Win a Barefoot Book–We Have a Winner!

“If you call yourself a barefoot waterskier, this book needs to be in your library. Karen has hit all the bases with all the big shots of the sport.”

Barefoot Water Skiing, From Weekend Warrior to Competitor written by Karen Putz covers the basics of barefoot water ski tournaments.  The book features “My First Tournament” memories from current as well as past competitors, including Keith St. Onge, David Small, Mike Seipel, Ron Scarpa, William Farrell, Paul Stokes, Ben Groen, Ashleigh Stebbeings, A.J. Porreca and more.

If you’ve always been curious about barefoot tournaments but never thought you were good enough to enter one, this book will dispel the fears and equip you with the knowledge you need to enter your first tournament.

To enter the drawing for a free copy of the book, leave a comment below telling us about your most memorable faceplant.  What’s the footin’ tumble into the water you’ll never forget?

The comments will remain open until Friday, September 28, 2012 and the winner will be chosen by

And the results are:

List Randomizer

There were 9 items in your list. Here they are in random order:

  1. James Melter
  2. Carlos Barreto
  3. Chandler Cargile
  4. Warren Hubert
  5. Johnathan Martines
  6. Dan Tanis
  7. Randal Meikle
  8. Shellie Blum
  9. Paul Stokes

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12 Responses to “Win a Barefoot Book–We Have a Winner!”

  1. shellie blum says:

    i was always an A to B barefoot skier, meaning a show barefooter does everything any anything they can not to fall and make it to the stage, my feet apart WIDE stance is proof of that, i never really had any bad face plants, but one time when i was teaching my girlfriend how to barefoot ski back when the boom hadn’t been invented, and we hadn’t figure out using a kneeboard was easier, we learned by stepping off a ski, on her first try stepping off a slalom, she took a faceplant so hard it really scared me, i brought the boat back really quick, and her eyes were tearing up, as i watched the tears fall down her cheeks i noticed the tear drops were pinkish red, it dawned on me her eyes were bleeding, not a lot, but just enough to really scare me, i was 18, she was maybe 17, i never said a word, i kept asking her if she wanted to quit , she said no, she learned to barefoot that day, i never told a soul about her bleeding eyes, i just bragged to everyone she had learned to barefoot! she was okay, she never knew, i never told her, about her bleeding eyes!

  2. Chandler Cargile says:

    One of my hardest falls barefooting was this summer when I was jumping one afternoon. It was right after dinner one night and jumping was Ted, Georgia, Ben, A.J., Ash and myself. Swampy was in a boat next to the jump instructing us. A.J. was pulling us and Ted had just jumped. I was next and I took one jump and Swampy told me to raise on the ramp. Then, as I was coming into the ramp for my second jump, I was thinking about just raising up the ramp. I’m not too sure what happened, but it didn’t go as I had planned it. As soon as I went into the air, one of my hands had slipped off the handle. For some reason, I tried to grab it and get it back but I completely missed it and with me still holding on with one hand, it shot me down face first into the water. It stung the side of my face and my forehead so bad. I was so confused on what happened, but as soon as I got my breath back, I had this feeling I was about to get yelled at by Swampy. Instead I look over and he was just standing on the front of the boat laughing. It was funny after, but it hurt pretty bad. It was extremely embarrassing as well because they all were laughing. Its funny now!!

  3. Warren Herbert says:

    Generally, the last one is the most relevant to me….they tend to have a little more effect the more “experianced” we get…but a recent fav was at the 2010 NZ nationals, I have just sorted the toe start out again, had that nice and solid and was pretty keen on hitting a 2000+ trick run. Come into the course, stood up a sweet toe up, crossed the wake to get to my preferred side, and splat……had the ride of shame to the far end with stars and comets dancing across the vision, then to nail my back run and score around 1600…..

