USA Water Ski & Wake Sports

Kneeboarding - 10 Tips For Cable Kneeboarding

Note: This article first appeared in the Winter 2021 issue of The Water Skier magazine, the official publication of USA Water Ski & Wake Sports. If you are not a member of USA Water Ski & Wake Sports and you are interested in receiving the quarterly magazine, join now.


Compiled by Tom Kohl


Kneeboarding on the cableCable kneeboarding is an aspect of the sport that has become mainstream over the past few years. Athletes and cable parks around the world are starting to take notice and take cable kneeboarding seriously. This instructional is packed with tips from the top riders to get a handle in your hand and get you making laps at a cable park near you.


Earlier in the year I reached out to some of the world’s top kneeboarders on social media on the topic of cable kneeboarding. I got some great feedback. Enjoy these tips and take them with you next time you head to the cable park!


Brandon Hults, Chicago Ill., Team HO @bhults9
1. Start with features that begin with a low angle into the water, specifically ride on features. They are much more kneeboard friendly and a ton of fun!


2. Try a kneeboard seat for a more comfortable sitting position and softer landings. There are a few different types, a quick search on the web and you will have a few options.


Jared Bohlen, Orland Fla., Team HO, Cable Operator at OWC @wahdernyrd26
3. When you are ready to take a break from riding, use the designated drop area! This allows the cable operator to switch out the handle for the next rider without missing a spot.


John Haile, Orlando Fla., Team O’Brien, Cable Operator at OWC @johnhaile
4. Do not ride down the middle of the cable. This will send wakes toward features, which will affect the rider behind you. When you are not hitting anything, edge toward the features, as a bonus give them spray! The rider behind you will love you.


5. When approaching a feature, edge toward it with a moderate cut. Flatten off at the feature and keep your body centered, keep the handle low and into your lead hip. This will help carry your momentum, so you do not get pulled off the feature early.


6.  Start small and work your way up. Do not go for the gnarliest feature or trick right away if you have not comfortably ridden away from simpler features or tricks. Understanding the fundamentals will help you improve faster with less chances of injury.


7. When rounding corner buoys, edge out to the outside buoy far in advance. Do not rush out to it at the last moment. Keep the handle close to your waistline. Watch the carrier, (where the rope connects to the cable). When you see the carrier change direction or hear the click from the carrier passing the corner pulley, edge slightly into the direction the cable is pulling you.


Polo Vich, France @polovichtnco
8. Push down on the handle as hard as you can to stay balanced in the air. This motion engages your core muscles and keeps your body in the right position.


Stephen Hausler, Australia, Team HO @stephenhausler
9. For big air off the kicker, try to make your cut as late as possible. This will create more centrifugal force and send you to the moon!


James Taylor, Great Britain @prokneeboarding
10. Safety first! Always be aware of your surroundings. For example, make sure your landing area is clear for the upcoming feature you are going to hit.


I hope these tips give you a little motivation to find a cable near you. There are cable parks all over the world, and riders and operators who are willing to help. Hop on the web, find a park, and try something new! If you have any other questions, feel free to reach out to any of the riders featured in this instructional via social media. Oh, one more thing, if you have not seen it yet, check out the “How To Round Cable Park Corners” video produced by Westrock Wake Park to get the inside line on making it around the cable successfully. Enjoy the cable!

If you have more questions, feel free to reach out to Tom via social media - Instagram tks_h2o and Facebook @Tom Kohl!