Wakeboard Sizing Chart
At first glance all wakeboards seem to differ only in size. If you start looking into it more, you'll notice board descriptions start to talk about "rocker" "fins" and other things like that. Not sure what a rocker is, what type of wakeboard you should choose, or even how to wakeboard? Well then don't stop reading, because this guide is about to give you a rundown of the wakeboard basics that will let you keep up with the pros!
|Rider Weight (lbs)||Wakeboard Length (cm)|
To start things off, we'll talk about length. Length is arguably the most important factor when deciding what board to buy; get something too small for you and you won't be able to get up on the water! Length is also the easiest thing to decide because it only relies on one factor: weight. The weight of the person using the board is all that matters - height does not make a difference. A longer board is easier to learn on, and it's softer on landings. A shorter board is easier to maneuver in the air for tricks; however it is more unforgiving when it comes to landings. It's important to factor in who is going to be riding the board. Most boards get used by more than one person, so consider the heaviest rider and buy according to them. Beginners should also go with a larger board, as it allows for more control.
As mentioned earlier, rocker also needs to be considered when buying a wakeboard. Wakeboard rocker is the curve that the board has. A completely flat board would result in a few too many face-plants, so boards are made curved. Different curves will yield different performances. The main two types of rocker are continuous and 3-stage.
Continuous (progressive): The continuous rocker offers a smooth, predictable ride, with flowing transition into turns. The shape allows for more speed and consistent jumps off the wake.
3-Stage: The three stage rocker adds a break in the curve for aggressive riding and a flatter center curve for speed and rail control. This gives the rider more "pop" off the wake - however - more rocker is not always better. With a more dramatic rocker a wakeboard has a looser or slippery feel on the water surface. In addition, the shape causes the board to plow through the water rather than cutting through it; making the board slower. In addition, the five-stage rocker profile gives the rider an extra straight-up kick off the wake without the braking effect of a traditional abrupt three-stage bottom curve.
Hybrid: As the name might suggest, a hybrid rocker is somewhere in between continuous and 3-stage. The hybrid rocker blends two curves together for improved performance. Each brand and board offers a different combination for a different riding experience.
In the end, there is no objectively correct rocker like there is length. Each rocker is a personal choice and it depends on the rider's preference and ability. Most beginners would go with a continuous rocker based on its predictability and control.
Wakeboard Base Shapes
Concaves: Concaves are like 1/4 circle indents on the bottom of your wakeboard that create lift and act as suction-reducing accelerators so the board will sit higher in the water. The more concaves, the higher the board will sit in the water. Where the concaves are located will determine where the board rides as well.
Channels: Channels are like longs fins on the bottom of the board that extend its entire length. These will help direct water underneath the board. They help with stability and direction control. Deeper channels will mean more stability.
V-Shape Spines: Spines are v-shaped features that help soften landings and allow you to roll from edge to edge easier. They're often added to boards with 3-stage rockers to soften landings.
Featureless: A featureless wakeboard will not have any pre-molded fins or channels. This will have the board's overall shape and its rocker define the ride.
Fins: Fins are the little pieces sticking out perpendicular to the bottom of the board. They serve the same purpose of a vertical stabilizer on an airplane. This stabilizer, also referred to as the fin of the plane, stabilizes the plane and lets it fly straight. This is the same case for wakeboards. Longer deeper fins are great for beginners because they allow for a more stable ride. Deeper fins make it tougher to break the board free from the water to do tricks. Some fins are removable, and some or molded into the actual shape of the board. Many boards feature both molded in fins as well as removable fins.