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The Keys to Landing the Perfect Back Roll on a Wakeboard

The back roll is one of the most basic inverts you can throw off the wake, and can cause a lot of “oooo”s and “aaaa”s from your boating companions. Today we are going to go over some basics tips to help you work through this trick.

What is the back roll?

The back roll is different than the back flip. In a back roll, after you “pop” off the wake, you roll perpendicularly with the boat by simply letting the wakeboard follow its natural trajectory. Which is different than the back flip where you send the board directly front-over-back. The back roll tends to be an easier trick for beginners to learn as they are simply able to use their momentum after hitting the wake.

Commit to jumping the wake

One of the most common mistakes you’ll see beginners doing when learning this invert is not committing to the jump. You’ll see them start their roll before they’ve committed to the jump. If you’re riding Gephardt Boat Rentals Heyday WT-1, go ahead and fill the ballast to make a larger wake. Stay hard on your heel edge until your board is mostly out of the water.

Keep the rope in tight to the body

Beginners often find themselves so focused on the roll that they let their hands go. This dramatically loses you momentum on your spin, and makes it harder to correct while in the air.

Spot the landing

When you are halfway through your rotation, USE YOUR EYES and figure out where you are going to land. It sounds so obvious, but when you’re inverted it’s not so obvious. Stay focused so that you can absorb that impact correctly. You wouldn’t look at the sky on a simply wake clearing jump, you shouldn’t be blind to the water during a back roll either!

Receive the landing with the knees

When you are about to land, put a slight bend in your knees. Again, seems obvious, right? Well, if you popped off the wake correctly, your legs will be relatively straight, just remember to put a slight bend in them and, if possible land on the down slope of the opposite wake. Again, the larger your wake the higher you go, thus giving you more time to complete the rotation, furthermore, the larger your wake, the more gradual your landing will be, so go ahead and fill that ballast on the WT-1.

For more tips, follow this step-by-step backroll wakeboarding video

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