Skim boarding is a fairly new sport that is becoming increasingly popular throughout the world. It is essentially a sport that is based on the concept of hydroplaning, which is gliding over a thin layer of water. It is similar to surfing, however, the difference is that skimming occurs by the shore and can be performed with waves or none at all.
The first thing you need to know is that there are two types of skimming – flatland or sand skimming and wave skimming. Flatland skimming can be performed in lakes, on the beach, or anywhere a thin layer of water is available to skim on. Wave skimming consists of riding waves that break along the shore of the beach. This is more challenging and takes a lot of practice, but I assure you it is an immense amount of fun.
Secondly, how to properly hold your board is crucial to begin skimming. You want to place one hand on the back or tail of the board and place the other hand on the side of the board normally halfway or three-quarters of the way up on the board.
Another important thing to know is the right time to jump on your board and go. You want to wait for a wave that breaks on shore and allows a thin layer of water to move up the beach. Then you go as soon as the thin layer of water begins to recede. Remember to go only when you feel comfortable, because if not you might injure yourself.
The next step is how to throw the board and get on it. It is one of the most critical steps. First, begin running to gain speed. Second, drop the board in front of your feet. Third, try to make a smooth transition on to your board by running on to it in order to effectively transfer your speed to the board. Lastly, enjoy the slide or ride. Some tips and things to remember are, make sure to always run first before dropping your board if you want your ride to be longer, because the speed comes from your running and you want to efficiently transfer that momentum to your board. Furthermore, be careful to not make the mistake of throwing your board far out in front of you. You will see many beginners do this and this is incorrect because you don’t get that much speed or go very far either. Plus you don’t want to be chasing your board; you want to be riding it!
Once you have conquered these steps, you can begin attempting tricks such as spins, shove-its, and sprays. You can also try to ride waves which require the same procedure as flatland or sand-skimming, however with a few additional steps. When wave riding, you essentially want to go at an oncoming wave (before it breaks), and when you approach it, turn your hips and try to slice off the top of the wave in order to change your direction and allow the wave carry you back in to shore or down the beach. Note that this can be extremely difficult if you’re just starting out and it depends on wave and weather conditions which vary daily. Some wave and weather factors that effect wave riding are how fast and which way is the wind blowing, which way are the waves going, how big are the waves, how are the waves breaking, and are they reachable or not. Those are some things to keep in mind when attempting to ride waves.
Remember that all this takes an enormous amount of practice, and being in shape also helps because it is a physically demanding sport. I guarantee you will fall about a million times before you will be able to ride waves, but that’s the best way of learning -through experience. Don’t worry, even professional skimmers fall. Falling is just part of the sport, so don’t give up and get out there and skim! Skim boarding is another great water sport that is without a doubt challenging but also very exhilarating.