I tried wakeboarding on holiday a few years ago and really enjoyed, so I was keen to learn more at my local wake park at Hove Lagoon, Brighton. This review of Lagoon Watersports wakeboarding lesson in Hove is a summary of how I got on, and why I strongly recommend their lessons.
I previously tried wakeboarding when on holiday in Australia. It was behind a boat and took a couple of goes before a could stand, but once up I was not too bad. As a snowboarder I found the control of the board to be pretty similar and I did OK for the first time – until I tried to jump wake to wake…
Wakeboarding lesson in Hove
It took me four years, but eventually I had to try again. So I booked a Lagoon Watersports wakeboarding lesson in Hove. I went for a private 30 minute session, being october I thought hanging around in the cold while I took turns wakeboarding with other beginners might be a bit chilly.
It turns out that this was a very good decision as there was no one else on the water at all. I had thought 30 minutes would not be long enough, but I was very wrong. It wasn’t the cold water that stopped me but tired arms, hands and shoulders that put an end to my review of Lagoon Watersports wakeboarding lesson in Hove.
The lesson started with getting all the gear which is provided by Lagoon Watersports. This included fitting a wetsuit, impact vest come life jacket, helmet and sorting the correct board and bindings for my size. We then practiced the starting position on dry land a few times.
Lagoon Watersports wakeboarding lesson
Then it was time to get into the water. My instructor warned me it was going to be cold – being shallow a few cold nights in a row meant winter had come early to the lagoon. This means that during good weather it warms up very quickly. This didn’t help me and it was quite a shock as the cold water filled the wetsuit.
The on land prep certainly did its job as I got up and wakeboarding on the first attempt. It was much easier than behind a boat, because the cable runs from above it pulls you up as well as along. I put in a couple of small turns to get a feel and fairly easily made it to the other end.
The 2.0 cable tow at lagoon watersports runs in a straight line before returning the way it came. The idea is that as you approach the end of the cable you go wide putting as much pressure on the cable as possible to build your speed so you can turn as the cable slows to a stop and wakeboard back as the cable returns.
It was at this point by first run came to an abrupt and very cold end. I didn’t go wide enough, pick up enough speed or bend my knees enough, so I got a early taste of the brackish lagoon. I then had to swim a short way to get back hold of the tow, which warmed me up a bit. I was still pleased to get straight back up.
I easily made it back to where I started but again I didn’t quite make it around the town. It wasn’t until I had fallen in that I realised my instructor was shouting ‘bend your knees’. Pretty silly really as a snowboarder I should know better, but I was stood pretty straight in the turn and again did not make it around.
But from then on, armed with the knee bending knowledge, there was no stopping me. I made it around half a dozen circuits before my hands and arms started to get tired. I was doing some one handed riding as it felt easier when not in the turn and had popped a little ollie.
Next my instructor got me to try moving the board around to switch while wakeboarding. I got my weight onto the leading edge the first time and face planted, but after that I found it fairly easy to go from left foot leading to right, which helped distribute the workload onto different muscles.
After the instructor saw me popping a little air he talked me through how to ollie – which is similar to snowboarding – so fairly easy. I then combined the ollie with switching from left foot to right foot leading and I was doing 180s in my first lesson. I even managed cab 180s back out of switch.
For a first lesson the instructor said he was very impressed. To me it felt very similar to snowboarding so I am sure this helped my progression. After the the thirty minutes I was properly knackered, hands, arms and shoulders were particularly tired. The end of the Lagoon Watersports wakeboarding lesson in Hove came at the perfect time.
Review of Lagoon Watersports wakeboarding lesson
Lagoon watersports is a great little centre with full BWSW accreditation. The changing facilities are good, the showers hot and clean, and the cafe serves nice food and drinks at a reasonable price. The instructors have all the relevant qualifications and everyone was very friendly and encouraging in the two times I have visited.
Along with the wakeboarding they offer SUP, windsurfing and raft building. At there other centre at Brighton Marina they also offer dinghy sailing, yacht sailing, and powerboating. Lagoon Watersports also run centres in Gosport near Portsmouth, and in Barcelona.
Hove lagoon is the only wakeboard centre to have three 2.0 cable tows in the UK. There are plenty of features to practice tricks on, including jumps, table tops and rails. As the speed is variable and manually controlled they can run at a pace suited to your ability and stop if you fall.
To conclude this review of Lagoon Watersports wakeboarding lesson in Hove, I have to say it was one of the most fun half hours I have had for a long time. I felt that I progressed massively in a short time and that Lagoon Watersports provide an excellent service. If I lived a bit closer I’d probably become a regular.
If this review of Lagoon Watersports wakeboarding lesson in Hove has you gagging to have a go then you can find out more at: www.lagoon.co.uk