Steez (n): a term that combines the words style and ease. A rider with steez would be referred to as “steezy”
Take your riding up a notch by adding some style to your set! Grabbing your board not only makes your session look way better, but it also helps to progress your wake jump by improving your weight distribution at takeoff for a smoother landing. Grabs are guaranteed to impress your friends, but they are also a Silent Coach* to help progress your riding with the least risk of injury. The act of grabbing forces you to be patient and concentrate on your wake jump; if you are unable to grab, you have likely rushed your takeoff. Because every trick in wakeboarding is simply a variation of the wake jump–ie. how you approach and leave the wake–the various ways you manage this approach and take off allow you to progress by opening the door to new tricks.
Key: Maximize the wake jump
The most common mistake made when learning the various grabs occurs when you try to grab the board too early, causing you to leave the wake too soon and detract from the height of your wake jump.
You need to maximize the wake jump so that you have time to grab the board and poke or tweak it out for all that steez.Remember to ride all the way up the wake and keep with rope with you into the air to maximize your height and amplitude.
Key: Keep your weight even as you leave the wake
If you leave the wake with uneven weight or if you do not have control of the rope, you will become stretched out through the air, causing your landings to feel much harder. Leaving the wake off balance makes it almost impossible to reach down and grab the board in different positions.
Think about bringing your elbows into your hips as you reach the top of the wake. This forces you to get your center of gravity over the board so that you can use the wake to go up. It also keeps the rope with you as you continue into the air.
Key: Identify your preferred hand
You will likely have a preference for letting go of the handle with either your front or back hand. For your first tries with grabbing, pick a style of grab that uses your preferred hand (see the Grab Index above). Once you figure out which hand you are more comfortable with, you can start with the easiest grabs for you.
Silent Coach: If you always grab with the same hand past your initial practices, you may be positioning your body improperly. Practice letting go with the less comfortable hand to break the invisible bad habits that cause this tendency; over time it will help to fix your approach, becoming easier and less awkward.
*The Silent Coach is an activity that tricks or forces you into practicing good riding habits