Archive for the ‘Barefooting Across America’ Category

Keith St. Onge on NBC News Iowa

Friday, July 1st, 2011

Keith St. Onge featured on NBC News in Iowa:

Waterhawks Welcome World Champion Barefoot Skier

WBC Footapalooza Figure 8 Series

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

This event sponsored by the World Barefoot Center & KSO Wetsuits was a success and a must “DO” for next year.  The site is amazing and there are huge fields for camping on Fri. and Sat. night.  The size of the eight is perfect with a perfectly protected site along with lily pads lining the shoreline. Put it on your calendars for next year!

Go to this link to read about it:  Footapalooza Figure 8

The event was also covered in the Herald Argus newspaper:  Footers Make Front Page

Keith St.Onge

Footers get FRONT PAGE!

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Lauren Lindeman makes a splash on the front page of the LaPorte, Indiana Herald Argus news:

Footapalooza Makes Front Page!

All “Betts” are on!

Monday, June 27th, 2011

Lauren and I arrive at the Anytime Fitness in Angola, IN to meet the owner, Mike Betts.  Mike and his wife Natalie sponsored our RV wrap with an Anytime Fitness logo so it was best to leave the motor home as a billboard since we get so much attention from it.  Just pulling into the parking got people’s attention!  We left there and stayed at the lake house during the three-day clinic.

We caught up with the Betts that evening and shared stories of being on the road for one month thus far.   We continue our conversations over diner at Timbuktoos, that is a local favorite.  They have an amazing and unique menu!

Lauren and I had just caught an REO Speedwagon concert a few days before.  Mike told us he sat next to the lead singer (Kevin Cronin) on the plane before and like always we say, “What a small world.”  Mike is originally from Australia and has a few Anytime Fitness gyms there as well.

The next day we finished early so Lauren and I played on Mike’s stand up Jet ski.  This is the only Jet ski I actually have a tolerance for.  I like the challenge compared to the sit down jet ski, which involves no effort to ride and provides no exercise whatsoever.  After Lauren and I had our competitions on who could turn to the left and right the fastest we parked it.  It was a toss up on who was champion.

Mike had his buddy Greg coming over the next morning with another local footer, Jeff.  We decided to start skiing at 6:30am to beat all the Wally’s out on the lake since it was Sat.  Mike started the crew off and he looked great.  I taught him the lazy boy position a few years back at the ski school and he was comfortable doing that.  The “Lazy Boy” is similar to reclining a Lazy Boy recliner while riding the butt.  The position is riding on the tailbone with the handle pulled in.  Knees and feet are squeezed together while knees are slightly bent.  Just think of the sitting V position in P90X and that is the “Lazy Boy.”  This position will help you do long butt slides at the end of your runs or get you in control before standing up.

After Mike’s feet got a little sore we moved onto backwards deep water starts on shoe skis.  He perfected that last year on shoe skis and was back for more.  He took a backwards fall last year that slightly injured his back so getting up wasn’t the problem but skiing away from the starts challenged him mentally.

Mike Betts Frontwards Barefooting

This was Greg’s first time learning a deep-water start since his early days of standing up off a kneeboard.  I went over the basics with him on dry land first and he adapted quite easily!  He was stoked to be standing without the aid of a kneeboard and had this smile that lasted all day.  I taught him the lazy boy as well and that kept him in control before standing, which I recommend.

Greg Smiling Ear to Ear!

Greg’s wife Elena came out for a set.  A few years ago Elena had tired barefoot waterskiing and had a bad fall the first time, like many this shyed her away from the sport until now.  First try and look at her go!

Elena Female Footer! Yay!

Greg and Elena brought there very own little cheerleader! Rosie will be getting her feet wet soon!

Soon to be Barefooter


Jeff was the guy that was self-taught and I could tell.  Straight legged and rough on the starts but after a few pointers and tricks of the trade I could tell I made his life a little easier and more enjoyable! Jeff got up on his second attempt backwards on his feet!  He never thought he would ever go backwards but with a little push from me and the aid of thewaterproof  HeadZone helmet he learned it quickly!

