What Do I Need to Water Ski?

Power Guide to Buying a GPS for a Boat
September 28, 2016
The Power Guide to Buying the Right Life Jacket
September 28, 2016

What Do I Need to Water Ski?

<p style=”text-align: justify;”>Waterskiing made its debut back in the 1920s, but it wasn’t until the 1970s that it gained widespread appeal. Today, both recreational and competitive waterskiing are popular in South Africa, and it’s easy to understand its attraction – it’s an exhilarating watersport, and with our warm climate, many recreational dams and long coastline, it’s an activity which is possible practically all year round. If you’re keen to dip your toes into this one, you’ll need to get kitted, first. Read on to find out just what waterski equipment you will need…</p>

<h2 style=”text-align: justify;”>A water ski boat</h2>
<p style=”text-align: justify;”>Waterskiing calls for a ski boat! Equipped with powerful inboard or outboard motors, ski boats provide good acceleration and make pulling a skier easy. Do note that the boat will need an annual certificate of fitness, issued through a <a href=”http://www.samsa.org.za/” target=”_blank”>SAMSA</a>–authorised agency. And you won’t necessarily have to spend a fortune on a new boat, as there is a huge selection of <a href=”https://natalpowerboats.co.za/product-category/pre-owned-boats/waterski/” target=”_blank”>pre-owned water-ski boats</a> in tip-top condition from reputable marine industry dealers. Besides a boat, you’ll need a certified skipper’s licence.</p>

<h2 style=”text-align: justify;”>Tow bar, ski ropes and ski handle</h2>
<p style=”text-align: justify;”>Ski boats usually have a fitted tow bar or wake tower around which the ski rope is securely attached. With its extended height, a wake tower is ideal for skiers that love to get airtime – basically, it helps more advanced waterskiers get more height when doing jumps and waterski tricks. Polypropylene ski ropes are best for towing as this material stretches, floats on water, and doesn’t tangle easily. The length of the ski rope should be roughly 20 meters and strong enough to handle an approximate weight of 350kg. You’ll also want a ski handle that’s designed specifically for skiing and these are usually short with a wide rubber-moulded grip.</p>

<h2>Water Skis</h2>
<p style=”text-align: justify;”>The type of water ski used depends on the level of a skier and the style of skiing. It may be worthwhile investing in a pair of combination skis which are slightly wider and can be used by beginners and more advanced skiers. There’s also the option of trick or slalom skis for the adventurous types who have plenty of ski hours under the belt. The slalom is a single ski with binding grips for both feet, the dominant foot in front of the other – whilst the trick ski is a thinner pair which may have a fin on the underside for fast gliding and easy manoeuvering. For younger waterskiers, opt for children’s skies – these are smaller, and are tied together at the back and at the front.</p>

<h2 style=”text-align: justify;”>Life jackets</h2>
<p style=”text-align: justify;”>Life jackets are crucial for any boat-based watersports. A level 50 is deemed suitable for waterskiing activities – keeping competent swimmers afloat. Ensure that you have enough life jackets for everyone on board, including the waterskier! Life jackets should fit properly and be SAMSA-approved – for more on life jackets, read our <a href=”https://natalpowerboats.co.za/the-power-guide-to-buying-the-right-life-jacket/” target=”_blank”>power guide to buying the right life jacket</a>.</p>

<h2 style=”text-align: justify;”>Essential boat safety equipment</h2>
<p style=”text-align: justify;”>Besides a red flag to signal other craft when someone is in the water, certain safety equipment should be carried on the boat in case of mishaps – fire extinguisher, a first aid kit, capsize rope, bailing bucket, suitable anchor, anchor rope, oars, and one litre of drinking water per person. Also, don’t forget sunscreen with a high SPF rating!</p>

<h2 style=”text-align: justify;”>Get your skis on…</h2>
<em>Natal Power Boats</em> has a selection of new and pre-owned water-ski boats as well as a range of water-ski accessories to suit your needs and budget. <a href=”https://natalpowerboats.co.za/contact/” target=”_blank”>Contact us</a> for more info…