What can I expect to happen on the Learn to Wakeboard Session
For all of those who have had the experience of booking a lesson, whether it be at a sports club, gym or a music lesson there is a certain amount of trepidation as that first class looms closer. Will I like the class? Will I get on with the people on the course? Will I be able to do what is asked of me by the coach or teacher?
The following article will help to alleviate a few of these worries and help you make the most of your first wakeboarding lesson in Brighton at Lagoon Watersports
The first step is arriving at the Hove Lagoon where the wakepark is based and signing in to the course. This is all done at the main reception on the east side of the building. If you are unsure of where to go ask any of the staff in the Lagoon Watersports uniform and they will happily direct you to the sign in point. At reception you will be asked to fill in a basic medical questionnaire and provide an emergency contact number.If you arrive with time to spare you can chill out in our cafe which overlooks the wake park and enjoy a drink and a snack while watching other people having a go.
Meeting the instructor:
Approximately ten minutes before your session is due to start you will meet your instructor. They will tell you a bit about the centre and may ask you a few questions about your water experience, is this your first time trying wake boarding, have you tried any board sports before, is this your first time at the lagoon, etc etc.
Your instructor will take you to our wetsuit room and size up a wetsuit for you. Make sure you are happy with how to put it on (essentially a onesie with a zip up the back) and then show you to the changing and locker rooms. Once you are changed it is on with the lesson
Introduction to the kit:
There will be a short introduction to the kit. You will have a wakeboard with bindings attached, an impact jacket and a helmet.
The land drill:
After you have been shown the wakeboard equipment the instructor will run through a short land lesson covering some aspects of safety ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0EZ4bl1IZ4) but more importantly, how to get the board on, and how to get going on the wakeboard once in the water.
Taking the plunge:
You are now fully prepared to get in the water. The first step is called a deep water start. This is the technique used to utilise the pull from the cable while holding onto the handle to lift you up and over the wakeboard and cruising from one end of the cable tow to the other.
Taking the plunge on the Learn to Wakeboard Session
The first attempt
Classically the first few attempts will end in a bit of swimming. But before long you will be relaxed and will have realised that the shallower waters and the controlled environment of the lagoon are a great way to get to grips with the sport. Now you will start really understanding the process and before long you’ll be up on top of the water making your way to the far end of the wakeboard cable.
You have now had your first ride on a wakeboard and you are at the opposite end of the cable to the instructor. They will give you a big thumbs up and you will need to turn yourself around in the water ready to head back towards your starting dock. Remember the instructor has 100% control of the cable so everything will be done at the speed that best suits you.
Sharing the experience
Our learn to wakeboard lessons are run at a ration of 2:1. So after 5 – 10 minutes in the water you will swap over with the other student and you can rest and watch them have a go. This ratio is great from a learning point of view as you are never out of the water for more than ten minutes and you can learn so much by witnessing the efforts of your fellow student. It is also great if you are down from London for the weekend and wanted to try wakeboarding with a friend.
Cracking the basics:
During your lesson the aim is to get you up on top of the water and happily wakeboarding the length of the cable park. If you are doing well the instructor will start coaching you through ‘cornering’. This is the way to turn around at either end of the cable without sinking back into the water.
Session debrief and progression
After your hour session, you will be feeling exhilarated and keen for more. Your instructor will now talk to you a bit about the route into the sport and where to progress to next. This will most likely be the Wakeboard Improvers Lesson which will focus on getting you cornering, and may even look at a couple of other techniques like a jump start, ollie or even riding switch.
Hot showers and coffee
Your wakeboarding experience at Hove Lagoon Cable Park does not finish when you come off the water. It is now time to settle in at the cafe and watch the local riders showing off some skills, you may even get to see one of our local UK wakeboard pros like Matt Crowhurst, CK Koester or even Nick Davies (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMr8ye7Ca4w) doing a demo at the cable park.