Wakeboards come in many different lengths and widths that determine how the board behaves under your feet. To find the best wakeboard for your needs, there are a few things to consider before you buy. The most important factors are your riding style, your weight and your height. The most common mistakes that occurs is buying a board that does not provide enough lift on water. Here is a simple chart of different wakeboard sizes:

  • <100lbs (45kg) <130cm
  • 90-150lbs (40-68kg) 130-134cm
  • 130-180lbs (58-81kg) 135-139cm
  • 170-250lbs (77-113kg) 140-144cm
  • 200-275+lbs (90-113+kg) >144cm

Wakeboard length

While the feel of the wakeboard also depends on the overall shape, shorter boards are generally easier to spin and flip in the air. This makes them a preferred choice for freestyle riders. The downside of shorter boards is that they are more difficult to land with as well as being slower and taking more energy to turn with on the water.

Longer boards are better for beginners because they are easier to maneuver and offer more control and stability. Being bigger and heavier, they are not often used for bigger jumps or tricks. However, due to the overall bigger surface area, longer boards also float better and are easier to land tricks with for smaller jumps. Great for beginners!

Wakeboard weight

The lighter your wakeboard is, the easier it is to control. In addition to a smoother and effortless ride, reduced weight can also lead to better flex for enhanced pop and easier landings. While lighter weight leads to a more fun ride, it does come at a price. More contemporary designs will naturally be more expensive.

How experienced are you?

While the right size is the biggest factor in finding the best wakeboard, your experience level also has an impact in what kind of shape would suit you the best. Some of these designs are geared towards advanced riders whereas other shapes are more beneficial if you just started wakeboarding. However, that doesn’t mean that an experienced rider would not enjoy a beginner’s board, or vice versa. The main focus should be in finding a board shape that suits you the best.

Wakeboard rocker

The main rocker shapes on a wakeboard are the continuous rocker and the 3-stage rocker and they offer different properties in how the board floats and performs. A continuous rocker means that the board has a gradual curve throughout the board. Staged rockers are flat in the middle part of the board which gives a different feel on the water. There are also in-between designs or hybrids, such as the hybrid rocker, blended 3-stage, abrupt continuous and the hybrid 3-stage rocker.

Continuous rockers offer speed and smooth turning on the water with a predictable pop. If you enjoy full-speed carving on a still day, this is the board for you!

3-stage rockers provide enhanced pop when hitting the wake but has a looser feeling on the water. This shape makes the board slower as well due to increased drag and makes turning more difficult. Because the fins on a three-staged rocker swim deeper, you need to use the edges of your wakeboard in order to turn properly. Additionally, the flat center also increases the feeling of impact when landing tricks.

Mellow continuous rockers and 3-stage rockers are great options if you are just starting

Wakeboard materials and different base shapes

Concaves are at the bottom of your wakeboard to create lift on the water. They come in different designs such as double or single concave, each having their own properties. For example, a double concave in the middle will sit higher in the water.

Channels act like long fins and break the tension of the water before the board. A board with channels in the middle part of the board will have powerful turns and good release on the wave However, a board with channels all the way from nose to tail will hook better to the fins but at the expense of the enhanced release. Featureless bottoms have molded-in fins and no channels. Controlling these boards rely mostly on the overall shape of the board, fin setup as well as the rocker.

V-shape spines makes edge-to-edge movements easier as well as providing that much-needed help when landing tricks. This design is mostly seen on 3-stage rockers.

Just like snowboard bases, wakeboard bases also come with extruded and sintered bases and provide durability and low friction on the water.

Grind bases are meant for riders who spend most of their day doing rail tricks. Most manufacturers use a special material on their bases in response to the wear and tear of grinding on rails. Check your favorite brands for more information on the best wakeboard for your needs.

Wakeboard edge designs

Generally speaking, sharper edges help the board turn more aggressively. While this design enhances the power and speed while carving, they are more unforgiving and you are more likely to catch an edge. Therefore, sharper edges are designed with fast cruising in mind rather than freestyle riding. If rails and spinning are more up your alley, we suggest you get a board with variable or rounded edge shape for a more forgiving ride.

Variable edges have different sharpnesses in the middle vs. the nose and tail of the board. This gives you the best of both worlds and offer great power in turns but is still forgiving enough for rails and spinning. Variable edges also create more pop and lift while the thinner edges help enhance powerful carving. A great all-rounder!

Wakeboard fins

Wakeboard fins help your board grip to the water in they come in a variety of sizes and configurations. Longer fins will naturally have more grip and stability which makes them great for beginners. As you progress, you might want to get a board with less friction or or change up the fin configuration. Some outside fins are even canted and lean out in an angle for more power when turning.

Longer fins offer more grip and stability.

Molded-in fins are built right in to the wakeboard and cannot be removed. Removable fins, on the other hand, can be taken off and switched by a few turns of a screwdriver. This gives you more options to find your own favorite configuration. Often times, wakeboards have removable fins near the center and molded-in ones closer to the edges.

Did our wakeboard buyer’s guide help you learn anything new? Let us know in the comments.

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