Choosing a Wakeboard - A Buyer's Guide
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Choosing a Wakeboard - A Buyer's Guide

Wakeboardin'. Let's Get Learned.
Wakeboardin'. Let's get learned.

Wakeboarding has been around for a while, and over the years we have been blessed with a bunch of options. Wakeboards for the boat, wakeboards for the cable park, and some that have come and gone. For the most part the current landscape of wakeboarding has been simplified to two categories. Boat boards and cable boards. these two classifications just tell you where the board is meant to be ridden.

  • Boat Boards - Wakeboards that are classified as boat boards are meant for just that: Riding behind a boat. These boards can have molded in fins, and usually a lot more base structure and channels. these give the board more traction while carving and help with the faster speeds. Boat boards are built for faster speeds and more pop off of the wake.
  • Cable Boards - Wakeboards that are classified as cable boards are meant to be ridden at a cable park. Cable boards have pretty flat or simple bases and removable fins to allow riders to hit features at a cable park. The removable fins also allow the rider to customize the feel, or the ability to replace them as they wear out. Typically cable boards use a softer flex to help press the board when on features.

"Can I just use one board for both cable and boat riding?"
-Not a bad question, but there are some downsides both ways. If you were to use a boat board at a cable park the life of the board would be dramatically shortened. The reason being, the base is made out of a less durable material, and if the fins are destroyed there is no way to replace them. On the other hand if you decide to use a cable board behind the boat, you will notice that you will not have as much pop off the wake. This is because of the softer flex patterns found in cable boards. If you wanted to choose one way or the other, we would recommend a cable board behind the boat, rather than the other way around.

Understanding Shapes
  • 3 Stage Rocker
    • 3 Stage rocker is built around the end goal of more pop off of the wake (height). They achieve this by having two very abrupt transition points in the construction. The downside to 3 stage rocker wakeboards would be that instead of cutting through the water they tend to plow. Resulting in a slower board. You will also have to rely more on the edge of the board for traction rather than using the fins.
3 Stage Rocker Wakeboard Profile
  • Continuous Rocker
    • Continuous Rocker features one continuous curve to the bottom of the board. The reason this shape is used is to carry speed while cutting through the wake. Of the 3 profiles, Continuous is the fastest. The other side of having a fast board is more distance. When you take off the wake, you will have predictable pop (height) and great distance.

Continuous Rocker Wakeboard Profile
  • Camber
    • Camber profiles in wakeboards are not as common but still offer something different than Continuous and 3 Stage Rocker profiles. Camber profile boards allow the rider to be a little more even when it comes to front/back foot weight. Typically on the other two profiles, you have to have more weight on your back foot. With the Camber profile you are able to get more weight to your front foot. Very different feel with great pop off the wake.
Camber Wakeboard Profiles
What to know about fins.
Fins on a wakeboard add traction to the wakeboard. This allows someone to carve without having to solely use the edge of the board. The number of fins can also dictate how much traction there is. Usually on beginner boards, you will find 3 fin setups. The two outside fins of the board being molded in and the center fin being removable. On intermediate and advanced level boards, you will usually have a 2 fin setup, with both fins ebing removable.
  • Note that cable boards usually have 2 or no fins at all and are always removable.
Wakeboard Sizing
Wakeboard sizing is going to depend on the exact board you are using but the biggest determining factor for board size would be rider weight. Heaver riders will require more surface are to keep them afloat, and smaller riders not a much. You can manipulate your boat speed a little in an instance wher someone may using a board that is not the recommended size.

Approx. Wakeboard Size
Rider Weight (lbs) Wakeboard length (cm)
<100 <130
90 - 150 130 - 134
130 - 180 135 - 139
170 - 250 140 - 144
200 - 275 >144
*These are rough numbers to get you in the ballpark of sizing. Always reference the manufacturer's size chart for specific sizing.

Time to Wakeboard!

Now that we have your board narrowed down, its time to ride! Grab your board and head out behind the boat or to your closest cable park. Or, if you have any further burning questions we were unable to answer, feel free to give us a call or stop in and chat. We are your wakeboard experts.


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