Advice on learning tricks. Plan and Vision. Is it way over my limits???

gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 859 Crazy Baller
Have started to enjoy tricking more lately. Try to trick when we can not slalom.

OK I am old (60) and have only been tricking a few years now so the plan and vision might be way above my capabilities
It does not have to be a trick run. Just want to enjoy and perform the tricks.
I would be grateful for some trick guru advice and reality check ;0)

Sometimes successful means that I can do all of them in a row without falling.
  • Cannot do the offside Back Wrap.
  • Can ski well backwards and jump a on the wakes.
  • Can ski FW on one foot crossing the wakes quite well.
  • Can do the unwrap O but not on the jump.
  • Can ski Toehold well forward but look down after the 180 and fall.
This is my plan and vision.

Life is too short not to enjoy every day!


  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 4,013 Infinite Pandas
    @gsm_peter You have solid skills already! If you were in college, you would be a valuable asset to most teams.

    I like your "working on" list. Quite reasonable but a challenge. You won't get it all but you might score a couple others (WBB, TWB, TWF, TS) to boost your points.

    Nice "vision" list as well.

    You have improved since we skied a while ago. No reason you can't continue to improve. Some stuff gets harder (impossible) as we age (reverse backwrap!). Absolutely chase your vision. Just don't get discouraged when progression isn't as fast as you plan. You might have to accept going backwards (I've lost so many tricks...). As long as you keep chasing your goals with enthusiasm, it's all good. You will enjoy it!

  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 2,259 Member of the BallOfSpray Hall Of Fame
    I agree with Eric that the reverse back wrap would be really hard for a chronologicaly gifted person to learn since it requires both flexibility and a little contortion. Best to focus on other tricks and live with the full back for the reverse tricks.

    For toes, lots of dry land practice for the TB. On the water, do lots of pulling drills to increase the strength in your rope leg.

    I think the rest of your list is very doable.
    I'm Ancient. WTH do I know?
  • GusGus Posts: 66 Baller
    TS (a quick 130 pts) might seem scary, but its not. Reverse TS is.
    TBB? Doesn't that require reverse TB?
    I wouldnt bother about the 540 and 720, you have to drop O and RO for those. Slow, boring.
    Instead of the O's, the BB's are faster, and you can do them fast without being able to 'hold' a reverse backwrap. Having said that, i'm still doing the O's myself :(
    The WBB starting from wrap, landing backwards, inside to out is easier than a WO, or similar.
    And once you got that, the step to doing a W5F, inside out is also quite small.
  • liquid dliquid d Posts: 1,465 Mega Baller
    Do you have college eligibility left?
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 6,064 Mega Baller
    That is a great target list. I think every year about spending more time tricking and haven't done it. You got some great advice above and I would agree don't focus on the reverse back wrap. I do a back to back into the reverse backwrap but I can't hold it. When I do RWB I do it into the full back.

    Of your list I have your successful column, most of your working on column (Lb and LF are a little sketchy) and WBB, TWB and TWF plus a TS. I would say that once you get TB and TF solid the TWB and TWF aren't that far behind and TS isn't that hard with a little coaching.

    I would work on some one legged squats (modified pistols I do them down to a box) and step ups in the gym. They will help build the individual leg strength you need to do some of the toe tricks.

    Mark Shaffer

  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 859 Crazy Baller
    Thanks. A lot to Think about.
    Can you describe a WBB starting with a wrap?
    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 6,064 Mega Baller
    @gsm_peter for the WBB you get in your back wrap position and i work to a full back position. It is probably easier to land from outside the wake to the inside.

    Mark Shaffer

  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 859 Crazy Baller
    Thanks for your nice words.
    When will you visit us in Stockholm?
    We can maybe do a Stockholm tour skiing type 8 sites (All within 0,5-2,5h)?
    All, let me know if would like to ski in Sweden! I try to help out.
    There are about 66 clubs total.

    Any advice on dry land practice for the TB?

    I skip the reverse Toes in my vision list. I did not realize that they are that difficult.
    Will include the Toe SS in my visions.
    I will not skip the O's until I can do them consistently and also perform some more tricks.

    Great advises.
    I have not tested Back Wrap to full back yet. Might be doable next season.
    Yes, I get better jumps from outside to center.

    Shall I drop the Step over line?
    Haven't tried so many. I have problem with the rotation ending up in a SS - and a fall...

    There are unfortunately few occasions to train Toes at our club. There has not been any release person available this season. I have only 4 toe runs so far.
    I have reasonable strong legs but will continue to train them.

    I am quite flexible and have not yet given up on the Reverse BW.
    In fact I have not tried it so many times. Last try I managed to ski a second in RBW before I lost the handle.

    Have got a new member in the club that are keen on learning tricks.
    We plan to get some Trick coaching next year.

    Any more dry land training proposals?

