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With the heat of the Summer in full force here in the United States, we are all dreaming of surfing behind a boat, or being in any kind of water for that matter. We have a plethora of extremely talented ambassadors that get to do this every day, these ladies make this sport look effortless, and enticing.
From being pulled behind Yachts, to surfing behind some of the best Wakeboarding/Surfing boats in the business these ladies are the epitome of "Living the Life." I caught up with a few of our ambassadors about the sport, competing, and why you should try it.
"I like how you don't need to worry about hurting yourself or falling off because the speed of the boat is far slower. The face people make when they let go of the rope for the first time is something money can't buy!" - Crew Ambassador Stella McInally
Colleen Cain: I compete in CWSA (Competitive Wake Surf Association) competitions. The organization has adopted the D.I.V.E system, difficulty, intensity, variety, execution. You are scored based on this criteria. Diversity meaning a wide range of tricks. Intensity, how aggressive you perform your tricks. Variety, are you riding the board on different aspects? Switch, revert, transferring to the opposite side of the wake. Lastly, execution, how well do you actually perform the trick are you confident going into the trick? Are you wobbly in the landing, or did you stomp it? The D.I.V.E system, unlike other systems is subjective, meaning there is room for the judges options/interpretation which leaves room for rider favoritism. I would much rather see a trick list with a specific point value much like that of the WWA.
Adriane Ohrum: In the CWSA, judges are looking for variety of tricks, intensity of riding, execution of tricks and riding skill, and degree of difficulty. The more unique tricks you execute (that no other rider in your division throws) can help you get more points for your variety.
Janie Hensley: The CWSA uses the DIVE scoring system. D- difficulty. I- intensity. V- variety. E- execution. But in my division, Juniors, I think they add an extra "cuteness" factor.
Kai Roshto: The criteria judges look for in competitions are DIVE, which stands for difficulty, intensity, variety, and execution. This depends on how difficult and if you land the trick. Intensity is your aggression and variety is the different types of tricks you do. All of them are scored out of 30 points and added together for your final score. It is subjective scoring.
Colleen Cain: To me wakeboarding comes with a risk of more injury. It's not too say that wakesurfing eliminates that risk, but you aren't going as fast or as high when you wakesurf. I have a lot of responsibilities including a mortgage, boat payment, and other finances that would suffer as a result of a wakeboard injury. I also work with my hands which would be detrimental to my career. I come from an ocean surf background so for me, wakesurfing was a no brainer.
Adriane Ohrum: I used to wakeboard recreationally. I was never all that good at it, but I did like it and most of our friends did it. We used to only surf in between wakeboard sets. My knees are awful - I have had ACL reconstruction in both and tore my right one again after the surgery, so the impact of wake boarding is too much for my knees. Surfing is much more forgiving and low-impact, and I love it.
Janie Hensley: You don't faceplant as hard. After taking a few hard faceplants this summer, I decided to focus more on wakesurfing. I can do more tricks wakesurfing too.
Kai Roshto: I chose wakesurfing over wakeboarding because I come from Hawaii and love to surf but I enjoy both sports.
Colleen Cain: There is actually a pretty good ratio of men to women in the sport of wakesurfing. It may be slightly male dominant, but that's changing by the day!
Adriane Ohrum: There are definitely more men wake surfers than women, especially in the competition circuit. We are always looking for more female riders!!
Janie Hensley: I don't really know, but I think there's more women in wakesurfing than there are in wakeboarding.
Colleen Cain: Like any competitive sport you have to be self driven, motivated, and committed. I work a 40 hour week and commute 2 hours each way on the weekends and sometimes during the week to get training sets in. It doesn't stop there because I believe in order to be at your best you need to be well rounded in the respect of training implementation. I train both on and off the water. I have a cardio and strength training routine as well as yoga to stay limber. Finances can also pose a challenge. It's not cheap to travel to contests and stay in hotels. You also need to consider entry fees which can range from $100-$200 per contest. There really isn't a payoff unless you ride the pro division.
Adriane Ohrum: In terms of riding, for me, is getting air. But for the sport as a whole, the biggest challenge is spreading awareness of the sport, helping people to understand the difference between wake surfing and wake boarding, and also educating people about how the boat industry has made wake surfing so much more accessible through surf gate technology.
Janie Hensley: Impressing the judges!
Colleen Cain: In short, It's a very addictive sport. I've taken so many people out who have never surfed and before you know it they are grinning ear to ear! It makes me happy to know that I am having a positive influence on growing the sport of wakesurfing. It's also very forgiving on your joints. For those that have suffered injuries, whether it's back, knee, or shoulder, they can still surf. It's actually quite therapeutic and I've actually have seen muscle and tendon rehabilitation because of it.
Adriane Ohrum: BECAUSE IT IS FUN!!!
Janie Hensley: Because everybody can do it! Even my granddaddy and he's had 3 back surgeries!
Kai Roshto: Others should try wakesurfing because it is super fun and a very unique sport.
Colleen Cain: Wakesurfing has been such a positive influence in so many ways to me. I've suffered with anxiety and depression since high school. Wakesurfing to me is my release from my everyday stresses. It's provided me with happiness, new found confidence, new friends, and a positive outlook on life. I don't see wakesurfing ever not being a part of my life because of the positive impact it's had on me. I'd like to continue trying new tricks and doing the best I can competitively. Wakesurfing has opened the door to so many new opportunities as far as traveling, overcoming fears due to my anxiety, sponsorships, and most importantly long lasting friendships.
Adriane Ohrum: Wake surfing has already taken me to places I never imagined. The wake surf community is very welcoming, encouraging and FUN. I have met some of the best people through wake surfing, and now I know amazing, welcoming and kind people all over the country who all have an open invite policy to surf whenever I pass through their neck of the woods. No other sport I have ever participated in has had the family feel that wake surfing does.
Janie Hensley: I don't really know. I don't really want to plan out my future that far, I'm just having fun right now!
Kai Roshto: I hope to become a pro wakesurfer, travel the world and be an ambassador for my sport. I love teaching and helping people learn more about wakesurfing.
Let the 2017 Wakesurf season commece!🏄♀️🤙 @sheshredsco #sheshredscocrew @charlottemastercraftcenter #charlottemastercraftcenter @parkersurfcraft #parkersurfcraft @mastercraftboats #mastercraftboats @nuffgrip #nuffgrip @leadwake #leadwake @seadek #seadek #wakesurfing #wakesurf #girlswhoride #girlswhosurf #surfstyle #lakelife #wetsuitseason #roxy
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