RIDING THE WAVES

Summer is just around the corner, and while it’s nice to chill and have some relaxing time, there are some that want a deeper type of water…

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Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/arturodonate/2343027570

Natalie McLaren, Eyes on Owls Section Editor

Getting into Gear for the Sunny Days:

There are two types of fun in the sun: the first? Sun rays are radiating across your skin as you sunbathe in the 80 degree temperature. A sparkling pool in front of you begs to dip your toe in its bath-temperature waters; an iced glass of lemonade sitting in your hand, and voila! You are in HEAVEN. The second? You’re climbing to the top of a roller coaster track over 250 feet in the air. You feel the air getting thinner, and your blood starts to pump. You know that any second, the ground beneath you will zoom in far enough to where you can see a speck of dirt, but first, a very very VERY long drop. Which do you prefer? The predictable way to spend your summer? Or the spontaneous way to spend your summer? I don’t know about you, but I think we all need to be a little bit spontaneous. 😉

The Hidden Heaven:

I’m sure there are plenty of things you want to do this summer; maybe catch up with some friends safely once this heck of a pandemic passes us, or MAYBE it’s even going to an amusement park or theme park. Maybe a national park? Heck, maybe it’s all three types of parks! But sometimes when the heat gets you, it takes a second to cool down… do you know what I’m thinking? Yep, I’m sure you do. It’s time to talk about a hidden aspect of summer that could really take your fun to the next level; are you ready? It’s in the water.

Water Sports.

Excuse me? What did you just say? Water sports? Boring!

*Coughs loudly* Excuse me. Did you just say that water sports are boring? Maybe you don’t know what I’m talking about then. Because there are three main types of water sports that may intrigue you this summer as you climb to new heights (or waves ;)). Let’s dive into each.

  • Surfing

WITH SHARKS? No thank you. << Is this your thought? Not to fear, there is another way to catch dem waves without getting eaten alive or visiting the reality behind the movie Jaws. Have you ever thought about the possibility of surfing behind a boat?

Wait a second. SAY WHAT??? You can surf behind a boat??

Yep. Have I blown your mind yet? If you have a local lake close to you such as Lake Ray Hubbard, Lake Travis, Canyon Lake, the big marinas typically rent boats. Coming along with the boats are water sports tools. A few things you should know about surfing…

  • It’s for anyone. If you’re young, you can learn how to do it, and it’s even easy to get up.
  • It’s more slow paced, so the boat’s going pretty slow when you surf.
  • It’s easy on your body. Don’t worry about having a super sore body the next time you try to move. Surfing is an easy way to catch some waves while listening to music, or even talking to friends.

Although it takes a special type of boat to surf behind the wake, it’s just one of three epic activities you can do behind a boat. Want something a bit more thrilling? Follow me to this next sport.

  • Water Skiing

Woah woah woah. You mean to tell me that there is another type of skiing other than in snow?

YUP! And to be honest, I think this one is almost more fun. Contrary to popular belief, skiing in snow requires a lot more work than skiing on water. To learn, take a pair of skis, position them in the lake with front sides up in the air and parallel, and tell the boat to get moving. Once you feel the tug of the rope, you stand up on the skis, level yourself out, and fly away! A few notes about water-skiing before you try it…

  • It’s a little harder on your body. It’s definitely more of a sport or activity that requires you to be more fit, so be prepared to be tired after your first few runs.
  • It takes calm water to water-ski. When skiing, you’re working with a wake of a boat that semi-protects you from the rest of the water, but if the water is too rough, you won’t be able to control your skis, and you’ll fall on your face. 
  • Any speed boat that can pull you out of the water will do. It doesn’t have to be any sort of special surfing boat, although you can ski behind those two.

Once you master two skis, kick off one of them and attempt to slalom! Slalom skiing is done with one ski, where one foot is in the boot, and the other is in a slide right behind the first foot. Once you’re able to ski with one, you’ll never want to go back to two. But wait; there’s one more sport; do you want something that you can play around with even more? Just wait for it guys.

  • Wakeboarding

Wakeboarding you have probably heard of. It’s a sport where your feet are strapped into bindings on a board a few measly feet long, and the objective is to stand up, just like with water-skiing. There are different types of wakeboarding, including cable, and boat. Boat wakeboarding typically needs a more stable board that can handle the wake of a boat, and cable wakeboarding can be done at a local park, like Hydrous Wakeboarding. There’s a huge difference between skiing and wakeboarding, and that is the fact that your feet are strapped to the same board on wakeboarding, whereas with skis, you either have two or you slalom. A few things to note…

  • It’s very hard on your body. It takes a bit of everything to wakeboard, some arms, legs, abs, and quad strength. You might want to get fit before you attempt to wakeboard!
  • Make sure you have the right type of board. If you have the wrong type, it can be very hard to learn how to get up and stay up, which is the most exhilarating part of the experience.
  • You can do this on slightly rougher water, so you don’t need crystal clear water; however, if it’s too rough, you lose control of the board, and flat on your face you meet the water.
  • You can do tricks once you get good! Doing flips, jumps, and 180-turns are a plus of wakeboarding. You want something where you can show off? Wakeboarding is for you.

The Next Wave is Yours!

Sometimes relaxing in the sun is fun and all, but a little bit of thrill will keep us all young! If you’re looking to catch some big waves, don’t worry or fret; when the water gets calm, it’s your turn to ride the waves.