  4. Johnathan Martines says:

    One of the hardest falls I’ve taken happened during site familiarization before this worlds. I was doing a 540 to the front at the end of my back run. On the first front to back, I let my handle out, and i took a headpacker out of nowhere. My feet swept behind me. I landed straight on my back, hurting my head, knocking the wind out of me, and making my right arm get pins and needles. Skied my next run out. Felt like crap for the rest of the day lol.

  5. My Hardest fall was the one that made me realise that a little technique goes a long way. Early morning session out on the longline, pulled out on the glass hard to the right, saw a crowd and went to one foot and wave… nek minnitt.. im cartwheeling with two hard head slaps inbetween. Concussion and two months of Chiro, to realign neck, back, hips, gave some time for thought.. and technique was revised somewhat :-).. oh and the crowd they clapped…

  6. World Barefoot Center says:

    We’re trying not to laugh at these painful faceplants, but keep ’em coming!

  7. Paul Stokes says:

    I will never forget what I recall as my hardest (non-jumping) barefoot crash. I was just getting to the back on a line step when my heals caught. I experienced something that I had never felt before. When my head hit the water, the water grabbed my head and drove me towards the bottom of the lake. My breath was knocked out, my back did the dreadful “scorpion”, and my eyelids were pealed back. I don’t remember there being any lasting affects from that fall. I do remember shaking it off and going for that trick again right away and being successful. Unless you are really hurt, I think it’s crucial to get back after it. You don’t want to end a set on a bad note if you can help it. Even doing a cruiser run with some basics is better than getting in after a crash. The last 10 years I’ve been on a no fall diet. I avoid crashing as much as possible. Quality over quantity and never lose focus.

  8. Carlos Barreto says:

    OK well it wasn’t a face plant but I will never forget when I was doing some back wakes and my wife was pulling me, as I was crossing the wake I caught a heel and the boat pulled me out the back door so hard that it dislocated my shoulder. When I came up from the fall I remember it felt like my arm was hanging just by my skin ( good thing for 10mm flotation) anyway my wife had to come around and grab me by the back of my suit and drag me in the boat, then drive my boat back to the docks, run up to the trailer, back the trailer in, and rush off to the hospital, me in the back seat and boat trailing behind. Once at the hospital they told me they would have to cut my suit off and I said no way the suit cost me 300.00 I’m already in pain if can’t hurt any more so they did……………….. OUCH…………. (if that’s not the love of the sport I don’t know what is) but a few month later I climbed right back on that horse (all 454 of them) and went back after it, and 15 years later here I am and I still love the thrill of back barefooting today.

  9. James Melter says:

    So many hard falls but three good ones that I’ll remember forever:

    Near the end of last summer 2011 on the 5ft line on the boom for a last pass of the morning I performed an awesome dolphin start to feet on the boom, up to 40MPH and turned to the right for a nice side slide. Cool, but only for a few seconds before my left foot caught and, with me hanging on, my feet flew behind me ala superman style until my head did a human torpedo into the water and was instantly pinned to my chest. I was wearing my BFC neckbrace but I heard a few creaks and pops before letting go of the handle. I floated there in the water in more pain than I have ever felt in my life while the boat trolled up next to me. Two people in the boat, Nate and my girlfriend, Robyn, started asking me if I was alright but all I could do was float there in pain. I finally managed to eek out, “Ow, it hurts so bad…please don’t talk to me or move me and just let me float here awhile”. Finally after what seemed like 15 minutes maybe, I floated to the back of the boat and was able to lift myself into Nate’s outboard Mastercraft, in more pain than I’ve ever felt (thank God I have strong arms and body to lift myself easily because I think if anyone had moved me the wrong way, I may have struck them involuntarily, just due to the sharp pain whenever I moved myself the wrong way). I believe I took another frontwards pass and just skied, no tricks, just to feel better about the world. When we finally got back to my truck, Robyn insisted I go to the emergency room. I was pretty sure I didn’t snap anything so I told her that if I could get dressed and change out of my wet clothes by myself, that I was not going to the hospital. (I didn’t want to get a huge bill just for pulled muscles). It was the most difficult time I’ve ever had getting undressed and dressed into dry clothes, but I managed it, so I drove us home. It was a workday but Robyn insisted I call in sick. Since I’m always prepared with first aid and painkillers right in the truck, I popped 4 Advil and reluctantly agreed to stay home and take it easy. I called in sick, drove home and iced my neck on and off all day while laying on the couch contemplating my existence. This is the third time I’ve had a fall of this type. I think I skied just a few short days later but didn’t do anything beyond 4 ones and toes on the boom. A week later though I was back to skiing just like usual with just a bad ache in my neck. For forwards falls I believe that a neckbrace can actually cause you a worse fall and more neck damage because you cannot tuck your head forward as much prior to hitting the water. The neckbrace seems to cause more likelihood of a face-plant and scorpion fall and also more damage when your head does get pinned to your chest by water pressure, if you are dragged. This is because the neckbrace actually puts a fulcrum in the front middle of your neck which can stretch your rear neck muscles much more than they would if you weren’t wearing it (this is just a theory though). That said, I believe a neckbrace can save your life on backwards falls. Really the best lesson to learn from this story is: Always let go of the rope when you fall! It was only a split second that I actually held the rope when I fell, but that is all it took to render me nearly lifeless.

