Tubing Without Tears
June 29, 2018
Save 10% on all watersports equipment through July 8, 2018! You haven't lived the lake life until you've been tubing. Getting wet, catching air, and wiping out - it's all part of the fun. Like any activity in and around water, safety must come first. Sadly, it's all too easy for carelessness to turn a day on the water into a tragedy. Insist that all riders wear a properly-fitted life jacket. Don't assume that a child will be all right in an adult-sized life vest; kids need life jackets made to fit them. Check your tow lines and replace them if they're frayed or worn. Sunlight degrades rope, too. If in doubt, replace the line. [caption id="attachment_768" align="aligncenter" width="300"] L to R: Photodegraded polypropylene rope, new rope.[/caption] Check the point on the tube where the tow rope attaches and make sure it's strong enough to hold up under your boat's power. Repair or replace if it's weak; many tubes have replaceable covers. Check your boat's ski tow attachment, too. Pump the tube up to its recommended pressure. Protect your skin with sunblock cream or spray, and reapply frequently. The kids might complain about this, but a little annoyance during the day can prevent a painful, restless night. Even dark skin can burn; just because you tan easily doesn't mean you're immune to sunburn or the long-term effects of UV exposure, like skin cancer. Appoint a spotter. This should be an adult who is alert and sober. It's this person's job to watch the people being towed and to let the driver know of any problems. Before letting anyone ride, make sure they know the proper hand signals so they can communicate with the spotter. Make sure the spotter knows them, too! Are you going tubing this summer? Share your photos with us on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter!