Wakeboarding is an exhilarating sport, but you’re going to need the best wakeboard for your own specific needs if you’re going to have a good time and get the most out of the sport possible. It is tough to choose a wakeboard if you are a beginner as knowing what the jargon is and what makes a good wakeboard can be tough. We have put together some wakeboard reviews to try and showcase the very best models for beginners, intermediates and experts alike.
Make no mistake, wakeboarding is tough, and getting used to staying upright and feeling comfortable on the board is the first step before you even think about tricks. You want to feel like you really are gliding along the water, and after buying your wakeboard you’ll quickly realise how you get comfortable with it, and how tough it would be to change wakeboards regularly. Much like a pool player gets used to his cues, you’ll likely get used to your wakeboard and its own specific features and characteristics. Making the correct choice right from the start puts you at a big advantage and can get you off on the right footing.
Things to Consider When Buying a Wakeboard:
Size. I would say this is the single biggest consideration if you plan to purchase a wakeboard. If you buy a wakeboard too small to support your weight, it will sink, and being able to do anything with it at all will be impossible. Buy one too big, it can weigh you down and make movement hard. The sizing of your wakeboard is crucial, and should be based on your own build including height and weight.
Style. There are a couple of different styles of wakeboarding. If you’ll be boarding with the same foot forward the whole time then something called a ‘single tip’ wakeboard will be perfect for you. Those who are into snowboarding or even skating might be more comfortable with a twin tip, which means the front feet are interchangeable and can allow for a bit more flexibility.
Reviews. Wakeboard reviews are crucial. Basically, you don’t want to buy something flimsy or shoddy and a look at the reviews here on thewatersporter.com or elsewhere on the internet (online retailers) gives you a good idea of how happy people are with their purchase and which brands are up to scratch. A little bit of reading before taking the plunge (no pun intended) can go a long way.
Continuous or Three Stage rockers. Basically, this is another term you’re likely to come across in your search, but continuous rockers are mainly for stability and will suit beginners down to the ground.
Other considerations come into play such as the shape of the board, which does vary from brand to brand and model to model, fins are also worth looking into but the main thing is to make sure they are well built, and the materials and build quality are vital, and vary as well as largely dictating the price.
You need to consider who you are buying the wakeboard for. Whether it will be used by a beginner, a child, someone who is big or someone who is petite, does it need to be used for jumping or tricks? There is no one individual best wakeboard, this is a ‘horses for courses’ situation, and what is best for one may not be for another.
Now, time to look at some individual models and provide some info on the features of specific wakeboards! The good news is there are some amazing products on the market right now making shopping for one anything but a chore.
Hydroslide Black Widow Wakeboard
The Hydroslide Black Widow is an excellent wakeboard, designed for adults and relatively large at 56 inches. The lace up bindings are designed in order to keep you firmly in place. It has both front and rear fins which come with the product but require you to attach when you receive it. Most reviews of the Black Widow have talked about it as being not only a smooth and sturdy ride but as being excellently manufactured and likely to last years if kept in the right way. A quick browse at the Amazon reviews will help you to make your choice, but this is actually one of the cheaper models on the market and certainly doesn’t cost as much as some of the high end boards. The value for money combined with the amazingly smooth ride make this a good choice for beginners.
Body Glove Junior Wakeboard
Body glove are one of the best wakeboarding brands, with a couple of products in the market we wanted to take a look at their model for Juniors. It has secure, easy to adjust lace up bindings and performs extremely well. It isn’t necessarily designed for tricks and doing massive jumps but it is a great way to start learning and take to the water for the first times. It is wonderful for beginners and the 125lb limit makes it great for kids or small teens and adults. The performance of this wakeboard was hard to fault, with an exceptionally simple setup and use.
Hyperlite Wakeboard Machete Review
Now into a bit more of a ‘pro’ model, and one that deserves its place on the list of ‘best’ products in the field. It has an amazing record of being exceptionally well reviewed by those taking to the water. The core of the Hyperlite wakeboard is made out of a material called Bio2, which has been made by Dow chemicals, designed to be lightweight and flexible. This is the right weight for those who want to jump, feel the air and experience the full wakeboarding experience. The four fins are removable and provide even more flexibility. The three stage rocker also make this great for moving on the water. For beginners this may prove a bit of a challenge, but if you want a model that can perform with the most movement and a professional, lightweight feel, this may well be the one for you. Hyperlite are a brand name who make some excellent models of wakeboard and their bindings are also among the best, one set of which are included within this package. The bindings which are attached fit multiple sizes so you should be able to wear them no matter what your shoe size. This is also available in a couple of two different sizes, which one you buy will depend on your own size and build.
Full Throttle Aqua Extreme Wakeboard Kit
Another one of the top rated wakeboards we’ve found. The Full Throttle Aqua Extreme has a lot of exceptional reviews out there and most consumers seem to only have great things to say about it, and with good reason. This is the wakeboard for larger people to use. The guidelines are 155lb and up in terms of weight, meaning it is one of the biggest of its type. It doesn’t need to be bought just for the pure reason it is ‘big’ though, and this is a wonderful piece of kit.
Stability is a big plus point here, and though this isn’t what everyone wants, it is certainly good both for beginners and those of a larger build (even normal sized adults will often weigh above 155lbs). One review we found has talked about using this in spite of only being 135 lbs, so it can potentially be used by smaller folk too.
The reinforced fin holder means this is a strongly built and sturdy wakeboard. This sturdiness doesn’t mean that the Full Throttle Aqua Extreme Wakeboard is super heavy though and a very intelligent feather core material means that it does the best it can to stay lightweight in and of itself.
The branding may not be the top thing we’re judging boards on, but we do particularly like the way these products look, with an awesome, surfboard style painted design and the amazing Full Throttle logo on both the board and the bindings.
Wakeboarding is a sport which has quite a few different accessories. There are a lot of wakeboards out there, and they tend to each offer something different. There are accessories to purchase also! We’ve talked already about the bindings, and most of the products mentioned come with these included, however it is great to have the option to replace them with something to fit your feet better or provide more comfort. Of course, the rope is another huge part of wakeboarding, and you can spend some time looking for the best rope to put on your wakeboarding boat, they need to be comfortable on your hands as well as flexible and easy to attach.
Life jackets or life vests are an essential product, I cannot stress enough how important this is and how nobody should take to the water without wearing the appropriate safety gear. Finding a life vest for wakeboarding is relatively simple, safety should be the top priority, but they should also allow room for movement and not make you feel too much like a michelin man.
Some people also choose to wear helmets, which is definitely advisable if you’re going at pace on the water and certainly if you’re on a lake for instance where there may be other hazards.
As mentioned at the start, the right wakeboard for you depends on your own ability with a board, your build, age and more. The above models and brands are some of the most exceptional products available. Water sports are exhilarating and wakeboarding is a sport which has hugely grown in popularity. The products aren’t cheap, and once you’ve decided on a brand and got used to it then its hard to change, so making the correct choice by using reviews, and spending a little time looking beforehand can pay off big time. If you’re going to take the time and effort to learn to wakeboard and are looking to invest in a board, the products reviewed above all come with our recommendation depending on your needs.