Another factor to consider when purchasing your first wakeboard is the edge. Sharp edges (or rails, as they are frequently referred as) indicate increased acceleration and speed. Rounded edges are more forgiving (you won't snag an edge as quickly) and work well for surface techniques. Variable edges are a combination of the two. They're generally more popular with advanced riders who want something that gives them more control.
If you're just starting out, look for a board that is between 10 and 12 inches wide. Wider boards are easier to handle and have more volume, which makes them better for longer rides. They aren't as maneuverable as smaller boards, however.
As you improve your riding skills, you can progress to a board that is 13 to 16 inches wide. These larger sizes are still easy to ride but offer more stability in the water. If you plan to do lots of flips and other tricks, go with a board that is at least 17 inches wide.
The type of wood used to build the wakeboard affects its performance and price tag. A wood that is heavy on the heartwood and less on the sapwood will be stronger than one that is just the opposite. Also, wood that has been treated with chemicals to prevent insects or fungus from attacking it will also be stronger and more durable. Finally, wood that has been stained or painted will usually be more colorful too! All these factors affect how much it will cost to buy a wakeboard.
Many wakeboards feature molded-in fins on the exterior and replaceable fins in the middle. Sliders with molded-in fins are more durable. Removable fins allow you to customize the feel of your ride.
Wakeboarding is riding waves and performing tricks off of them. The board itself is what determines how high you can go, as well as how far you can travel before needing a breather. There are two main types of boards: wave and slider. Wave boards are wider and have larger bumps than sliders. You can also get boards that are half wave/half slider, which are used by beginners who want to try out wakeboarding but don't want to invest too much money.
Wakeboards were originally designed for surfers looking for a new way to experience the sport. They took advantage of the fact that waves are strong enough to support a person standing up, but not so strong that they cannot be ridden.
Finnesse is a Swedish word that means "to sail through the water" or "to float". It was probably first used to describe the way ice skaters move through the water. But since then it has been adopted to describe the action of surfing waves. A fin is any solid object that projects from the bottom surface of a boat to increase its stability and drag when moving through the water.
Without the fins, the wakeboard is far more likely to violently and freely rotate on the water's surface, making riding the board, much alone doing tricks, exceedingly impossible. While both serve the same basic goal, a broad fin is more appropriate for beginning and intermediate wakeboarders. It provides better control of the board and makes flipping and sliding more effective means of maneuvering.
With the fins, the wakeboard is less likely to rotate on its axis, which makes riding easier but also less responsive to your input. However, these advantages can be lost if you make tricks too difficult or execute them at high speeds, where there isn't enough time for the board to react accordingly.
The choice between surfing with fins or not depends on your skill level and preference for control. If you're just getting started, we recommend using the fins to keep the board under control while you learn how to ride it properly. As you gain experience, you'll be able to ditch the fins and use them only when necessary.