After one of the best seasons I’ve had (I’ve had two seasons so not much competition really) the thought of a winter without getting a wakeboarding fix has my heart breaking a little. What will I do to fill the void, what can I do to keep my progress from coming to a halt or reversing? Inspired by Wakeboarding Magazines “5 Ways to Cope with the Wake Season Ending” I’ve compiled this list to hopefully help wakeboard addicts like myself to survive the few months of Scottish winter without riding. Here are just a few things you can do to tide you over until spring:
Take Advantage of The Snow
Occasionally in winter we get snow, it’s not unheard of. If you snowboard or ski already I’m sure you’ll be making use of any drops we get by heading up north and taking your wakeboard skills onto the snow. For any of you wakeboarders who don’t hit the slopes, get some lessons and try it out! It’s a great way to build up your board confidence and you’ll meet a lot of like-minded shredders to keep you company until your wakeboard pals reappear when the water warms up.
Practice Your Board Skills
Try out some other board sports that don’t retire over winter like surfing, kitesurfing, skateboarding and as I said already, snowboarding. These are great ways to keep your boarding skills and confidence up, especially with getting more relaxed on the board and getting that all important even weight in both feet. An additional bonus of doing this is that it opens up your wardrobe to some cool brands, you can start wearing t-shirts that read “skate or die” and feel justified in wearing it.
Work on Another Sport
Fancy a break from boards? Try something new! Mountain biking is my other sport passion and living in Scotland means I don’t need to give up the bike over the winter months, an ideal time to get some good training underway. Not got another sport to go to, get researching and have a look for another sport to keep you active over the colder days. Maybe BMX is for you, or if you’re a football fan get looking for a local indoor league.
Hit the Gym
Got some tricks you’ve been struggling with this season? Get to the gym and start working those important muscles that will help you get the hard stuff nailed. Get fitter and stronger over winter and see the difference when you’re back on the board in Spring, you’ll be able to ride longer, have more strength for the harder tricks and stick those landings with more confidence.
Have you been wanting to start trying inverts out on the water? Best place to start is your nearest trampoline park. Get the basics consistent on a trampoline and transfer those skills on to the water. Struggling not to twist on tantrums? Practice throwing your head straight back on your back flips on the trampoline or into a foam pit a few times and make it stick, no more twisting off the kicker or unintentional whirlys! A favourite spot for the coaches in Glasgow is Ryze. Get in touch with your local park beforehand as some parks will allow you to bring a handle to practice handle pass tricks.
Chase the Sun
If you’re fortunate enough to have a bit of cash to spare after summer and just can’t wait for Spring, get looking for some winter sun deals and find parks abroad, you might not even need a wetsuit! Not got the cash? Sell everything you own and book a flight to Dubai.
Make a Sick Edit
Put all those little videos you took throughout the season to use and make yourself a sick edit, find that song that gets you stoked, find a good video editing app and share your riding skills with the wakeboard community.
Write a Blog
You could do what I’m doing right now and get blogging. You don’t need to be a great writer and you can do it just for your own enjoyment/sanity. Get good at it and you could end up getting paid or get some freebies to review/test!
Take up Yoga
Yoga has endless benefits with little to no downsides to doing it, other than maybe the cost of classes. If you’re feeling a bit skint there are lots of free yoga apps you can download that will take you through routines and teach you the basic poses. Practice yoga for a few months and see the difference in your presses, grabs and overall strength and balance in your riding. Before you know it you’ll be grabbing canadian bacons with ease.
Eat Chocolate and Wait for Spring
Or you could take my friend Ali’s advice and just eat chocolate, stay inside and wait for Spring to appear. Your choice, no judgements.
P.S. Don’t forget to keep an eye out for riding deals at your local parks at the end of winter and start of summer when parks will be hiring new recruits, looking for riders to help them get their driving up to scratch, and trying to fill up the diaries when it’s that bit too cold for newbies.