Has it been a hard day on a ski slope? Have you already skied 68 km but your body is still pumped by adrenaline? In that case, this is an ideal change for you to „discharge lost energy. From majestic mountains we moved to the valley where water reigns, and not just any water, but pretty fast one. We tried adrenaline water fun called Surf Waves.
Would you like to try surfing ocean waves? Well, unfortunately, there has been no ocean in the Liptov region for last few million years. But there is still one clever possibility. You don´t have to travel thousands of kilometres to the nearest ocean, just visit the unique Surf Waves complex at Aquapark Tatralandia and enjoy your ride on a flowboard. For those having no clue, what we are talking about, it's an indoor surfing simulator located in the water park.
Let's take a ride!
Upon arrival to the parking lot of Aquapark Tatralandia, we could see information boards with places reserved for Surf Wave visitors. We parked and went to a ticket office. Long queues? Never mind. Surfers are served at a special ticket office – Infocentre. We went inside, put on our „surf-shorts“ with Hawaiian floral patterns and looked forward to an unusual experience. Before the ride, we met a surf instructor and Head of Surf Waves Peter, who instructed us about the safety and basic rules for riding the board. He also told us different interesting things, not just about waves, but also about visitors.
The wave is created by an indoor surf simulator using special water-flow technology which creates water flow imitating ocean waves. Constant flow of water driven by a 110 kW engine and water speed of 30 (the speed suitable for children with weighing over 25 kg) to 70 km / hour (adult-friendly speed) in combination with curvature of a surface create ideal conditions for surfing the board that can glide across the surface. There are four lanes in the Surf Waves extended over an area of 68 m2.
The advantage of an artificial wave is that you can learn to surf in a safe environment, on a controllable wave without sharks and sharp corals; therefore this activity is suitable for all ages. The water flow is really strong. As Peter says, surfers – women surfers in particular, often lose their bikini when falling into a stream of water at a speed of 70 km per hour. If you do not tie it well, it can easily happen that you find yourself naked. Last time, there was a man, who lost his swimsuit and we were able to give him back just a piece of it as a souvenir. We recommend, especially for ladies, that they cover their bikini with a shirt or lycra. Wetsuit can also be used.
What to expect from surfing the wave?
A lot of adrenaline, new motion, fun, lots of experience, and of course muscle soreness. A basic lesson takes 20 minutes. At the beginning, you get an introductory tutorial about the safety, how to hold the bodyboard and manipulate it. Then you can go into the water. Though it´s fast, it has a pleasant temperature of 30 °C with a minimum of chemical additives.
The basics of bodyboarding is riding so that you´re lying on your belly. You will learn what the board actually does in the water, what to do when you want to ride from side to side, what it will do with you, if skidding off the board and a stream of water pulls you down. Once you handled the first position, you can continue with kneeling position. The most important thing is to improve your balance, shift your weight properly, and get to know how the board performs in the water stream. Have you managed previous positions? So, you can try standing up and enjoying your ride on a flowboard. Now, you are riding in a standing position, flowing side-to-side and enjoying the feeling as if surfing in the ocean. Skilful riders will be able to ride on a flowboard in 20 minutes. Haven´t „made a friendship“ with the board in 20 minutes? Never mind. Try an XL-hour lesson.
Can anyone really ride?
In general, yes. Minimum weight is 25 kg, maximum is about 120 kg. Is an age important? It is suitable for visitors over 6 years. Maximum age limit? It is hard to say. A 70-year-old grandmother with artificial knees has also been riding the waves. And she was doing well. You do not have to be an athlete with strong muscles and calves like a tree trunk. There are no physical barriers. It is important to keep balance and have courage.
If you are afraid, an instructor will take you to the wave and help you with your beginnings. But watch out! Flowboarding and bodyboarding is not a relaxation procedure with bubbles in the pool. It's a physical activity. Your entire body is engaged, especially the muscles on your hands, legs, back, the centre of your body, especially your belly. It´s like a fitness for the whole body. People with health restrictions don´t need to be afraid as well. Peter told us about a man, who rode the board with a prosthetic leg. He has our respect!
Thank you Peter for instructions and interesting information about the wave. We'll be happy to come again, for example for Surf Night. It's a 4-hour evening ride at a great price, which is designed for beginners as well as experienced riders. The international participation in Surf Night from Bohemia, Poland and Ukraine is a proof. If you enjoyed riding and want to repeat it, you have several options. Just look at the different types of admission tickets. You can also take advantage of our season tickets.
As we have bought an admission ticket to the Surf Wave including Aquapark, we are going to enjoy our time relaxing in swimming pools and saunas. After all, we deserve a bit of relaxation after a long active day.