Posts Tagged ‘WBC’

Johnathan Martines: Learning to Instruct

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

For the past 3 years, I have been spending my summers and the majority of my school breaks training at the WBC. Each time I went down, it was basically the same routine. I would usually ski all day and help out around the ski school with whatever needed to be done. My duties would include simple chores around the house like taking out the trash, vacuuming, and packaging orders.

This year, however, a new part of my journey in barefooting began. I began learning to instruct other skiers. I started out by watching Ben and Ash instruct a number of different students. I paid attention to the way they interacted with the person in the water and how they adjusted their instructing style when the skier was not responding.

Eventually, I began to instruct a select few students with either Ash or Ben in the boat.

For me, this wasn’t very difficult. If I had a question about anything or was unsure of myself, I could ask Ash or Ben and get the answer immediately. I usually instructed skiers who were working on intermediate tricks like back toes, line one foots, and slalom.

After instructing with a more experienced instructor in the boat, the moment of truth came, it was my turn to take out some skiers on my own. For me, this was extremely intimidating. Being that I’m still a teenager, many of the people that I was instructing were older than me. I felt intimidated and unsure of myself. Eventually Swampy sat down and had a talk with me. He had heard from a skier that I seemed unsure of myself. Swampy told me to believe in myself and to be confident and vocal while instructing.

I took this advice and acted on it. I started being more confident in my instructing and acting like a leader while in the boat. I started noticing that the skiers responded much better to the instruction when I was confident in what I was telling them.

Beginning the journey of learning to instruct this summer was awesome. It gave me more self-confidence and forced me to be more responsible. I was no longer responsible for only my own skiing, but I was also responsible for how the skier I was instructing was skiing. Without the help of everyone at the WBC, I would never have had the opportunity to learn to instruct. I am still a beginner when it comes to instructing, and I look forward to becoming a much better instructor over the upcoming years.

Johnathan Martines

Life at the World Barefoot Center

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

Whether you’re brand new to barefoot water skiing or you’re an expert, we have a spot for you on the boat at the World Barefoot Center!

Here’s a peek inside a typical day at the WBC:

Workouts are optional.

World Barefoot Center Featured on Talizma

Sunday, April 20th, 2014

The World Barefoot Center crew is featured on Talizma, “Talent Worth Sharing”:

If You Love Water Sports Then This Video Will Thrill You to Core

More on WBC in the news:

WBC Featured in the News

Chris McWatters: Who’s the Best WBC Instructor?

Friday, April 18th, 2014

Over the last two years I have had the fortunate opportunity to ski with many different people from all over the world. One question that I have been asked multiple times is “who’s the best instructor?” Now this question has to be answered very carefully, because if it is not and the answer you give gets back to the crew, well the next ski set could become rather uncomfortable. Writing this article I feel like I am walking a thin line, but I am running out of material to write about, so I am going to try to tackle this obstacle.

Now the safest answer to this question is “they are all good” and that is true, all are very good. Of course the “all” being KSO, Smallz, Ben, Ash, and A.J. and let us not forget Swampy. This answer is pretty general and broad, and could be better defined. I can say that for the most part I have skied equal amounts between all of them with the exception of Swampy, but all the information about your skiing gets back to Swamp so it is like he is in the boat all the time.

It is important to mention that there are two different types of people in the boat. Sponsored skiers and students. Sponsored skiers are on a training schedule with a set regiment and are to do what you are told to do where students are there to square up basics or learn a few new things based on their skill level and wants. So, sponsored skiers and students are not instructed in the same fashion.

That being said, it brings me back to the question at hand. They are all very good at this sport, but being great at a sport and being able to share that knowledge don’t always go hand in hand. Fortunately for this crew, it does go hand in hand. They are great and they know how to share the knowledge. Whether you are student working on basics, or you are a sponsored skier working on more advanced items, all these guys and gal have a great eye and are able to spot what it is you are doing wrong. The real challenge is how can the instructors get you to do what it is that you want to learn with the least amount of pain and failure. Each of them are very successful at doing just that, and each have their own bags of tricks and ways of explaining every aspect of barefoot watersking to insure a positive learning experience at the world’s greatest barefoot training center.

I personally do not have one particular instructor I prefer over another, I think that they are all great and I enjoy skiing with each and everyone one of them. Yes, even with Swampy and that DAMN stop watch. They always have a way to get the best out of you. Well, maybe not right away but in short order. It is truly an honor to be a sponsored skier at the World Barefoot Center and I recommend to anyone, no matter the age, that has an interest in barefoot watersking whether it is for the first time, to square up the basics or advancing to the next level, call the WBC and join us here in Winterhaven, Florida for a wonderful experience and a chance to meet the best in the world.

Chris Mcwatters

Collin Barber: Barefooting with a Positive Mental Attitude

Saturday, January 11th, 2014
Displaying 20140111_122029.jpg

WBC Shoe Skis

You just finished a run on the shoe skis as the boat is on its way back to pick you up. Whether you were doing one foots, toe-holds, or turns, you managed to do the trick on the shoe skis without a problem. As the boat gets nearer and nearer, you hear the instructor tell you to take the shoe skis off and to do the exact same run but on your feet. As you start taking them off, the instructor looks at you and asks the inevitable question:

“What changes?”

Well… You could give the obvious answer of the fact that you are now skiing on your bare feet, which have less surface area than the shoe skis making the task harder and that you are now going to be skiing at a faster speed than before.

