Monthly Archives: August 2014

Darin Shapiro

10 Wakeboarding and boating tips you may have never heard of with Wakeboarding World Champion Darin Shapiro

Darin Shapiro wakeboarding

Darin Shapiro wakeboarding “Last Light”
Pic: Meddock

1. Always pick up a fallen rider on the drivers side of the boat so that you can have a constant visual of the rider.

2. If your rope often tangles or wont wind up easily try dragging the rope backwards with the handle end in the boat while driving at riding speed for 2 minutes, this should unwind it.

3. When someone is getting into or out of the boat lower the stereo so that you can easily hear what is going on at the back of the boat. I have heard of a terrible accident happening because the driver couldn’t hear what the rider was saying over the stereo.

4. Shut the engine off whenever a rider is getting into or out of the water.

5. Make sure riders are wearing a decent life vest, especially kids. Many jackets these days are comfortable and stretchy but you need to make sure they float you well and won’t get pulled if you take a good crash. I recommend buckles and zippers, not pull tight stretchy bands that some manufacturers use to tighten vests.

6. Girls should wear two layers over their bottoms for protection when wakeboarding. Boardshorts over bikini bottoms works well or you could always go with bikini bottoms over board shorts if that does it for you.

7. Using helmets for really little kids usually under 10 is a great idea. Small kids are super flexible so the board can hit them in the back of the head if they take a hard fall, plus the board length to height ratio is greater with little ones making it easier for their head to come into contact with the board.

8. When taking your wakeboard boat out of the water the ideal depth for your trailer is putting the wheelwell steps just an inch under the water. This will insure your boat rests perfectly evenly and wont be shifted to one side of the trailer.

9. No power turns if you want to keep your line calm.  A power turn is when you turn around and do a big high speed circle to get back to your rider, it wrecks the lake and wastes gas. When someone falls just slowly pull off of the throttle, turn around in gear and idle back to the rider. Approach a rider slowly and take the wind into consideration as well.

10. Be a great riding partner or guest. Bring gas even if the boat owner says we’re good.”  Help prepare or put away the boat and wipe that bad boy down as boats are a lot of work and people take pride in their whips.