Water Ski is one of the extreme water sports played on the surface of water. It demands physical power, endurance, and careful attention of the skier. It is not a sport that you will learn in a few minutes and will jump to the water the next moment. Rigorous practice and training is required before you get a grip on the game.
Ralph Samuelson is regarded as the inventor of Water Ski. He first performed skiing on the Pepin Lake in Minnesota. Back then, the water bodies were mainly used for commutation and transportation. Ralph kept on trying various positions for various days.
Ralph also noticed that leaning slightly backward while skiing can give his ski’s tip an upward movement and keeping the ski’s tip out of the water was good. With his brother Ben, Ralph successfully achieved the speed of 32 kmph.
The American Water Ski Association formally acknowledged Samuelson in 1966 as the first recorded water skier in history.
Pope Dick Sr., the father and promoter of water skiing, attracted international attention towards this extreme sport during 1940 to 1950. He also competed first jump of 25 feet on water skis.
During those times, the ski ropes were made up of long window sash. World’s first patent ski was made by Fred Waller in 1925, marked as Dolphin Akwa Skees. A finless shorter water ski was patented for the first time in 1940 by Jack Andresen.
The objective here is to ski on a water surface with the help of water skis. The skier holds the handle of the rope that is fixed on the backside of a boat.
The driver of the motorboat accelerates the boat into water while the skier has to hold balance on the water surface by standing on the skis. The observer sitting as a co-driver keeps watch on potential dangers and progress of the game. This sport is played in coordination of the skier, the boat driver, and the observer.
A regulating body named The International Water ski and Wakeboard Federation (IWWF) organizes Water Skiing game competitions worldwide. It is also recognized as the official partner in Water Skiing by the Olympic committee.
American Water Ski Association (AWSA) was formed and organized the first U.S. national water-ski championships. Later, AWSA changed its name to USA Water Ski when the organization became a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee.
Yet another regulating body from Australia, The Western Australian Water Ski Association (WAWSA) works to promote water skiing sport, to increase the number of water skiing areas, and to promote the various divisions of Water Skiing - Barefoot, Disabled, Tournament, Show Skiing, and Wakeboarding.