For the uninitiated, wakeboard bindings are used to keep your feet on the wakeboard. They’re an essential part of any wakeboarder‘s equipment set-up. You might also see wakeboard bindings being called wakeboarding boots but they’re basically the same thing.
With that out of the way, the question that we intend on answering in this short article is “are wakeboard bindings interchangeable?”. We’ll also be helping you figure out how you should go about picking your first pair of wakeboard bindings. However, there are a couple of things that you should know before we start answering the main question.
Without further ado, let’s answer “are wakeboard bindings interchangeable?”
Are Wakeboard Bindings Interchangeable?
Fortunately, most wakeboard bindings can be used across different brands. The only thing that you should be aware of when mounting a certain brand’s bindings on a board from another company is the mounting screw length.
Keep in mind that although Slingshot bindings can be mounted on any board, their boards will only accept Slingshot boots.
So, the short answer to the question, “Are Wakeboard Bindings Interchangeable?” is yes, they are.
How Can You Choose Wakeboard Bindings?
Before you can start your search, there are a couple of factors that need to be taken into consideration which will greatly help you choose the perfect wakeboard bindings for your situation. Here are the main four things you should keep in mind.
Fit is absolutely vital for control. It’s impossible to control your wakeboard if your feet don’t fit the bindings perfectly. You should look for bindings that are tight but also feel comfortable.
Flex is also among the most important factors to take into account. You can find all sorts of bindings when it comes to flexibility. There are very stiff ones and others that are flexible. Flexible bindings are beginner-friendly as they allow for more maneuverability. However, stiff bindings are suited for skilled wakeboarders.
When you’re looking for the perfect wakeboard bindings, you should choose the type of bindings that’s more comfortable to you. There are two main types you should be looking out for.
The first type of bindings is open-toed. They’re great because they give your feet breathing space. They also tend to be more versatile. They also allow you to fit in multiple shoe sizes. This flexibility makes these types of wakeboard bindings great for children since they allow for some space than close-toed bindings.
The second type of bindings is close-toed. These wakeboard bindings tend to be more precise and fit better. This makes this a good choice of skilled wakeboarders since they allow for more control and better overall leverage. Another thing worth noting is that they also keep your feet warmer which is great considering you’ll be generally riding on cold waters. With that said, these bindings tend to be more expensive than their open-toed counterpart.
Many riders rightfully worry about whether or not the wakeboard bindings they bought are compatible with their wakeboards. Fortunately, the issue of compatibility is usually not present since wakeboard bindings are most often universal. What this means is that you should be able to use them with any wakeboard. With that said, there are always some exceptions.
In order to avoid running into this issue, you should consider the wakeboard screws and inserts. Back in the day, all wakeboard screws and inserts were an 8-inch spread. Nowadays, you can find three sizes which are 6, 7, and 8-inch spreads. With that said most wakeboard bindings should fit regardless of the size of the screws and inserts. However, you might not be able to take as many liberties with your stance. Since wider spreads imply a wider stance.
It’s worth noting that 6-inch patterns are rising in popularity and are slowing becoming the new standard in bindings. This is mainly due to the fact that they are lighter, more flexible, and have less torsional flex as well. If you found one of these but you happen to have an 8-inch spread wakeboard, you can use extenders to remedy the issue of stance limitations.
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Getting into Your Bindings
Since wakeboard bindings need to be tight and snug, a lot of riders tend to have issues getting into their bindings.
To get into your bindings as easily as possible, you need to start by wetting your feet as well as the boots. You should also make sure that the bindings are loose when you’re trying to get into them. In the worst-case scenario, you could use a lubricant to help ease your feet into the bindings with no trouble.
With that said, we highly recommend avoiding liquid dish soap or any dish soap for that matter. Most soap will dry out your bindings and cause cracks. We should also add that soap is not particularly eco-friendly so it’s best not to introduce it to the environment.
Picking Your Stance
Before you get too excited and start searching for the perfect wakeboard bindings, you need to make sure that your stance is correct so you can make the most out of the bindings. Here are a couple of tips to keep in mind.
You need to start by standing up in a way that feels natural and comfortable, and then do a squat. After that, look at the direction in which your feet and knees naturally point. Lastly, make sure to position your bindings and boots on your wakeboard so they work with the stance.
Every correct stance needs to be symmetrical. This is vital since it will allow you more control over your wakeboard as well as help you avoid falling off of it. Having an unbalanced stance could easily lead to serious back and muscle injury. Falling from your wakeboard can even incur broken bones. *
Use the guidelines we provided as the basis for your stance and work your way up from there until you reach a position in which you’re most comfortable. Your stance is something that’s always in the work and you’ll always find ways to optimize it, but you have to make sure that it’s built on solid foundations to minimize the risk of accidents and injuries.