Good Safety Practices in Water Sports: Habits for Keeping Yourself Safe

Good Safety Practices in Water Sports

Participating in water sports is among the most enjoyable activities of boating. It doesn’t matter if you want the option of taking a waterski, riding an inflatable tube, wakeboard, or wakesurf; these sports are an excellent opportunity to spend time with your friends and family and get the most enjoyment from your investment in a boat. As with any activity, safety must always be the first priority.

Here’re some safety tips and recommendations to make sure you enjoy any water sport that can be towable.


Tips for a Fun & Safe Water Sports Experience

  • Whatever towable option you pick, make sure you wear the certified life jacket by the Coast Guard. A Type III vest-style life jacket is the ideal option. Its body-hugging style doesn’t hinder the movement of your body, and the wide-body coverage provides a level of protection from impact should you suffer a serious fall.
  • Always have a designated spotter onboard the vehicle. A person whose main job is to watch the person riding or skiing and communicate their needs promptly to the driver.
  • The person who is the spotter should be aware of the significance of the most basic watersports hand signals. They can be used to indicate a thumbs up or down to signal the desire to move faster or slow down, a pat on the top of the head to signal to return back to docks, as well as hands raised with fingertips touching to ensure the rider is safe after an accident.


Driver-Specific Responsibilities

As a driver and driver, the safety of your passengers as well as the rider or skier is your obligation. Here are some things to consider:

  • In the underway, keep an appropriate distance of the beach, the other vessels that share the water, and all obstructions.
  • Concentrate on a safe route and the water ahead while letting the spotter know what’s happening in the background.
  • If you return to a skier who has fallen, be sure to keep the skier to the driver’s side so that they do not lose track of their position concerning the watercraft.
  • Don’t let a skier or rider dress up on the platform for swimming or slip into the pool or reboard without switching off your engine.


Wakesurfing Safety

Wakesurfing occurs close to the transom (aka the back part of the vessel). This requires a boat with the prop under the hull and riding in case they crash. Jet, inboards, and V-drive vessels are all suitable with models that feature sterndrives that have propellers mounted in the forward direction. However, traditional sterndrives and outboards put the propeller near towards the surfer and should not be utilized to surf. Boats designed for wakesurfing typically come with an exhaust system to prevent dangerous carbon monoxide from accumulating in the surfer’s most popular riding zone.

Here are a few security tips to be aware of when you’re wakesurfing or wakeboarding

  • Get the best wakeboard ropefor wakeboarding. Its shorter length places surfers in the perfect wake spot, and the smaller handle, or even a simple braided grip, reduces the possibility of being entangled in the event of a fall.
  • When you are maneuvering the board into the pocket of the wave, do not tie slacklines around your arm or hand.
  • While it’s not a security tip to follow, be aware of the wakes to the surrounding surroundings. In the surf, mode boats produce much larger than average wakes. If you’re riding close enough to shore or other boaters, these wakes could cause harm.
  • Always be considerate of fellow boaters and the property owners who own waterfront properties.
Good Safety Practices in Water Sports: Habits for Keeping Yourself Safe

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