Barefooting on the Boom

I ran into an old time friend and student that morning named Randy Strebig.  He joined in the clinic on a last minute invite and since the wind had started to blow quite hard he invited us all out to a private lake in the area.  Randy is a wild man that likes to live on the edge and after he let me look him over he wanted to do surface turns.  I corrected his position and he began to turn easily.  Towards the end he took a few falls and I explained to him that his head and shoulders were turning before his hips and feet.  Everything must turn as one unit.  I had heard Randy competes in ballroom dancing and he brought up a good point just as I was going to make fun of him.  He said they are taught to turn their head last, called spotting.  They turn their head last so they can focus on one point to prevent dizziness as well as stopping the twisting motion.  So, he tried to keep looking backwards when he did his back to front and it helped out tremendously!

Barefoot Clinic

Greg and Mike took one more set a piece and had fun on the private lake.  It’s always nice not having to worry about other boats or competing for calm shorelines.

Natalie barefoot water skied in the clinic last year but just got eye surgery and could not play.  We hope to meet up with her later this summer so we can get her on her feet!

Lauren and I were able to get a few runs in as well.  I just did a little showing off but Lauren nailed another toe up start on the ten foot extension so she was happy!

It was a fabulous three day clinic, great skiers and great fun! Thank you to all who participated.

By: Keith St.Onge

Anytime Fitness Captain Running Man

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011
Captain Running Man hits his barefeet in Angola, IN.  This is the first time we have ever seen Captain Running Man Barefoot Waterski, look at those muscles!!

Getting ready to Barefoot Water-ski

There he is…. Captian Running Man!
Captian Running Man
Barefooter Waterskiing Running Man!
Captian Running Man-Keith St. Onge

Anytime Fitness Tour Hit’s up Angola, Indiana

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

Angola, Indiana

For the 2nd year in a row we stopped in Angola and skied with a fun group of skiers.  First up Brian McMillian you may know him as buckhead he is the organizer for the Buckethead Race held in Indiana.  Brian worked on backwards one foot one hands and accomplished a few back toe holds.  Surface turns are in Brian’s future, keep working position on the shoes.

Working on the Surface Turns

 Last year we had the pleasure of teaching Brian’s wife Cara Mcmillian to barefoot on the boom her smile was priceless.  This year we missed Cara but we congratulate this couple and wish them the best at starting a family!

Ben Morgan had an injury the first year we did a clinic.  Finally we were able to see his skills on the water.  Ben has a natural abilty and nice positioning on the water. A first for Ben this week was a front to back on the WBC shoe skis.  Nice job!

Back one foot one hand!

Ben’s lovely better half Audra Morgan also skied the clinic.  Audra has been working on her front toe holds and they are coming along.  Her new trick is soon to be a back one foot on her bare feet! 

Determined!!! We love that!

Front One Foot

 Ben’s younger brother Chris Morgan came out to join us for the day.  Chris worked his front one foots and tumbles and with just a few tips for his backwards barefooting form and all will be smooth:)

Front Ones on Trainers

 Keith Farmer has been an avid footer for years.  Keith worked on his back one foot one hands!

O Yeah!

Dan Melton and his daughter came out to watch for a bit.  Next year we hope to see you both out there getting your feet wet.  Thank you all for participating we enjoy seeing you and your progress.