    Plan to ski last time tomorrow. Most likely a trick run!
    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 6,064 Mega Baller
    @gsm_peter don't drop the line back it is a good trick. If you get stalled in a side slide you are focused on the rope instead of getting turned. Keep your head up, lead with your knee over the rope and turn your head all the way around. Your body goes where your eyes go. Someone else may have more/better advice than I do but this works for me.

    To do reverse back wrap you should learn it outside the wake where the boat helps you hold things in place. You can gradually work to getting it behind the boat. A wider handle can help to learn that. I am not good at the reverse back wrap so someone else can probably help more with that.

    Mark Shaffer

  • andjulesandjules Posts: 876 Mega Baller
    edited November 2018
    +1 on a wider handle for old-man-reverse-back-wrap. I've only gotten on my trick ski about 3-4 times in the last 20 years. The last time I did, I brought a wakeboard handle in the boat and it made a world of difference.

    The other thing worth considering (if you're really dedicated) is researching a range-of-motion exercise/stretching regimen. Either a physio, rehab trainer or even a crossfit trainer who has an interest in mobility (kind of a sub-cult in the already-cult-ish crossfit world) might be able to help you.
  • dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,412 Mega Baller
    On dry land training proposals.... I really like my Spooner and traction real combo. I would like to mount a binding to the Spooner and add a gymnastics springboard to the equation to maybe better simulate wake tricks and get a slight lean away from the "boat" for more tension. Those springboards are pretty pricey though, I may just try building my own.
    Is it time to ski, yet?
  • GusGus Posts: 66 Baller
    The reason to do the WBB (and W5F) from inside to out is air. Its way easier to get air, you are falling off the wake, kind of. So just by moving sideways 'a bit determined' you get air already. Somehow that's easier than getting air by moving sideways uphill and trying to get lauchhed into the air. I think.
  • klindyklindy Posts: 2,929 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @Gus The WBB I'd agree that it's easier from the inside out. However preturning the W5F is almost guaranteed. Personally I think the W5F from the outside in is easier.

    @gsm_peter I wouldn't give up on the reverse back wrap. If I can make my 55 year old, 2.0m, fat body with bad shoulders and a bad back to do it, anyone can! Even though it's bad form, a trick to learning how to hold it is to put the handle low (below your backside). It simply helps the contortion of the trick. Do it behind the boat or off the wake if it feels easier. The purpose is only to learn how it feels to "hold" the reverse back wrap. It forces you to bend your knees aggressively and it makes you really concentrate on your balance to prevent falling over. Most importantly it allows the pull from the boat to be better centered on your center of mass.

    It will allow you to get into the back position more slowly and in control, instead of whipping into the back position only to whip back out by the boat. So get into the "crouched" back position and hold the handle literally against the back of your thigh. Then once you realize how to trigger the muscles you need to hold it, slowly stand up straighter into a better position. You'll literally be able to feel the torque change and your muscles work to resist.

    You'll likely fall over a few times to the side or away from the boat but it shouldn't take long. Once you develop some muscle memory you'll be able to quickly get into the reverse back position and do BB, WBB, etc. even when you have no intention to hold it.

    Don't give up!
    Keith Lindemulder
    AWSA Chairman of the Board

  • ToddLToddL Posts: 3,033 Mega Baller
    A good tip on reverse back wrap: Turn backwards more slowly to enter into the position.

    If you "fling" yourself to the back, you will recoil and get flung back forward. Be smooth and steady into it, and you will have no recoil and be able to hold it longer.
    -- The future of skiing depends upon welcoming novice skiers regardless of age to our sport.
  • GusGus Posts: 66 Baller
    edited November 2018
    One really nice discovery for me this season was that I can do the 'simple' toe tricks (TB,TF, TS, TWB, TWF) without having a release person in the boat, using a 'barefoot front toe handle'. One that doesn't have the so called 'bear trap'.
    Another advantage of that handle is that they are usually quite wide, good for the reverse back wrap :)
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 4,013 Infinite Pandas
    @klindy Preturn is a myth (as far as credit/NC - it is an artifact of slo mo video which is not allowed in judging). If you go early, W5F is very difficult from in to out. If you are patient or strong enough to blast over the wake, it's a reasonable way to do the trick. Outside in is a steeper wake so it's easier to float a trick with the kick from the wake. Inside out is downhill (the table is higher than the outside) so you can be a little quicker and flatter in to out. Different challenges and different advantages.

    @Gus The safety of a harness you can kick off is real. But use a release person whenever possible. TF has given me some of the fastest hardest falls. I will do the simple toes without a release (and no heel strap) if that's the only option. Barefoot harnesses are used without releases for barefooting - but barefooters are a lot tougher than me. It is a great way to train a release person though.

    I like a smaller 12" handle for reverse backwrap. I fits better around my butt. Plus it's easier to control the handle pass or wrap in with the small handle. Actually displace your knees with a knee bend to make the body twist work. When I was young and flexible I didn't have to bend much - now it's a lot more. Handle above the butt if you are going for snap BBs, below the butt to stick it and cut to the wake. Never ride straight in reverse backwrap.

