So you are getting the hang of wakeboarding and you are starting to jump the wake pretty consistently. After a few sessions you will notice that sometimes the wake looks big and crisp, perfect for big air and sometimes it is washed out rolling over itself. Your goal is to consistently get a great wake so it is always the same and you can focus on new tricks, bigger air, and having fun.
1). Line Length - Using the proper line length is a big part of getting the perfect wake. You want to be jumping the wake where it is crisp, before it turns to whitewash. Speed plays a big role in how far the wake stay crisp so monitor this along with line length. Bring in sections or take off sections until you are at the crisp/firm part of the wake.
2). Adjust Speed / Speed Control - The speed of the boat will make a big difference in the size and distance the wakes travel back. As you speed up, in general the wake starts to flatten, throw the wake back further away from the boat, and become narrower. This will greatly effect what kind of wake the wakeboarder is seeing. As mentioned about you need to set your speed and line length together. Usually when you lengthen the line you also need to add some speed. That is why when you hear some pros wakeboarding at 80,85, even 90ft they are also going 23-27mph. Having a consistent speed will greatly enhance the ride and make the wake very stable.
3). Trim Boat - Trim Tabs / Wake Plate - Whatever your boat might have to adjust how it sits in the water will greatly affect the wake. Usually it is best to decide on a speed and line length and then when the wakeboarder is out there, adjust the trimming on the boat to really make the wake shape crisp and clean.
4). Adjust Seating Arrangement - Moving People - The smaller and lighter your boat is, the larger role the actual people in the boat have in influencing the wake. Before you start your riding try to make an effort to get the people weight in the boat balanced, this is most important side to side. If you are out riding and notice that the one wake is really washing out while the other wake is pretty crisp, often times this mean the boat is improperly weighted. You will be surprised how much a difference it makes to more one person to the other side of the boat.
5). Add/Adjust Additional Ballast - Additional ballast to pro level wakeboard boats has become essential. They load their boats up with thousands of extra pounds get the huge wakes. Adding weight in general will make your boat sit lower in the water and therefore displace more water, which intern throws up a larger wake behind the boat. So adding general ballast should increase your wake size. Have additional ballast also gives you the flexibility move ballast around the boat to properly balance the weighting side to side and fore to aft to get the ultimate wake behind the boat.
These five tips should have your wake bigger and better than ever. Now you can start throwing those big tricks. Get out there and RIDE!
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