Progressions and Keys to Landing Your First 360 on a Wakeboard
November 29, 2017
The 360 is one of the most sought after tricks a beginner wakeboard rider will try. It seems intimidating at first, but with a few progressions and a little bit of practice, you should be able to get it done in no time.
Progressions Before You Ride
Believe it or not, there are some things you can do before you even get behind our boats that can be very effective. Find a flashlight in the house or rod, pvc pipe, hammer or any other cylinder that can be passed between your hands. You'll look fairly silly, but spin your body in circles while passing the rope between your hands. Imagine the takeoff and the landing. Do all this while fixing your eyes on one point. This kind of muscle memory will get your hand-eye coordination up to speed.
Practice Your Surface 360
If you're an absolute beast, then by all means, grip it and rip it and try to land the 360s. But if you're like me, you'll just find yourself taking some nasty spills. So instead, practice doing 360s on the water without leaving the water at all. Start at a low speed (Set the boats cruise control to 11-13 mph) and practice rolling from toe side to heel side while you pass the rope behind your back.
Commit to the Jump
Similar to landing the back roll on a wakeboard, you have to take off first! Whatever you do, don't start your spin early. Stay calm, and make sure your board is out of the water before you start your spin. The move is much easier when you have enough time to complete the trick, so hit that jump hard enough to clear the wake. Go ahead and fill the ballast on the Heyday WT-1 at Gephardt Boat Rentals to get as much air as possible.
Make the Pass
Seems simple enough but in practice it all happens so fast. Do some drills on dry ground. Imagine you take off on your heel edge, spin fast and land on your aft foot heel edge while making your pass. Start spinning faster and faster until you are spinning as fast as you would if you were in the air.
Spot the landing
While in the air keep your eye on one spot so that your vision is not just one blur. You can practice this step during your surface 360s. While doing your surface 360s, watch the boat (or the opposing wake). When you're in the air, just keep your eye on that spot until you come down.
As long as you've done all the other steps right, just receive that opposing wake with your legs and take a bow to your adoring fans.
Add some flare
The 360 is a fantastic move that you can make your own. Once you get the hang of the 360, you can start adding a grab to the start of the spin or at the end.