Three Things To Know Before Buying Waterskis

Have more fun on the water with these tips

Not all the fun of boating happens within the confines of the cockpit. There’s plenty of fun to be had in the wakes as well. In fact, for many boating enthusiasts and their kids, waterskiing is almost a rite of passage. Those first attempts are fondly — and funnily — remembered for years to come.

Ready to skim across the water? Here are three things to know before buying waterskis.

Combo Skis Offer The Best Bang For The Buck

O'Brien Celebrity Combo Waterskis
Greater surface area at the front of the ski makes it easier for riders to get up and on top of the water, and provides more stability at slower speeds.Courtesy Amazon

A good “combo” pair of water skis should be in every watersport lover’s arsenal. The two-ski combo makes it easy for beginners to get up for the first time and progress, the addition of a rear toe pocket on one of the skis allows a rider to ultimately ditch one of those skis and enjoy a single-ski, “slalom” ride, and adjustable bindings accommodate a wide range of foot sizes…and consequently, a wide range of riders.

Kids-Specific Combo Sets Ease The Learning Curve With Added Features

O'Brien Children All-Star Trainers
The best part about kids' trainers? All the beginner-specific features can be easily removed once the child has mastered skiing and is ready to get up without assistance.Courtesy Amazon

If you’re serious about teaching your kids to ski, invest in a “trainer” combo. Trainers dramatically shorten the learning curve by addressing the issues kids struggle with most. They offer a rigid stabilizer bar forward and rope tether aft to keep the tips of the skis from separating, key when a child is trying to prepare for a deepwater start, and attach the towrope to the stabilizer bar (leaving the child with the handle attached only to the skis) to eliminate that arm-wrenching tug as the boat accelerates.

Bigger Is Often Better

O'Brien Vortex Widebody Combo Water Skis
Bigger skis also support bigger riders, allowing more people to get in on the fun.Courtesy Amazon

Parabolic shapes and wide-bodied styles revolutionized waterskiing by giving skis more surface area, particularly at the front of the skis. That surface area eases riders atop the water during a deepwater start, and once atop the water, provides greater stability at slower, learning-friendly speeds.