The majority of these extreme sports, including surfing, bodyboarding, skating, skimboarding, snowboarding, and wakeboarding, are often performed outside. However, flowriding is an inside variation on these sports. On a 14-wheel skateboard, players engage in the indoor sport of flowriding.
Flowriding or Flowboarding is a late-20th century alternative board sport combine elements of surfing, bodyboarding, skateboarding, skimboarding, snowboarding and wakeboarding.
Although it is comparable to surfing, flowriding uses a somewhat different approach. For balance, you’ll need to maintain your weight on the back foot rather than the front.
King Ludwig of Bavaria created the first man-made waves in a pool back in the 19th century, but they required a totally different kind of technology than flowriding does today. The sport of flowriding is closely related to the “FlowRider,” a device invented by Tom Lochtefeld, inventor of Wave Loch, that shoots water at speeds between 32 and 48 kilometers per hour on a cushioned, sloped surface.
In 1987, Lochtefeld was impressed to make this technology once he discovered waters on the face of it flowing up a wave in La Jolla. It appeared that the wave was travel backward. A second inspiration came to him once he saw surfers ride shallow waves while not touching the sea bottom. The upward motion of water through a shallow wave then became the essence of the Flowrider, shooting a skinny sheet of water up a sickle-shaped surface. To good this style, Lochtefeld employed Carl Ekstrom, identified for his board styles, to make the right, easy-to-ride, continuous waves. once multiple trials on miniature FlowRiders, within the Eighties, Lochtefeld started testing a FlowRider model at Raging Waters water parks. In 1991, the primary FlowRider machine was with success put in at The Schlitterbahn in New Braunfels, Texas. together with this success, a replacement kind of FlowRider, the “FlowBarrel” was undraped at Summerland Resort, in Bø, Norge in 1993 and received instant quality.
In order to develop the first mobile FlowBarrel, which was created especially for a promotional tour, Lochtefeld obtained a contract and funding from Swatch in 1999. Bill Bryan won the first contest, which was held in Munich, Germany, and was awarded the prize. In the year 2000, 25 FlowRiders were on the market in nations like Mexico, Japan, South Korea, and Germany.
The first Wave House venue opened its doors in 2001 in Durban, South Africa, and served as a model for subsequent Wave House locations. The Royal Caribbean cruise ship Freedom of the Seas added a FlowRider for the first time on its deck in 2006. From that point forward, FlowRiders are installed on the sports deck of every Royal Caribbean ship. In total, more than 200 FlowRiders were offered throughout 35 different countries in 2015.
Although there are seven other kinds of sheet waves that can be utilized for flowriding, the FlowRider Single and Double and the FlowBarrel are the two basic wave structures that are accepted at a competition level.
The technology developed by FlowRider, Inc. enables the simulation of many ocean wave types. The only company that created a product that is now on the market is this one. The gadgets initially had the ability to simulate breaking waves. A wave that breaks has an amplitude that has reached the point at which the wave energy is converted into strong kinetic energy.
Body boarders and surfers alike are drawn to the breaking wave simulation. The surfers typically descend downward as the wave advances, though they can also move relative to the wave and perform specific maneuvers. Flowriders may perform simple to complex twists and tricks in a relatively short space and gain speed from the energy of the water flowing at them. The FlowRider machine’s curved surface mimics the actual curvature of a wave, and the curvature varies over the surface to create a more realistic wave. The water is then pumped up the curved surface from the bottom.
These strong pumps propel a layer of water measuring 7.5 cm (3 in) thick at rates between 10 and 15 m/s (35 to 55 km/h; 20 to 35 mph). The water being pushed along the surface of the FlowRider at a considerably faster rate than an actual wave is the main distinction between the machine and an actual ocean wave. Finally, a vacuum prevents the riders from dangerously skipping on the water’s surface.
A rider can select between two different types of boards in this sport. The bodyboard and the flowboard are these.
In flowriding, the flowboard is often referred to as the “stand-up board.” The shape, composition, length, and angle of the board’s curve all vary. They can be further divided into strapped and strapless boards and typically resemble wakeboards in appearance. Only the FlowBarrel typically uses footstrapped boards, while the FlowRider and FlowBarrel both use strapless boards. Flowboards are available in lengths between 90 and 110 cm (35 and 43 in) and widths between 28 and 35 cm (11 to 14 in). They are 1.4 to 2.8 kg in weight (3 to 6 lb).
Bodyboarders use normal bodyboards while lying on their backs, kneeling, or dropping to one knee. Every position serves as the foundation for a unique set of maneuvers. Bodyboarders are typically asked to do tricks while lying flat on their backs as well as while crouching down.
Flowriding League of the World (FLOW)
The primary competitive league for flowriders is the Flowriding League of the World (FLOW), which was founded in the early 2000s. The world tour of FLOW is divided into separate itineraries for the United States, Europe, Asia, and Canada. In order to give participants the chance to accumulate enough points to qualify for the World Flowboarding Championships, FLOW arranges multiple tour stops in each of these regions (WFC).
World Flowboarding Championships (WFC)
The WFC is held at a different Wave House throughout the world each year by FLOW. Punta Cana in South Korea (2019), the Dominican Republic (2018), Mexico (2017), and Singapore have been popular destinations in recent years (2016). There are two events in the WFC, one on the FlowRider wave and the other on the FlowBarrel wave. Finding two male flowboarders, one female flowboarder, and one bodyboarder to represent each Wave House’s part of the world is their responsibility.
Requirements for Flowriding
Anybody in decent physical condition can ride a flowrider. It requires a lot of effort. The ability to swim in rapidly moving, choppy water is a need. Participants are required to be in good physical condition and without any physical restrictions. Women who are pregnant and anybody with a history of heart, back, neck, shoulder, or joint issues shouldn’t take part. Please speak with an instructor if you have any particular worries about your physical condition.
For the Flowrider experience, you must be at least 42″ tall to bodyboard and 52″ tall to flowboard. Children quickly take up new abilities. Children who ride must be able to swim in rapidly moving water and follow the instructor’s instructions. Swimsuits are required, and riders must be barefoot. Bathing suit tops, bottoms, and loose apparel could be yanked off by the gushing water. All female competitors are highly encouraged to wear surf shirts.
Flowriding Safety Measures
Don’t dive because it’s not a pool, keep that in mind. A sheet of water is flowing through at 40 mph, but because it is just about an inch (3 cm) high on the vinyl surface, it doesn’t do much to cushion your fall. Falling on the Flowrider doesn’t hurt much because the surface is kind of springy like a trampoline.
Put your hands on your chest or, even better, around your head when you fall, and attempt to land on your buttocks if at all possible. In order to prevent injury, simply attempt to keep your limps close to your body.
The water flow will press you up against the back of the Flowrider as soon as you touch down on the rubber surface. Given how strong the water flow is, it’s typical to feel “out of control.” Just relax and maintain the safety stance until you come to a complete stop. Injury risks decrease when you adapt to the situation more.
The fact that Flowriding or Flowboarding is an indoor activity rather than an ocean sport distinguishes it from other board sports. The waves are man-made, referred to as sheet waves, and were developed by Tom Lochtefeld and patented by Wave Loch Inc.
There are many factors that can affect surfing in the ocean, including rips, tides, ground swell, wind swell, sharks, reefs, and shifting sandbanks. In other words, learning how to ride a surfboard and knowing the ocean environment both take a lot of time.
Flowriding has the advantages of predictability and security. You might not even be able to catch a wave in the ocean if you’re surfing with people who are more skilled than you or in a busy region. Man-made waves are managed to ensure that each surfer receives a fair share of waves.
A surfer can hone their abilities while flowriding in a safe, controlled setting. For surfers, they resemble half pipes. Man-made waves will undoubtedly raise the bar for performance, particularly for aerial exploits, as they become more effective at producing stronger, “punchier” waves.