How to Kneeboard

Alicia Stott asked:

Summer time is one of the best times to play sports. Many people like to go to the lake or the beach and go out in the water to play around. One of the best things to do in the water is to kneeboard. For those of you who don't know kneeboarding is almost like wake boarding, but on your knees. You kneel on a board, across the water, while holding a rope that's connected to the boat. The object is to stay up and try and do any types of tricks you can. I have been doing knee boarding since I was probably 12 or 13 and I have become pretty good at it as well. On my dad's boat I'm known as the kneeboarding "teacher." Every time someone new comes on the boat they say, "We brought you a new student today." That's what I'm going to do today is give you some tips on how to kneeboard.

• The first thing you need to do is put on a life jacket. When it comes to going out in the water, safety always comes first. Make sure the life jacket fits you well and is tight enough that you can't slip out of it. Also, be aware of the signals. The signals are: a little faster, a little slower, it's wavy (meaning there are big waves coming, be prepared) and stop (cut it).

• Second, is to grab the rope you are using to pull you along and find somewhere on the boat to tie it to. Normally you will tie it to one of the hooks on the back of the boat or one in the middle if there is one. Stick the rope through the middle of the hook then latch it on so it goes over the top and bottom of the hook.

• Third, jump in the water and once you get in, dunk your board under water so it gets wet. You want your board to be wet from the water so it's easier to get up on. Once your board is wet you are going to lie on it. Don't put your whole body on the board; make it so that half your body is on the board and the have your legs dangling. Hold the rope so your elbows are on the board, like you're going to lift a weight and do a curl.

• Fourth, when the boat starts to move you're going to feel a big pull. When it starts to pull you, take the rope and pull it back towards you and use your elbows to slide your knees up into the knee pockets. Your elbows are what are going to get you up. Use your forearms and elbows and slide your knees in. If you are a little bit stronger you can hold the rope with one hand and use your other hand to hold the board.

• Fifth, once you're kneeling on the board the next thing to do is to strap yourself in. On the board there is a strap so your knees won't come out when you're up, but you slide out when you fall. Strap yourself in as tightly as you need to.

• Sixth, make sure you keep holding onto that rope. The rope at points will pull away from you and you will feel like it's going to fall. When that happens, take both hands and pull it back towards you. When you do this it will give you some slack.

• Seventh, remember at all times to lean back. You don't want to lean to far back because you will be off balance and fall. But you also don't want to lean to far forward or you will do a nose dive. You want to lean just a little back. When the waves come, make sure you really lean back.

Kneeboarding can be a lot of fun once you learn to get up. It sometimes takes a few tries, but you will get it. Never give up. I always say, once you get up for the first time, you will get up every time. Go out and have fun with it. Once you master getting up try doing spins or some tricks. It's a lot of fun when you have another person going with you because then you can try and push each other off, splash each other and just have laughs about it. Go out and try knee boarding!

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Where to Kneeboard: Lake vs River vs Ocean

Kneeboarding originally started in the ocean, but since its beginnings it has moved to lakes and rivers across the globe. All three choices have their flaws and virtues. Some are more dangerous than others, and some are safer than others. There is also the factor of temperature and the fact that sea salt can be good or bad, depending on the person.

Let’s start with a lake. A lake is probably the safest of the three. It’s enclosed, so there are no currents to take you far from the shore should you end up in the water. Another positive is that in case of a storm, you won’t have to get out of the lake urgently, as because it is lake, no dangers like big waves can happen. There is also no salt in a lake and therefore no need to worry about drying yourself and having to immediately take a shower so you can wash off all the salt that remained on your skin and especially in your hair. Also, you can find quite acceptable temperatures near the lake, because unlike the ocean, lakes aren’t only found around extremely warm temperatures. There is possibility of finding an ocean with cold temperatures, but it’s very hard.  Depending on your location, especially if it’s somewhere far from the ocean, then a lake is the next best thing, unless if you want to travel many hours and maybe even many days to get to the shore of ocean.

The next option is a river. A river is somewhere in between, regarding dangers. It is more dangerous regarding currents compared to the ocean. The difference between the two is that if river has a strong current, just staying near the shore won’t help, or it will not help too much, meaning you won’t be able to do any kneeboarding because you will be too close, even in the very shallow part of the river. If you add to all that a nasty storm as well, then the current’s strength will increase drastically.

Finally we have the ocean. The ocean has warmth, and most of the time it has waves that can help if it’s not stormy weather. It’s the natural place to do kneeboarding if you have the luck to have been born near to the sea. Obviously, thanks to the fact that it is the ocean, there will be no worries about winter kneeboarding, and most of the time, depending on what shore you are at, you will have 350 out of 365 days a year to have great temperatures, great waves and great weather.

So, whichever one you choose, remember - they all have their issues. In all cases be very careful, especially when the weather looks stormy and waves look like they can cover the city. Make sure that you are using the proper equipment for the place and weather conditions - and you should be all set. All in all, everything is an adventure when it comes to kneeboarding.