Wakesurfing is a relatively new sport, although it has been around for many decades in one form or another. The original, long surfboards were towed behind family runabouts. Those early attempts to surf the boat's wake were quite primitive — nothing compared to what this sport has developed into today. Modern day wake surfing offers inland surfers a chance to shred a wave — even though they may be hundreds of miles from the ocean's coast and its swells.
Wakesurfing should never be done behind an inboard/outboard or outboard boat, as wakesurfing speeds are typically much slower than for wakeboarding, for example, and position the surfer dangerously close to the boat propeller. Wakesurfing should only be done with a direct drive tournament boat or the increasingly popular V drive boats. Surfing speeds can vary between 9 and 14 MPH depending on the boat manufacturer.
One can shape a boat's wake to create a large, lasting surfing wave, by re-positioning passengers or adjusting boat ballast. Adjustments should be made according to which of the surfer’s feet is forward i.e. "goofy" or regular.
Wakesurfing is a very social sport. The surfer rides just aft of the boat’s swim platform, so conversation with boat passengers is easy. Falls are usually soft and controlled – unlike wakeboarding which can peel your eyelids back and make your body feel like freshly-ground hamburger after a few good crashes. Even when the lake is at its roughest, boat drivers can still create a good surf wake.
The new generation wakesurfing boards include easy-to-ride long boards measuring between 4'9" and six feet, perfect for beginners or heavier riders who need to carry more speed on smaller wakes. Shorter boards offer better maneuverability for spins or quick slashing turns. The shorter freestyle boards are denser (i.e. thick) and measure around 4'2" to 4'6". The number of fins and varieties of bottom configurations depend on the one's riding style and the manufacturers' designs.
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