Cable wakeboarding is the world’s fastest growing watersport, and with Foxlake Dunbar just down the road from us here in Edinburgh, we’ve had the perfect opportunity to join in!
Back in the summer holidays, we were invited on a Press Trip to see everything that Foxlake Dunbar had to offer – it’s overwater assault course, the aerial ziptrail and the epic Ringo rides – but Katie (then aged 6) didn’t want to stop there so we soon returned for an initial ‘Learn2wake’ session.
After an initial dry land lesson and safety briefing, Katie was soon in the water for the first of her two 15 minute sets in the water. Initially, I could see that she was finding it difficult as she glanced back to dry land – but with some encouragement from her instructor she was soon shouting back “I’m doing it!!”
After a 15 minute break – wrapped up warm in a wetsuit coat – you could easily understand why a break was advised. Katie had the opportunity to watch someone a bit more experienced, and to process all the different things she had been told. Her progress was much quicker in the second set and she was soon up and jetting along for progressively longer each time.
I’m pretty sure Katie had imagined she’d be launching off jumps within her first session – but actually was BEYOND excited that she was up and standing. Each time she fell she’d have to swim back and get back in the right position which just looked like the toughest thing for someone so small. But actually, she could totally manage it and just kept getting back up for another try. It was a huge confidence boost for her and it was really cool to watch too!
She returned to dry land clearly tired but grinning from ear to ear. And once again, her first question was “When can I come back?!”
Thankfully, Foxlake offer an ‘Boarding Pass’ which allows 6 introductory child sessions for £72. So for Katie it seemed like a sensible option as a birthday present! She’s subsequently completed another two sessions and will be back pretty much weekly before the end of season!
Here’s Katie’s Guide to Wakeboarding for kids:
When you’re putting your wetsuit on – put your legs in first, then pull and jump at the same time. Then when it’s high put your arms in. Then you need someone to zip you up!
When you’re wake boarding listen carefully to your instructor so you know what you’re doing. Sometimes it’s not easy to hear if you’re far away – so you really need to concentrate.
When you get going keep your arms straight – this helps you balance.
And bend your knees – that means you don’t fall!
When you’re waiting between lessons, put a jacket on so you don’t get cold or you can just stay in the water. My feet get cold when I get out so I just stay in but sometime’s Mummy gets me hot chocolate!
My tip as a parent? Get a coffee from the Boardside Cafe and just chill!