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5 Best Water Sports That Are Easy to Learn

Posted on October 17, 2018 by Scott Huntington

When the weather is warm, there is no better place to be than out on the water — but sitting in a boat or lounging in a tube can get boring after a while. Learning a new water sport might seem like a daunting task, but there are plenty of options that are fun and easy to learn. Here are five examples that might help you find your next favorite summertime water activity.

Image: wiki commons

Image: wiki commons

1. Paddle Boarding

If surfing looks like fun but you feel like you might not have the balance or the lower body strength to brave those waves, paddle boarding can be a great alternative. This water sport involves standing on a large flat board that’s similar to a surfboard but designed to be more stable. You navigate the paddle board with a large paddle, similar to the one you would use on a canoe but with a longer handle.

It doesn’t take a lot of balance or skill to use a paddleboard. In fact, some places even hold yoga classes on them, if that gives you an idea of how stable these wide boards can be on the water.

2. Canoeing/Kayaking

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If speed isn’t your thing but you still want to get out and start exploring your local waterways, getting into a canoe or a kayak can be a great way to do that. These two watercraft are similar in that they are small, self-powered boats designed to fit one or two people, but that’s where the similarities end.

Canoes are open, while kayaks have enclosed seats you need to slip your legs into. Canoes flood if they capsize, while a skilled kayak pilot can flip themselves back upright without ever getting out of the kayak.

Both of these boats take some upper body strength to maneuver, but they can be a great way to get out and enjoy the water.

3. Wakeboarding

Now we’re getting into the really fun stuff. Wakeboarding is done on a board your feet are secured to — similar to a snowboard — while you’re hanging on to a rope tied to the back of a boat. The goal of wakeboarding, as its name suggests, is to ride the wake of the boat.

Skilled wakeboarders can use the wake of the boat that is towing them to launch themselves into the air and do some fantastic tricks, but you might want to focus on staying upright first. It’s not a hard skill to learn, though it does take some practice.

4. Water Skiing

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This is an iconic water sport that involves strapping two wooden skis to your feet and skimming across the surface of the water at high speeds. It takes a bit more balance than wakeboarding — as well as some lower body strength to control the skis — but it can be easy to learn and an absolute blast.

For beginners, it’s recommended that you start with your skis tied together, which keeps your feet from going in two different directions when you start moving and saves you from some potentially painful splits.

5. Jet Skiing

If you want to get some serious speed without worrying about faceplanting into the water, hopping on a jet ski might be the best water sport for you. When you rent a jet ski for the first time, you’ll get a crash course on how to use it safely. Once you have the basics down, though, it can be a fantastic way to speed around on the water. You might even be able to do some tricks if you catch a wave or the wake from a passing boat.

Choosing the Right Boat

If you find a water sport you really love, you might balk at spending the money to pick up the equipment yourself, but it can save you a lot of money on rentals in the long run. Regardless, it’s important to choose the right boat for the sport you’re participating in. Ski boats are designed to reach optimum speed quickly to get you out of the water and onto your skis, while wakeboard boats are designed to generate more wake for the boarders to enjoy.

Once you’ve got a boat and have chosen your sport, all you need to do is find yourself a pilot and get out on the water!

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