Meet Max Van Der Lee, Low Wood Watersports Instructor and watersports fanatic. Max has been sailing since he was 5 year’s old, and loves all aspects of water based activities. This is his second summer season at Low Wood Bay, and this year he is one of our Sailing and Flyboarding instructors. We caught up with him and asked him the Flyboarding questions that we thought you might like answers to …
Flyboarding is a form of hydroflighting. Participants are strapped to the Flyboard and propelled into the air so that they can stand up metres above the water.
The Flyboard rider is attached to the board by their feet. There is a 28 metre long hose that connects the board to a jet ski, which powers the board.
An instructor will give you a full briefing about everything on the pontoon.
First things first, from a sitting position on the pontoon, we will attach your feet into the Flyboard bindings. You will then sit on the edge of the pontoon, and lower yourself into the water.
Lying on your back in the water, the Flyboard is turned on and you will begin to move backwards away from the pontoon, towing the jet ski into more open water. From here, the instructor will signal you to turn onto your front and bring your legs down underneath you to get yourself to a standing position whilst still semi under water.
The optimum position is keeping a small bend in your knees, a straight back, and fixing your eyes on the horizon line. Hands are used as paddles to steady yourself in the water. When ready and comfortable, the instructor will put a small amount of power into the jets which will begin to push you out of the water.
Getting to the stage of being above the water can be challenging, but once achieved you can begin moving yourself around by dipping your toes down. This angles the jets to aim backwards and, as a result propel the Flyboarder forward. When this is mastered, the rider can start to experiment with going left and right. To do this, the knees are bent in the direction of travel.
Smile! It is easy to focus too much on the mechanics and forget to enjoy yourself. Loosen up, throw up the horns and remember this opportunity doesn’t come around often.
Participants need to be 16 or over and there’s a minimum weight limit of 8 stones. The sport also requires core strength and good balance.
Now you know what’s involved, book your Flyboarding session by speaking to one of the Watersports team on 015394 39441.
Our thanks, as always, to Lotti Ducksbury, one of the Low Wood Bay Watersports team, for providing some of these photos.