A controversial topic often discussed across rider communities, should you wax your wakeboard? Many cable park riders took their inspiration from skateboarding and began to wax the bottom of their boards some years ago, but the topic has long been controversial.

I myself have been an advocate of both sides. I had a deluxe back in 2013 which I had had for some time. The bottom became quite heavily scratched and I noticed it began to slow at the bottom getting caught on obstacles. I was thinking of ways of getting my board back up to speed on the obstacles and I decided to use skate wax on it. I applied the wax to the bottom of the board and melted it with a hairdryer before scraping the excess off with a ruler. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing and thinking back now I could have got it badly wrong and ruined the board. But I noticed a difference. The wax didn’t stay on for too long, but while it lasted I felt a much smoother ride over the obstacles.

Skateboard wax doesn’t repel water so it can actually cause more friction between the board and the obstacles. I have since tried using Wake Wax, designed specifically for wakeboards and found it to be really useful. The wax stays on much longer and when I’ve experimented with this I have absolutely flown. The difference has been monumental on the obstacles at the cable park. Instead of relying on the water to spray down the obstacles and making sure there are no dry patches to derail your ride, the wax does the job for you.

Many people don’t like the idea of waxing because if they are being pulled at a constant speed they say wax isn’t necessary. These people also often worry about a slippery landing with a waxed board. Personally, I would have to agree to an extent. I have never noticed waxing to make a difference to my speed when being pulled through the water, only on the speed at which I can hit obstacles. If you are not using your wakeboard in water parks or on cables to hit obstacles, then waxing the bottom isn’t necessary.

Some riders aren’t just waxing the bottom of the board. Applying wax to the top can help prevent the graphics fading or discolouring from the sun. This is purely cosmetic but it can definitely prevent the top from yellowing.

Waxing your board can be good for restoring your speed on obstacles and for UV protection, however you need to be careful when applying it. My makeshift heated skate wax in 2013 was definitely not the best way to go about it. I could have easily damaged the base and the core. Before you apply any wax to your board, check how to do it and make sure you are buying proper wakeboard wax which repels water. There are many YouTube videos like this one which give clear instructions on how to apply the wax.


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Oli Ward

Oli has camped and hiked his way around Australia and most of Europe. He also loves writing about his experiences and sharing his knowledge.