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Growing skiing

ballsohardballsohard Posts: 439 Crazy Baller
edited October 13 in News & Other Stuff
We always talk about growing the sport which is great but I'm curious why we don't encourage a more diverse group of individuals to get into skiing.

How can we accomplish this type of growth?

Even pro golf seems to have a more expansive group of participants.

This likely makes a lot of potential skiers shy away.

Wouldn't it be great to see an African American run 39.5 off?



  • MillerTime38MillerTime38 Posts: 382 Crazy Baller
    I have never been to any ski lakes that didn’t allow African American skiers 🤷🏼‍♂️. This thread is gonna die quick or go way off topic, my money is on off topic
  • ballsohardballsohard Posts: 439 Crazy Baller
    edited October 13
    I never insinuated that they didn't allow African Americans. I'm just wondering how we can get tons of people of all backgrounds interested in an awesome sport like skiing.

    I have never been to a ski lake that doesn't allow big money prizes at tournaments but that makes no difference because almost nobody knows about skiing.

    We need to get the word out there in a better way.

  • MillerTime38MillerTime38 Posts: 382 Crazy Baller
    edited October 13
    @ballsohard i have taken a couple of my African American friends (or as they like to be referred to as my black friends) out to the lake and they enjoyed it but at the end of the day referred to it as WPS(white people shit)

    You refer to golf as a comparison, if you want to golf it takes $200 to buy a starter set of clubs, $40 for green fees and a local golf course which there are tens of thousands of them located all over the country, compared to waterskiing where you need a ski, jacket, rope handle, oh and a bank loan for a boat....oh yeah and a large body of water
  • ALPJrALPJr Posts: 2,300 Mega Baller
    edited October 13
    Here’s the trailer from The Waters Edge, a movie about a criss-cross country trip to ski sites in the lower 48 filmed in ‘05/‘06 ish. It’s a pretty broad, fun look into the waterski community. There are a couple places in CT that focus on bringing the sport to diverse groups, and raise funds for adaptive skiers, wounded warriors, and at-risk youth.
  • DWDW Posts: 2,247 Mega Baller
    @ballsohard - curious as to why you posed the question, any thread on this site I have scrolled through simply goes down the path of growth and inclusion of anybody / everybody that could be or wants to be a participant. As Horton mentions, there are several barriers to entry all relating to equipment and water.
  • ObrienslalomObrienslalom Posts: 82 Baller
    The reality is 95% of us are in the sport because our parents were (or otherwise exposed to it regularly).

    Agree that it is not equally appealing to all people. Unfortunately, it is not all that appealing to people that aren't into #lakelife already. You can take them out for a weekend and get them to combo ski, but it takes an interest and dedication to slalom. I converted my wife, but don't have high hopes for any of my friends.
  • JohnseedJohnseed Posts: 26 Baller
    One thought I had was this....
    Competitive skiing isn't something easy to do. If you can run a pass through the slalom course at any speed or line length you are already in a small company of skiers. The time it takes to progress not to mention the bumps and bruises from falling does not appeal to lots of folks.

    I think this is why lots of us still own combos, a wide slalom, or heaven forbid a introduce a newbie to our world of skiing madness. We have probably 10x the number of kids tuning on our lake than we do skiing or even takes zero skill to ride a tube.

    Technically you can 'play' golf with zero skill, lots of people do it....the scores might be astronomically high but people are playing. Skiing isn't the same at all.

    All that being said, I never understand why everyone doesn't love this sport. Time on the lake with friends and family, enjoying nature, challenging yourself to be better, and making lots of spray, what's not to love?

    Off all the folks we have taught it almost always comes down to their first bad fall....after that they either quit or become more determined to succeed.....that's the only line of diversity I can really see in the sport.
  • WishWish Posts: 8,138 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited October 13
    Lots and I meant LOTs of diversity in viewership when pro tour stops were held either in Down Town Orlando or Very close by. For the average Joe spectator, the sport looks hard. Impossible to understand (line off the rope..what??) It looks monotonous from shore..same thing over and over and over. Without to much thought by Joe spectator, it looks like it’s very expensive to do. I’ll wager a guess that after each and every publicly seen pro event With a large public presence on site created less then .05% in any sales uptick of boats, skis, lake property, and the like for any new to the sport person ....regardless.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • kurtis500kurtis500 Posts: 48 Baller
    I wouldnt try th NASCAR model
  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 1,772 Member of the BallOfSpray Hall Of Fame
    Says the world's foremost expert on peeing into the wind.......
    I'm Ancient. WTH do I know?
  • swc5150swc5150 Posts: 2,432 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    I think you'd be pretty hard pressed to find someone who isn't aware that water skiing is a thing. If a person doesn't have some innate desire to try it, no amount of additional promotion will help IMHO.
    Scott Calderwood
  • Keith MenardKeith Menard Posts: 689 Crazy Baller
    I don't think the sport is even at a point to discuss reaching out to specific communities. I think we need to take pass the handle very seriously. The Nipmuc waterski club, Holland (aquariders) ski team, and Webster Waterski Collective all host learn to ski days. Put the handle in the hand and go from there.
  • skichiefskichief Posts: 5 New Baller
    46% of US adults can swim. How many of those are urging their children to get in a lake?
    Waterski The World

  • MDB1056MDB1056 Posts: 520 Crazy Baller
    @MISkier - 30 acres is a lake? Yikes that’s tiny
  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 3,037 Mega Baller
    edited October 14
    @MDB1056, that size is about the smallest I could envision putting a slalom course in safely while still giving the proper clearances from shorelines and docks. And, I have seen some public lakes about that size (maybe slightly larger) that would be awesome for a slalom course.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • JohnseedJohnseed Posts: 26 Baller
    @LoopSki - my wife often reminds me that this is supposed to be fun and to stop taking it soooooo serious. A bad day skiing is still an awesome day.

    To that point there was a thread posted a while back that basically said that sometimes we only put forth the negative....micro-adjustment of find, bindings, boat wake, zero off settings etc....instead of just how awesome it feels to throw walls of spray turning buoys and the rush of speed across the back of a boat wake on flat glassy water.
  • unksskisunksskis Posts: 507 Crazy Baller
    Wanley Fendrich - German Champion Wakeboarder
  • kurtis500kurtis500 Posts: 48 Baller
    edited October 14
    "I'm curious why we don't encourage a more diverse group of individuals to get into skiing. "

    You make the tournament skiing 'world' appear inherently racist, or bias against people with a differnet skin color for NOT taking action. I really doubt thats the case, you may want to word it differently.

    I've taken 3 african-american FAMILIES including kids out skiing, tubing and etc. over the years. They all enjoy it and we have a blast. 2 of them have boats, but for fishing. Its what they like more and they can throw a rope out behind it whenever they want.

    There are a lot of organizations already like Big Brothers & Big Sisters, the YMCA and etc. that want people like you to pick up a group of kids and show them a good time on the lake. Spend some time teaching them a new sport or hobby and get their focus on mentally and physically healthy activity. More inner city kids have no father or role model to teach them life and they LOVE having someone take the time to teach them and be patient. I spend 1 week - 2 times a year at youth camps with kids so I practice what I preach. Most top athletes learn from a young age, so investing in the youth now will grow the sport more later.
  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,486 Mega Baller
    People find this sport because of a mental condition (type A, OCD, or otherwise addictive personality) and the enjoyment of competition that’s mostly personal. As long as I have a core group of skiers I’m not worrying about “growing “ the sport because it doesn’t make me any $$$.
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
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