A ski boat is a boat specifically designed to safely tow one or more water skiers. Water-skiing is an exciting and challenging sport defined by rugged individualists and also enjoyed as a family-oriented activity.

Water skiing began in 1922 when Ralph Samuelson strapped two boards to his feet and rigged a clothesline up to his boat on Lake Pepin in Lake City, Minnesota. It took awhile to take off as a recreation sport, but it has exploded into an activity for all ages.

The changing nature of boat design reflects how the sport has evolved over time. Skiers prefer small, soft wakes. Wakeboarders, on the other hand, want big wakes from which to launch aerial maneuvers.

Great ski boats are fairly flat on the bottom. The idea is, of course, to not create a wake because skiers like glassy water. A powerful engine pulls the skier out of the water quickly and maintains the exciting fast speeds desired by everyone.

Many ski boats can also be used for wakeboarding. When wakeboarding you want to create a wake. Some ski boats have a small plate on the back of the boat which can be pushed down or pulled up. When pushed down the plate causes the boat to leave a small wake. When you put the plate up you get a larger wake.

All the rules that apply to power boats also apply to boats towing skiers, and there are some extra rules. The collision prevention rules apply in ski areas. This means a ski boat has no priority over a boat that is passing through the area.

Trick skiing is performed using one or two very short finless skis rather than the conventional gear. In it, skiers try to perform tricks somewhat similar to those of gymnasts while being pulled along by the boat.

Ski jumping is done behind a boat at a fixed speed, with the skier maneuvering to achieve the maximum speed when hitting a ramp floating in the water. The object is to launch themselves into the air with the goal of traveling as far as possible before touching the water.

Water ski racing teams consists of a boat driver, an observer and a skier. The driver will tow the skier behind a powerboat, varying the speed as different water conditions are encountered, according to the driver's knowledge of the skier, the observer's ability to read the skier and the signals which the skier gives to the driver.

Water ski shows usually involves an entertaining theme, multiple boats, and a variety of acts including jumping, swiveling, ballet line, barefooting, doubles, wakeboarding, and the popular pyramids.

Everyone enjoys water skiing, even the spectators! Lots of buff bodies and beautiful bikinis combined with water skiing skills makes an enjoyable day on the water.

Ski Boat Manufactures
American Water Ski Association
Water Ski Hall of Fame and Museum
Wake Boarding magazine
Water Sports Industry Association
International Water Ski Federation
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