    Got this one on video: First warm day of skiing in 2010 I think, while wearing my then new BFC neckbrace that my gf bought me for my bday just for surface turns practice, I did a final pass on the 5ft line on the boom backwards with some shaky back ones and toe holds and on a whim decided to try my first back to front surface turn on my feet. As I let go of the handle with my right hand, I turned and made it to the front clean and completely but then almost instantly caught a right toe and fell forwards. I did a torpedo type dive into the water only to have my head instantly get pinned to my chest. I heard a few creaks and pops before I popped out of the water and then bounced and then let go with the usual forward roll as I came to a stop. Floating there in the water, the pain was so intense that all I could do was float there in the water. As the boat trolled up and people started talking to me, I couldn’t even speak I was in so much pain. I think all I said was “Just leave me alone a minute”. Never had I been in so much pain. Finally I was able to paddle behind the boat and climb in slowly. After popping a bunch of Advil I went off to work, applying ice to my neck on and off most of the day, contemplating how I was going to get back to trying surface turns again. It’s hard to believe but I still came back out after a week or so and started attempting and occasionally succeeding at all 4 surface turns–here’s some video from two months later:

    The first time I had this same kinda horribly bad front fall was at the Shakopee tournament in 2007 I think. I tried one foot front wake slalom towards the end of my two foot slalom pass in competition and fell forwards ala scorpion style, not letting go of the handle (For some reason I thought I would tumble up and do more crossings? Yeah, stupid). My neck hurt so bad but through ice pack application and stretching it for a few hours I went out and tricked my best recorded run of 910 that afternoon. I scored the first back toe hold I have ever tried behind the boat and with a front toe handle. I fell after trying to re-grab the handle…but, hands free, it scored! Anyhow, the lesson to be learned here is this: When you fall, let go of the rope handle and then you can ski another day. If you don’t, sometime you might not let go and it will be serious and you may never ski again, or worse yet, it will be fatal and the game will be over because your life will be over.

  10. Dan Tanis says:

    My most memorable Faceplant(?) well that’s pretty tough since almost every run I made up until maybe the last 10 years or so ended in a faceplant – yes I was doing it wrong ALL those years and will have a lot pain as I get older………. I’ve been told and I already feel it. I’ve had the easy ones, the hard ones , the ones were my face is numb, the ones were you don’t hear for a day or so , the ones that the back of your head hurts and yet I fell forward, the ones were I could have used an additional firm piece of protection that without it hurt like H#!!, but oddly I had no other pain in my body for 3 days – and thankfully was able to sit on frozen peas for relief, the falls waving to the dock, the falls while on the boom showing off, or the falls too close to the fishing boat.