KSO Barefooting Across America-PA

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

A little lake outside of Utica, PA is where the clinic was based.  The Ebbert’s have a wonderful set up for barefooting.  Cottages and trailers are parked along the shore close to the waters edge, boat lifts and docks are set up and the barefoot jump ramp is snuggled in for a great view.  The weather conditions were not the best but we were still able to get alot accomplished. Jumping was the main focus for Greg and Cody Ebbert.  The main goal is smoother landings behind the boat, just a few bad habits need to be worked out and it will be smooth sailing:) Getting ready for competiton this summer Diane Schaupp worked her line step postition behind the boat!! Awesome!  Geoff Hust is a solid skier, and worked his back cutouts on shoes and backwards line step postion and many hops down the lake.   Josh Heckman was having some troubles with his back to front and with just a little bit of instruction he was turning like nobody elses business! Tom Chatham has just begun his jumping career.  He worked on his positioning going over the jump on shoe skis on the 5ft rope.  Thank you to Lisa Ebbert and other ladies that provided wonderful meals for us!  They were delicious! Kyle Ebbert has a new found hobby is editing videos! Its awesome, check it out! Skiing with KSO Video

Group Shot

Thank you for a great clinic we look forward to spending more time with you!

Footin’ on Oxbow

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

Oxbow Waterski Show Team

Near Northampton, MA

Many moons ago my father, Swampy and I used to travel South on highway 91 from Northern New Hampshire towards the tournaments being held in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Connecticut.  On our road trip we always passed a show ski site in Massachusetts.  We could see a ski jump and a site set up for skiing.  My head glued to the window, I always hoped we would see people skiing since we never stopped.  I told my dad I was doing a clinic for the Oxbow show ski team this year and he reminded me that was the same site we always drove past.  It feels great to be doing a clinic in New England at a site we always drove by.  I finally got to stop for a while, and see what this team was all about.

June 8th was the first day of the clinic organized by Taylor Whitcomb.  We met Taylor and his side kick Steve Bouchard at the World Barefoot Center last year.  They came down to our WBC Figure 8 tournament to have a little fun and participate.  Taylor learn how to barefoot ski when he was a teenager.  Soon afterwards he attended college and focused on his career.  He did not touch the water for fifteen years and he is finally back on his feet.  He is more eager to learn as much as he can for the years to come.

Back Toe Hold- Talyor Whitcomb

Steve Bouchard is extremely passionate for the sport and tough as nails!  His attitude is “Go hard or Go home” and I respect him for that.  Since skiing at the WBC he has come a long way and knows that correct path to take when foot’n.

Front Toe Hold- Steve Bouchard

Watch out everyone! Steve’s son Andre Bouchard 10 years old is learning FAST!  Andre did a front one foot for the first time and a toe hold on the WBC shoe skis!  With Andre’s enthusiasm he will be getting up backwards in the next few weeks. Way to go buddy!

The Showman! -Andre Bouchard

Andre Working the Backdeep Start

Chris Fernandez was part of our crew and he is getting the desire to get back on the horse as well.  Chris worked for Mike Seipel in 1994-1996, learned a few turns, jumped inverted and could do a front flip.  Barefooting runs through some of our veins and he is definately one of them!  He missed the sport so much he plans on competing again this year.

Front Slalom- Chris Fernandez

Andy Grey got up behind the boat for the first time today and dispite a few rough falls he did not complain once!  Job well done buddy and I hope to see you foot’n in the barefoot line soon!  Andy is on a show ski team just outside of Springfield MA.

Andy

Tweleve year old Josh Alexander completed his first deep water start on the boom today.  We warmed him up in the swing first and made sure he was comfortable before taking the next step.  Josh did fantastic and we hope to see him getting his feet wet more and more this summer.

Josh Footin'!

It’s a difficult task but Gary Magoon made it look simple.  We congratulate Gary on getting up backwards on the WBC shoe skis for the first time!  We look forward to seeing you in Florida.

Clay Duda is an avid all around skier.  Clay came to understand the difference between a step over and step under surface turn this week.  Practicing the step over will surely make his turns consistent.  We are excited to annouce that we have another huge fan of the WBC shoe skis.  These specific shoe skis are made like no other and are a great learning tool.

A local footer that has been basically self taught for years Jesse Reilly, now footed with World Champion Keith St. Onge.  Jesse has done well over the years and he achieved his first back toe hold!

Back Toe Hold

Dale Thouin is a solid frontwards barefooter.  In one afternoon Dale was skiing away from a backdeep on shoes!  That is a huge accomplishment, we are proud of you!

Have you ever known a baerfooter that refuses to go forward?  Sarah Brittian is has a dislike for foward barefooting but absolutely loves to backwards barefoot.  Funny thing!! Sarah’s goal was to learn back one foots.  Sarah did so well at the back one foots she moved on to back one foot on hands and even a back toe hold!  Sarah did a fabulous job on the barefoot shoes leaning the technique. Take a peak!

"I can't believe I did that!"- Sarah

Sarah's Back Toehold!!!

Becci Ziemba had barefooted a little bit on the boom prior to the clinic.  With some help from her showskiing background Becci did awesome and accomplished a front deep water on the 5ft leader rope.  Wooo Hooo!

Beautiful Becci

Becci on the 5ft!!! Yahoooo!

Sister of Becci, Cassandra Ziemba also came out to do a little footin’.  Cassandra had some experience barefooting, we cleaned up her form and made the whole experience smooth.  Way to go Cassandra!

Pretty Footer- Cassy

Smooth and incontrol- Cassy

Fairly new to the sport Rosie Haynes came out for an afternoon to do some footing.  Rosie did just that, and accomplished barefooting on the boom!  Keep working it girl!

Rosie Barefooting on the boom!

Fiona MacNeill enjoyed the feeling of her feet gliding arcoss the water.  Finoa had a great time learning the barefoot swing.  Just a little practice for comfort and Finoa is ready for the boom.

Finoa Footing!!

Bridget MacNeill had a huge show ski smile on her face when she was BARE footing across the lake!  The next step is to take away the swing and move onto the boom.

Ready for a ride!

Hey ladies we are looking forward to hearing about you barefooting the the ski shows!  Also we would like to invite you to the Women’s Week event we put on at the World Barefoot Center.  It’s a blast!  Only female footers allowed, its pressure free, everyone is full of encouragement and lots of laughs will be had!

Ski Fest is a fun get together when all the waterski show teams in New England camp out, ski, party and have mini clinics.  We are grateful to be a part of this water ski event.  Meeting skiers from all over the US is exciting and being able to teach them makes my day:)

Blowouts and Falls

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

Lauren and I left the Oxbow Show Ski site on Sat. morning around 11:30am to head towards Niagra Falls for a few days of rest.  We knew we had a seven hour drive so we hoped to make it there Sat. evening so we could enjoy the falls all day on Sun. About five hours into our drive and as Lauren was driving we had a tire blowout!  Lauren freaked out as anyone would and within a few seconds she gained calmness and slowly pulled over to the shoulder.   As I began the process of getting out the lug nut wrench and so forth a off duty police officer stopped and asked us if we needed a hand.  He quickly asked us questions about our wrapped RV and what we do.  We explained to him we barefoot water ski and he instantly knew footers in the area.  I changed the flat in just over an hour.  Wow, those RV wheels have many lug nuts! Haha.

We arrived in Niagra Falls around 8:30pm and started walking towards the park in hopes to see the falls while it was still light out.  We were told by many to go to the Canadian side.  With passports in hand we did exactly that.  We walked over the massive bridge over Niagra River and entered Canada.  I told Lauren I would take her out for a nice dinner because we had deserved it. We were taken back by the beautiful site of the falls and an old lady told us the falls would be lit up from 9pm till midnight.  Lauren and I headed towards the huge tower where we were told to go.  We missed the fine dining by 15 min. but ended up looking over the falls as we ate dinner at the casino on the bank of the river. We got back to our house on wheels around 12:30pm and looked forward to sleeping in.  We woke up and proceeded to visit the falls on the American side and walked several miles around the gorgeous state park preserved for the public.

Bath Time, for the Anytime Fitness National Barefoot Tour Bus!

Sunday, June 12th, 2011

It was HOT!  What better to do in the afternoon than to give the RV a little scrub down.  Just before we left Spencer, Mass we put in a little bit of elbow grease into the tour bus. 

Scruba Dub Dub

We waved goodbye from a sqeaky clean rig!