But you don’t give that answer. Instead, you respond with:

“Nothing changes.”

Why? Because it’s a mental game. If you gave the first answer, that shows you have uncertainty in yourself. If you have uncertainty in yourself, you’ll second guess your abilities. In turn, this will probably end up in struggling with the trick on your bare feet.

But if you answer with the mentality that absolutely nothing changes, you will probably struggle much less. You are telling yourself that if you can do it on shoe skis, you can do it on your bare feet too. You have confidence in yourself and with that confidence you are more likely to succeed with the task at hand.

So, am I telling you not to be scared of taking off those shoe skis? Well, in a sense, yes. But in reality, what I’m really trying to say is this:

PMA! Positive Mental Attitude!

By: Collin Barber

World Barefoot Center on Life Recharged

Monday, December 16th, 2013

Check out the World Barefoot Center on Life Recharged:

Female show with Karen Putz:

Male show with Keith St. Onge:

The Tommie Copper TV segment can also be found on cable. Check your cable station for local dates and times.

Ted Baber: Training at Keuka Lake

Tuesday, November 5th, 2013

Flying high during a training set

There was a training week held at Keuka lake, Fairford on the last week of July this year. It was put together by Jem Drew and Paul Turner, with help from Nick Lodge. It was a chance to bring the skiers closer together, and all throughout the week, there was a positive atmosphere. We spent 5 days training and working on different aspects everyday, based on what Paul saw individuals needed to work on, as well as overall new tricks. Charlie Long, Ben Edwards, Nick Lodge, Tom Heaps and Bibby Curtis spent the week camping down the lake. With the weather not holding up all week, it was a challenging to be there training, despite spending time during the rain hiding in the boat under the trees, we still managed to take advantage of the glass water. It was a great week, full of skiing, and being able to build up stronger friendships between the skiers.

By: Ted Baber

Ted Baber: British Nationals

Thursday, October 31st, 2013

The final British Nationals for 2013 was held at The Three Sisters Club in Wigan on a cold, cloudy September 7th. Never the less it didn’t put off the skiers to take to the water and show off what they have learnt throughout the season.

The first discipline was slalom, where the juniors showed great progression, demonstrating both back as well as front slalom. Charlie Long took out first place in the Junior Division. The Open class followed with myself and the other competitors skiing at our best. Only two competitors competed in the senior’s category, where Chris Coombs and Paul Turner took to the water. With Paul taking first place closely followed by Chris. Unfortunately afterwards the weather took a bad toll delaying the tricks event.

When the weather past over, all skiers showed great solid skiing. With the likes of Brad Beattie, Tom Heaps and Bibby Curtis demonstrating toe-holds and back one foots, but despite their efforts Charlie Long took first place in the juniors trick event as well. In the open class they showed similar solid displays, everybody skied well considering the conditions. Paul Turner secured first place in the seniors as well as second in the open class in the trick event.

Chris Coombs

In the jump event everyone took part from boom to long line, Charlie Long showing good inverts on the boom, again, gaining first place in the juniors. Paul and I were the only competitors jumping long line.


Overall Charlie Long took first place in the juniors, I took first place in the open class and Paul Turner took first in the seniors.

By: Ted Baber

Alex Youngblood: My Coaches

Sunday, October 27th, 2013

 

A lot of different coaches have taught me a lot of different stuff. Let’s start with Keith St. Onge, Ben Groen, and David Small. Keith, Ben, and David are my main coaches. They taught me my front toeholds and my back deep long line. They worked me really hard and it all paid off. I usually go to their ski school every spring now for about 2 weeks.

Another one of my coaches was Lane Bowers. He taught me my first back deep on the boom. One thing he told me to do, which I still do it to this day is to growl when you are in the motion of getting up. That helped me a lot. So, that back deep had a huge impact on my skiing.

Last but not least, Kenny Kaestner. He was the one who taught me my first front deep. We made a special deal. If I got the front deep with his help by October 1st, he said he would give me, my very own junior handle for free. I told him, it was a deal! After that I practiced and practiced and practiced. Finally the day came to do it. I tried and tried and tried, I wasn’t going to give up. I tried it one last time and on that that attempt, I did all the mechanics right…AND I GOT IT!!! I was extremely happy and flabbergasted! And I thank him for that.

So those are all my coaches who have gotten me to this point. They rock!

– Alex Youngblood

Ted Baber: Clinic in Sweden

Thursday, October 24th, 2013

At the end of June my friend Evert Aartsen Jr and I went to Sweden to run a barefoot clinic. We flew into Gothemberg and then drove 2 hours to a place called Bunn. The set up there was great! There was three boats, 2 were sangers and one was a flight craft. Also, the lake that the clinic was being held on was massive. It was split into three sections Bunn one, Bunn two and Bunn three, so we where able to find flat water all the time.

We had a total of 20 skiers at the clinic. 10 were young kids between the ages of 5 and 14 years old and the other 10 where adults. The clinic was held over three days. During our stay in Sweden we stayed in a little wooden cabin. Each cabin held three people. We were also provided with breakfast, lunch and dinner.

We split the 20 skiers into two groups. Evert taught the kids as he could speak Swedish and I taught the adults because they spoke fluent english. Everybody that I taught improved massively over the three days and they all gave us really positive feedback. It went so well that the Swedish barefoot group invited Evert & I back next year to run another clinic. We can’t wait!

By: Ted Baber