by Seth Stisher
When your offside turn just isn’t cutting it, you usually try to tune the fin to get your water ski to finish the turn on that troublesome side of the slalom course. When the fin adjustment doesn’t work, your growing impatience forces you to manhandle the water ski to get it to turn. When this occurs, the infamous offside blowout is inevitable. So how can you get your ski to turn and accelerate across the course on your off side without blowing the tail of the ski out of the water?
Why Offside Blowout Happens
An offside blowout is akin to a skid turn on snow or losing control of a car in a curve. The basic reason it happens is because we fail to accelerate through the turn, thereby losing control of the ski. This can happen for two reasons:
1. If you allow the boat to pull you out of position through the edge change, or if you lose power through the wakes, you will lose valuable outbound direction. This causes excessive down-course speed and the ski never releases out from under you. When you approach the buoy in this fashion, the instinctual
tendency is to force the turn to make up time by rotating the upper body and pushing the tail of the ski. The ski can’t handle the extreme pressure change. The tail breaks free and you’re on your face.
2. You stay on the cutting edge too long, creating the same fast, direct approach to the buoy. This fast and direct approach creates the same situation as above — a forced turn that puts undue force on the tail of the ski.