kicker at cablepark

How to Hit a Kicker at a Cable Park

How to Hit a Kicker at a Cable Park

Some of the most fun you can have at Ski Rixen Cable Park is hitting kickers. What are kickers, you ask? They’re ramps you can boot off of to get air. Why get air, you ask? To do tricks! Some of our more advanced athletes at Ski Rixen can do world-class tricks that are almost unbelievable. And everyone has to start somewhere, so here are a few quick pointers on hitting kickers at America’s first-ever cable park: Ski Rixen in Deerfield Beach, FL.

How to Hit a Kicker at a Cable Park — The Setup

Before you consider hitting your first kicker, it’s important to have a solid riding foundation. When you’ve moved out of the beginner phase, you should be able to carve around, control your board through the cable’s corners and have decent control of the handle. Your board is going to be leaving the water, so that presents a different level of difficulty you may not be used to. It’s important to prepare as much you can and take the necessary steps to safely hit the ramp. The most important part of this equation is having a well-fitting helmet that’s secured to your head with a strap that’s adjusted to fit you. The helmet should be snug, but not tight, and it shouldn’t be able to move around on your head.


How to Hit a Kicker at a Cable Park — The Approach

The approach to a kicker is one of the most important parts of the process, so let’s go into it in depth. The material that covers a kicker or slider is really slippery so your board can slide on it, which means your edges don’t dig in like they do on the water. For this reason, you need to be off your edge when you hit the kicker or your board will slide out. Practice without the obstacle at first. Edge out on your heel or toeside, depending on your stance and which side the kicker is on, and practice coming off your edge at the speed you want to hit the kicker. How hard you edge will determine how much speed you have going into the kicker, so visualize coming up to it as you’re edging out. When in doubt, slow it down and just roll over the kicker. Or you can even take an angle that lets you hit the front corner of the kicker. There’s no shame in starting small. When you’re ready, take this same approach into the smallest kicker at Ski Rixen and concentrate on bending your knees and keeping your handle close to your waist.


How to Hit a Kicker at a Cable Park — On the Ramp

Come off your edge just before the kicker and absorb the ramp with your knees. Don’t try to push off at first, just think about leaning back a bit to keep your board’s tip above the water and controlling your handle so stay oriented in the air. The tendency will be to let the handle pull you so your toeside edge is forward, so keep the handle at your leading hip to avoid that. A lot of beginners will let go of the handle after they leave the ramp as well, and there’s nothing wrong with that. There’s a lot going on when you hit a kicker the first time, so eliminating the variable of the handle is not a bad thing.


How to Hit a Kicker at a Cable Park — The Landing

When you come down, make sure you absorb the landing with your knees. If you kept your handle close to your leading hip and the nose of your board up, you should be ready for a clean ride away and another lap to try again.


When you get more comfortable with kickers, you can try a 180, a 360 or even a flip. Be sure to check out our article on how to hit rails at a cable park as well. The sky’s the limit with kickers, and tricks are only limited by your imagination, so come out and experience your first wakeboard kicker at Ski Rixen in Deerfield Beach, FL! Give us a call or come on out!