minutes is usually plenty (wakeboarding gives you a pretty good workout) and a 15 minute session will usually leave you exhausted and grinning from ear to ear.
Cable parks are extremely popular these days and enable multiple wakeboarders to safely use the same stretch of water, usually a lake, with no upfront investment in boats etc. Large cable parks use a looped system that takes the rider in a rectangular route around the lake. This route will be dotted with various rails, kickers and sliders so that the more experienced riders can do tricks, but it when you are learning it is easy to follow the route round and avoid the obstacles. As well as looped cable systems, another popular format is the point-to-point cable system, also known as a System 2. This is a straight cable running from one gantry to another with obstacles littered along its route.
An important point to note is that a looped cable system runs continually at one speed without any human intervention so if (when) you fall the handle will not wait for you and you will need to swim to the side and walk back to the start again. A system 2 is different in that an operator is "driving" the rope for you and can adjust the the speed according to your skill level and (most importantly) will bring it back to you if you fall.
A Cable Park Wakeboard is designed to withstand the abuse of hitting all of the various types of obstacles found at cable parks, such as kickers and sliders. As a general rule, a cable wakeboard will have at least 1 set of removeable fins plus possibly 4 moulded fins, although some only have 2 moulded fins and some actually have no fins at all and a base that is completely flat and profileless. Cable Wakeboards generally have what's known as a grind base (a sacrificial tough plastic coating designed to protect the fragile skin of the board from impacts and abrasion) and reinforced edges to minimise side-on impact damage from striking obstacles. A cable wakeboard often has wider tips and a flexible core to assist with pressing tricks and to cushion the rider from heavy impacts and hard landings. Basically, a cable wakeboard is a heavily reinforced and more flexible type of wakeboard that is designed to take as much abuse as possible while also helping to protect the rider.
A Boat Wakeboard needs none of the impact protection features of a cable board and is designed to perform a different variety of tricks. Boat boards often have profiling on the base and more emphasis on fins as these are not vulnerable to damage when being towed behind a boat. Boat Wakeboards also have a stiffer core and more features to help them perform better on the smoother, softer wake profile created by a boat rather than the rock hard obstacles found at cable parks.
A Hybrid Wakeboard combines many of the features of both cable and boat boards to create a board that is reasonably at home in either environment. However, Hybrid Wakeboards by definition will always be something of a compromise. If you only ever ride at cable parks then get a cable board and if you always ride behind a boat then get a boat board. If you regularly do both then a hybrid board is worthy of consideration, the only alternative being to buy 2 seperate boards, one for each environment.
Within these 3 categories of wakeboard you then have boards designed for beginners, intermediates and advanced riders. Beginner boards are usually the slowest and most forgiving to ride whereas advanced board are normally the fastest and most responsive to ride. When deciding which skill category you fall into, be brutally honest with yourself.
Wakeboards are measured in centimeters and vary in length from around 120cm to 150cm and in width from approx 38cm to 44cm. These dimensions are important when choosing your wakeboard as being on the wrong size board can hinder your progress and potentially spoil your fun.
Deciding which sized wakeboard you need is surprisingly easy. It's all about simple physics and basic surface area to volume. In short, the heavier you are the more volume (board size) you need in order to stay on top of the water. If your board is too small for your weight then you will need to be towed at excessive speed in order to keep you on the plane, which is not desirable while you are learning. If your board is too big then it will feel like you are strapped to a door and it will also hinder your progress. Here is a simple beginner's guide to help you calculate your optimal board size.
Wakeboard Sizing Chart
130cm or less
100lbs - 150lbs
130cm - 134cm
134cm - 139cm
139cm - 144cm
This guide is intended to help beginners choose the board that will be easiest to handle and which will help them progess. Seasoned riders often like to ride boards that are outside of these guidelines, which is purely down to personal preference and riding style. Until you are confident and experienced, we recommend sticking to the guidelines.
For more information on wakeboard designs and features (rocker, fins etc) please check out out guide to buying a wakeboard.
Founded in 1995, with roots going back to the sports first days, Liquid Force has become the leader in the wakeboard industry. Founders Tony Finn and Jimmy Redmon were two pioneers in the sport of Wakeboarding and are credited with the development of the Skurfer, which is widely regarded as the product that put wakeboarding on the map. Having twice won the WSIA Manufacturer of the Year award, Liquid Force is dedicated to relentless innovation, progressive design, maximum functionality and unparalleled quality.
For over 50 years OBrien have been creating great watersports products aimed at the recreational and family market and their wakeboards offer excellent quality and performance at surprisingly keen prices. O'Brien work hard to design, test, manufacture, and improve each and every product they make and they believe in pushing the sport forward, providing the newest technology and the latest manufacturing techniques to build advanced watersports products that stand the test of time.
Ronix Wakeboards are one of the top brands in the wakeboarding industry. Their boards are crammed with technology and brimming with style and their team includes many of today's top riders, helping them achieve significant and ongoing victory at podiums around the world. Ronix make premium equipment for discerning customers so if you want the best then Ronix could be the brand for you.
Hyperlite Wakeboards are one of the pioneers of the wakeboard movement. You only need to look at the history of wakeboarding to see that the longest-standing brand in the sport is in fact Hyperlite. Hyperlite have continued to innovate, being the first to the market with molded in fins, lace-up bindings, PVC core wakeboard, ABS sidewalls, and wood core flex boards to name but a few. Hyperlite has always been, and continues to be, a true pioneer in the wake industry. As the sport of wakeboarding grows, Hyperlite grows with it, evolving their brand and continually creating revolutionary products.
Jobe are one of the largest and most successful of all recreational water sports brands. Their mission is to simply get you on the water and they are continually evolving and developing new products to make life on the water easier and more fun. Jobe produce a great range of recreational wakeboards and packages that are aimed primarily at the family user. Their wakeboards offer surprisingly good designed and visual appeal all at very low prices. Perfect for beginners and family applications, a Jobe wakeboard will get you out on the water and help you on your fist steps to success in no time.
CWB Board Co has changed a lot over the years. They have spent the past few years reinventing themselves and have since created some of the greatest and most innovative wakeboards and wakeboarding equipment to date. There is no denying their history either. They introduced Hinge Tech Wake Bindings a few years ago, an innovation that changed the industry and wake boots forever. On the board side they created the first board built with a bamboo core, giving unmatched snap and durability as well as being environmentally friendly. In short, CWB's desire is to blow customer's minds with their gear and to create the greatest range of wake products ever seen.