When it comes to hauling tubers, I have a personal philosophy: The most fun is reserved for the driver and people watching from the boat. Those daring to tube get to hang on for dear life!
This doesn’t mean I drive like a madman. In fact, tube manufacturers claim you should not exceed 15 to 20 miles per hour. I actually want the riders on the tube to have fun too. Getting the most out of tubing has nothing to do with how fast you go and everything to do with how you work the wheel.
Illustrated below are a few of my favorite driving maneuvers to consider on your next outing. But first, some advice for maximizing a tuber’s fun while remaining safe.
Think Safety First
When tandem tubing, riders are safer lying next to each other on their stomachs than sitting upright. With a lower center of gravity, the riders will be better balanced and less likely to knock into each other or fall off as the tube bounces or whips through the wake.
To be extra safe, invest in a couple of wakeboarding helmets from Liquid Force (liquidforce.com) or Pro-Tec (pro-tec.net).
Trim the Tube
Tandem riders can work together to “trim” the tube like sailors hiking out on a dinghy. Pulling back on the handles will give the tube lift up front, helping to catch air.
If the tube feels like it might flip on its side, the tuber on the inside should try to lean against the tube to try to correct. Both tubers can help the tube escape a wake by leaning in that direction.
Sometimes, though, the best you can do is hold on, and laugh.