    But I do have a most memorable faceplant – actually 3 , 3 that I will never forget 3 that my family will never forget, 3 that my ski partners will never forget – the faceplant that didn’t hurt my face but literally influenced my life going forward, influenced how I move, how I dress, and how cautious I try to be. This dreadful faceplant happened when I was a teen, back in the day before extended pylons or towers, and more speed was better……… coming around from a tumble turn and not squared up properly before planting, I fell, but hey I can tumble back up even if I only have one hand on the handle ………. no I couldn’t. I dislocated my shoulder that sunny day in Michigan behind our ’78 Ski Nautique WOW I never felt so much pain my I let out a deep guttural scream and Dad jumped in the water to me and brought me to the platform. I didn’t know what happened how whatever happened happened or if I’d ever move my arm again but somehow somewhere I relaxed enough and it eventually reduced itself – I certainly do not remember when or how it went back in and of course it was the 80’s, who goes to the doctor right away – I was weak and sore for a couple of weeks and I do remember a Dr visit – “if it pops out when lifting a case of pop come back and we’ll fix it, you’re young and strong do what you want” very bad advise to a 16 year old. Swim team practice was no therapy either it only made it worse – finally in my 30’s I had my shoulder reconstructed (after a 100 or so dislocations leaving my bones grooved)

    #2 & #3 came about 5 & 10 years after my reconstruction – #2 bad crash shoulder dislocates – first time since surgery, I had to remember how to line up the grooves and 2 grown men to help me reduce it. (I still give them crap about them puking in the boat) # 3 whatever was left of my repair was all but a memory – a bad memory. Somehow I got in the boat somehow I was able to wedge my hand in the boat cushions to stabilize my arm so the bones wouldn’t clank against each other and for whatever reason I had to ride in the boat across an 800 acre lake to the truck so we could go to the ER @ least a 15 minute boat ride, as my ski buddy is on the phone with my wife so she could meet us I relaxed enough and the sob slipped back into the socket………….. a I feel coolness and calmness, I stopped sweating, and the feel of relief envelopes me.

    Repair #2 follows shortly and all seems great!

    And have I quit footing yet ………… stupidly no, now I wear a brace :)

    Moral of the story and as mentioned already above : “When you fall, let go of the rope handle and then you can ski another day. If you don’t, sometime you might not let go and it will be serious and you may never ski again” thanks for reading Dan T

  11. Warren Herbert says:

    No2, just remembered this epic wipeout, coachng sesh with Master Ben Groen, Lake Mine, took my 10 year old daughter out of school for the day to have a set with Ben, she skiied great, Dads turn, Molly a little worried about crashes……So no skiing for about 5 months, straight into some turns on the bar. Back deep, a few one foots, get the position, let the feet come back under me….they just keep going under and wham, on the back, right knee goes in to the mouth and two bottom teeth go through the lower lip, come up with a mouthful of blood, not the best look for mildy concerned daughter….Ben however saw the funny side…..ugly internal split and fatter lip to boot….great day at the office!

  12. Rollan Aylor says:

    My hardest fall barefooting happened on Lake Austin many many years ago. I was skiing with friends and my girlfriend had joined us in the boat that day. It was a glassy day and I pulled outside of the wake and decided to show off a little with a new handle I had just gotten. Previous days on the water had allowed me to learn the teeth hold with no painful falls, however this day I decided to kick it up a notch. I went for a teeth hold, one foot. It was a successful trick for a matter of seconds, until my toe caught. My face hit the water with the handle still in my mouth. I vaguely remember the tug of war my jaw had with the boat, I wasn’t going to win. I surfaced and immediately felt for all of my teeth. They were all there! I believe my friends were concerned briefly until they saw that I was awake. Then the laughter ensued, even my girlfriend said it looked cool, just for a second! Barefooters really do have a sick sense of humor! When we pulled the handle in and the leather on the teeth strap was shredded on both sides. I also came away with a diagonal bruise across my face from the handle. Since that fall, I never attempted another teeth hold. There were witnesses to my attempt and that was all that mattered!

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