Getting a 3 year old behind the boat?

DefectiveDaveDefectiveDave Posts: 477 Solid Baller
edited May 2018 in Other Stuff
My daughter will turn 3 in the next few months and I hope to get her behind the boat once the water gets warmer. I just want her to have fun, feel comfortable on the water, and be as safe as possible. Any suggestions on the best methods and equipment to get started?


  • JordanJordan Posts: 1,027 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited May 2018
    I would do what @Horton did with Buford. He had her on a
    Ski skimmer and he was on a paddle board being pulled with a separate rope si he could be right beside her. I thought that was genius.
  • Ski_DadSki_Dad Posts: 278 Baller
    edited May 2018
    i have a wakesledz - i'm not sure if 3 is too young but it's pretty cool to get a kid comfortable. My 10 year old used it last year and within 4 weeks he was doing deep water starts on skis.
  • bigskieridahobigskieridaho Posts: 886 Crazy Baller
    If you are just wanting to get her behind the boat then yes sleds, tubes, etc. For my girls we actually have a waterski sled, kind of like the water ski trainer that my girls started on. Get the water ski trainer and just hold them right at the back of the boat and run the boat just in gear. Then just let her back gradually until she is comfortable all the way. Make sure someone is there to jump in the water to be ready to get her if she falls off. Have fun!
  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 1,330 Mega Baller
    If it was easy, they would call it wakeboarding.
  • InthedayIntheday Posts: 126 Baller
    All our kids started on on a knee board sitting on the parents laps/knees. We did start them off the beach and return them to the beach.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 25,801 Administrator
    No matter what equipment or method you use I think the trick is your child has to see other child ski first. I coerced Buford Danger to ski a little bit last year but last week she asked me to go ski and that's how our more successful this year.

    After @rico's skis Buford Danger wants to ski

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  • dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,089 Mega Baller
    I hope to get my grandson behind the boat this year using @Bruce_Butterfield 's suggestions. I started him of last year when he was 1-1/2 years old on the carpet and grass. I think he's motivated, so I'm hoping for early success.

    Is it time to ski, yet?
  • oldjeepoldjeep Posts: 3,142 Mega Baller
    I take all my numerous nieces and nephews up behind the boat when they are little by using 2 skis in chair pose with them on my lap. Dont let them hold handle, and keep there arms over yours so that when you stop you can hold them high. Almost all of them either ski(2) or wakeboard.
    Chuck P
    Not a mechanic but I play one at home
  • RachelShort1RachelShort1 Posts: 4 Baller
    We did the U Shaped ski for our daughter at nearly 3 yrs old. We started on grass and then progressed to running with her across a few inch deep water with people on both sides of her to make sure she didn't fall. She absolutely loved it so the next step was me getting up on 2 skies and her in the middle when I got up. It was a great progression!
  • GHLskierGHLskier Posts: 5 Baller
    We had my little guy behind the boat early into 3 yrs old, real two skis, Connelly cadets with the plastic bar but hanging onto handle for real, not attached to skis. Thought I was quite resourceful and it was easy , comfortable for kid and the real ski sensation.... PADDLEBOARD.... kid in water deep water position dad lying on stomach on paddle board holding second rope just slightly shorter than kid line. Picture dad on right side of kid with rope in right hand extended. Rope is tracking on the left side of the tip of paddleboard so the board wants to angle off right , not into kids path. Left hand on kids right heel.
    Boat takes off , only has to go very slow and your left hand keeps skis in position so they don’t get dragged out the front , nor do the fall on butt as skis stay underneath them. Once on plane , you slowly let go and just keep hand close for support. Once up and balanced kids ha e no issues with the direct contact with boat.. then once it’s time for support bar to go , it’s just a simple hand on butt to get balance point. No expensive trainers or boards required. Progression process was very quick and comfort of being beside him was great for kid.....and nervous mom.
  • DefectiveDaveDefectiveDave Posts: 477 Solid Baller
    Thanks for the input! I hadn't thought of grass or running along the shore. Those are probably great places to start. Also that think @WoodySkier posted seems like it might be money. Now I just have to find another kid that already skis to make her want to do it!
  • behindpropellersbehindpropellers Posts: 188 Baller
    This is my son. He started on the ski skimmer at 2, then went longline with the ski skimmer at 3. Last year I got him up longline! 4 years 4 months!

  • keithh2oskierkeithh2oskier Posts: 412 Crazy Baller
    edited May 2018
    We used the inflatable ski last summer with our 3 year old. She had a blast but was scared of the boat so I started with just pulling her between the docks and then progressed to behind the boat.
  • slvrbulitslvrbulit Posts: 173 Baller
    I bought my 6 year grandson a zup board to pull him behind the boat
  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 1,330 Mega Baller
    edited May 2018
    Here's the prep work if you are up for it:)

    Cross Training
    If it was easy, they would call it wakeboarding.
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 5,657 Mega Baller
    I started with my kids in a tube riding with me when hey were 2 then moved to the skimmer pulling them on the beach at 3 followed by holding the rope behind the boat. By 4 they were riding the skimmer long line we pulled them right off the beach. They were both on skis by 5 long line we didn’t have a boom.
    Mark Shaffer
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