    Unless you go out wide on the drivers wake (for RFF), turn into reverse backwrap and cut out wider. Really fun exercise that gets you comfortable on the edge. It's also fun on the other side with regular backwrap.

    Best LF prep trick: turn to back, pull your foot out of the back binding and turn front on 1 foot. It's harder than it sounds. Eventually you will get comfortable enough with one foot off the ski that you can hold the back position and get comfortable stuffing your foot in the water. LB, LF aren't far now.

    @gsm_peter Japan (to visit Kirk) is the big winter trip this year. Maybe a summer Euro trip next year?

  • jhughesjhughes Posts: 1,245 Mega Baller
    What I've noticed as an older tricker (I started at while back at age 30, so still started ~27 years later than most good trickers) is that once you get the first 500 points, the tricks after that become ridiculously harder and for me that has meant less interest. Most trickers who rack up thousands of points got over these hurdles when they were 5.

    It was really fun to get those first surface tricks, then it just becomes swimming. Less patience for that as I get older for sure. The falls can be HARD, too. So, meh. It's something to do on the lake when I can't slalom or have slalomed enough for the day.
  • dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,412 Mega Baller
    The way to learn tricks is the same at any age:

    Step 1. want to do the trick
    Step 2. believe you can do the trick
    Step 3. attempt to do the trick. repeat as needed.
    Step 4. do the trick!

    @jhughes It seems step 1 became a stumbling block for you :smile:
    Is it time to ski, yet?
  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 859 Crazy Baller
    Funny. I started tricking about 27 years after you. o:)
    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 859 Crazy Baller
    Thanks for the instructions.
    Tried it yesterday. Skied outside the wake and slowly got into position. I could ski type 5 seconds with the ski in 150 degrees.
    Could it be the handle position or the ski is not flat on the water (still a little bit in a RSS)?
    To bad the boat went up today...
    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 859 Crazy Baller
    Made a new trick today.
    Made my first 540, four times in a row.
    LFF. Starting front counter rotation ended in BW.

    Season has been windy and cold so a lot of tricking.
    Type 10 runs total 4 hours.
    Starting to be more stable now. Some times in the list are now almost every run.
    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 859 Crazy Baller
    Season 2019 summary

    Trick skiing is difficult. It seems to be very difficult…
    For me it takes for ages to improve - or do I just have too high goals?

    When we can we slalom but very often it is too bad conditions for slalom.
    So usually our trick runs are under less than perfect conditions.
    Most trick runs are fairly long. We just ski around and enjoy skiing and add some trick training.
    Total trick runs are plus 50 (type 24 hours in/on the water).

    It has been fun. I can clearly experience much better ski control and stability.
    However, I have only added one new successful trick. Starting to make approved the third W-180.
    Also make approved W-180 from center – outside the wake.
    The Wrapped WO is still a struggle but I get about 50% of the unwind without falling so it might come.

    There was only a release person available one occasion for a short run. So no toe skiing this year…

    Hope for more tricks next year and maybe a trick run for competing.

    Trick Waterskiing basic training Sweden Stockholm 2019 Oct

    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • skibackwardsskibackwards Posts: 78 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Make a trick practice board. It will really help with the reverse back wrap position. I have made several but have no pictures. Have trick rope attached to something and you can learn MORE than the basics without water. My son and daughter learned all of their tricks except ski lines and flips on the practice board before trying them on the water. Maybe some other trickers out there can supply some pictures. There are several styles. Trickers, please supply those pictures.
  • GusGus Posts: 66 Baller
    In my experience, there are two things that can help you make real progress with tricks: 1) plan at least one full week (the more the better..) with tricking at least twice every day. And 2) during such a week, next to the fun stuff and next to the consolidation of the tricks you know, really keep attacking the next trick; or the next few similar difficulty level tricks in your progression. I'm pretty sure that after such a week you'll see a jump in your skills. It's worth the investment!
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 4,013 Infinite Pandas
    @skibackwards I have better luck dry land practicing on a trampoline. Tie off a rope so you get comfortable with handle passes (or toe wrap ins). I don't use a ski, just try to imagine the ski and water.

    The float is fun. Falling on the trampoline doesn't hurt. Trampoline falls might also help your awareness so you can get the ski to a safe position (on that second bounce). It's an enjoyable workout that teaches you balance and rotation.

    The lazy susan swivel training device is so different from the water that I never made much use of it. The weighted or bungee ropes for it were complex and stilted. A plain bungee rope on the living room carpet is more valuable. Also it's a good strength rehab tool.

    Dry land is valuable - even if it's just your handle tied off to a doorknob.

  • skibackwardsskibackwards Posts: 78 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @eleeski we saved the trampoline for ski lines and toe wake lines. It really helped those tricks.
    Please let's show a picture or two of a practice devise.
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