Best Slalom Water Ski for Beginners

Best Slalom Water Skis for Beginners

If you are looking to buy a slalom water ski, the chances are that you have some prior experience water skiing. A slalom ski has more concerns than a traditional combo ski. You really need to put some effort in whilst selecting the correct slalom ski for yourself. Here is a complete guide for choosing the right slalom water ski for beginners.

Top Pick

The winner within the list must be the Connelly Big Daddy Slalom water ski. I highly recommend this product to beginners switching from combo skis to slalom water skiing. The Connelly Big Daddy has a very wide tip that works best for beginners. Initially designed for a heavier skier, it is also suited to all weights. The larger surface area of the tip makes deep water starts simple. You have more buoyancy to pop up out of the water, without getting spray in your face. Here is a hearty welcome to slalom water skiing!

Best Slalom Water Skis

Top Pick
Connelly 2021 Big Daddy Slalom Ski

Includes adjustable RTS Bindings

Recreational Glass Flex Sequence

Perfect for beginners

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Pros
  • Includes adjustable RTS Bindings
  • Recreational Glass Flex Sequence

Connelly has some of the most advanced water skis on the market. This is a great brand for beginners, as it ensures a certain level of standards. The Connelly Big Daddy Ski comes along with RTS Bindings, making it a complete package for slalom water skiing. It has a wide 550 square inches of surface area along a wide tip and tail. This feature makes this ski suitable for beginners. The easy deep water starts and stability at lower speeds are what you are looking for. A closed-cell polyurethane resin core construction, which is both lightweight and durable. Connelly Big Daddy Slalom ski follows a concave build that gives you more edge to hold. It offers Connelly Advanced Profile Technology and has a subtle spine feature that helps to keep the ski straight as the boat accelerates. 

Radar 2021 Butter Knife Slalom Ski

Includes Prime and ARTP bindings

Constructed with polyurethane core material

Carbon fiber usage for flex

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Pros
  • Includes Prime and ARTP bindings
  • Constructed with polyurethane core material
  • Carbon fiber usage for flex
Cons
  • Quite expensive for occasional use

Radar Butter Knife includes Prime and ARTP bindings, a great combo for easy and smooth riding. As the name suggests, the ski works like a knife in butter. The ski has an all-terrain Polyurethane core construction. Is durable and stable for open water skiing.  Comes with a carbon fiber filling that allows it to be consistent every time.   Overall shape is quite wide, making it a perfect fit for beginner slalom skiers. The V-shaped tip and wide tail allow it to cut through water easily.

O'Brien 2021 Sequence Slalom Ski

Low drag

Lightning-fast turn-ins

Stronger pulls with a transitional concave bottom

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Pros
  • Includes a carve fin
  • Includes Z-9 Bindings
Cons
  • Requires prior slalom experience for smooth control

This ski model from O’Brien is suitable for beginners due to its wide body and convenient structure. The vibrant color usage makes the ski attractive. The package includes high-quality Z9 bindings to make it whole. O’Brien Sequence Slalom ski features a transitional concave tunnel. This shape allows the skier to have more stability and control. A wide profile and heavy rocker help you to firmly hold your place whilst the ski is on edge. Large and sharp bevel lets you cut through the water without much effort and helps to reduce water drag.

HO Freeride Evo Slalom Waterski

Wider tail with a sharper tip

Made with Paulownia lightweight wood

Includes a 3D fin

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Pros
  • Made with Paulownia lightweight wood
  • Includes a 3D fin
Cons
  • Does not include bindings

If you are looking for a premium quality ski to have a great time, this is another great choice. HO has several versions of slalom skis available. The HO Freeride Evo ski has a Paulownia Wood Flex-Core construction. These work well with water and are lightweight in nature. The ski has a wonderful structure that gives it a fish scale design. A wider tail with a sharper tip. The overall aspect ratio is perfect for low-speed skiing. Hence, beginners are bound to have a good time with these. Another great feature is the clean edge tail, which minimizes the water drag. This feature is mostly missing in a beginner ski; so is quite advantageous here. The fin follows a 3D shark structure to allow more lift to the ski and lower the drag. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are the key considerations while selecting a slalom water ski?

  • Ski Type

Even with a slalom ski, there are several choices available in the category. This varies with the skill level of the skier. A beginner needs to look for Free Skier Skis. These are useful while skiing in open waters like public lakes or rivers. The Free Skis cut through deep waters and diverse water bodies and allow a free and smooth ride. Other ski types available are course skiing and crossover skiing. These two are user-specific skis and are used in advanced level skiing.  

  • Shape and Design

The shape and design of the ski play a major role in determining the overall quality. Your ski needs to follow certain criteria to minimize the skier’s efforts and improve mobility. The engineering includes bevel configuration, concave radius, rocker, and side cut. A modified concave with flat edges design works best for beginners, as it provides better stability to the skier. The ski should also have flat bottoms and wider tails. While these might increase the drag, it helps you balance and stay straight in the water. Overall, be sure to select a wide base ski for the best results.  

  • Length of the ski

The length of the ski is a primary factor to consider while selecting the right one for you. It holds great importance in slalom water skiing. The length depends on two factors, these are – the weight of the skier and speed of the boat.  All top brands cater to all skiers by providing five different ski lengths. The common measurements are 63″, 65″, 67″, 69″ and 71″. A lower weighing skier needs shorter ski and vice versa. Be careful while selecting the right size. 

  • Fins

Fins are another part of a ski that comes into play only with slalom skis. What you need to consider is the material of the fin and its placement. A rear placement is better for beginners as it provides more stability. This also makes the ski feel bigger. A good fin is made with durable plastic material. Go for a freeride fin for beginner level skiing. Also, some skis do not include fins in the package. Make sure to check this aspect of the product as well. 

  • Construction

The use of the right material is important for slalom skis. Good quality material provides buoyancy and durability. You can go for a Polyurethane Resin Core construction for the best results. There might be other variations like the inclusion of carbon fibers. Such features only add to the quality of the ski and are perfectly fine. 

  • Speed

An important aspect of the ski is that it should be compatible with lower boat speeds. This implies that the ski needs to work fine and allow easy acceleration. The ski speed for beginners is between 24-28mph. Make sure that your ski abides by a similar range.

  1. What is the type of binding to consider while selecting a slalom ski?

You need to consider a few aspects while studying ski bindings. While you cannot go wrong with bindings of good quality, it is better to buy an adjustable binding. Adjustable bindings also suit several members of the family without much effort. You only need to select a range that is comfortable for all.

  1. How to select a comfortable pair of bindings?

It is easy to select the right bindings for beginners. This is because you do not need specific foot boots. A generic shape that fits both the left or right foot will work fine for you. This implies that the boot is symmetrical in shape. Other features you can consider is the inclusion of a tongue and laces for easy usage. 

  1. What should be the ideal investment for a slalom ski?

I believe this is an important question for most buyers due to the high cost of a ski. The cost is variable while buying slalom water skis. It highly depends on the material and the features of the ski. Slalom skis are comparatively expensive than the traditional combo skis. Approximately $500 will help to buy the right slalom ski with bindings. A ski without bindings of course costs less. I would recommend you go with a complete package to avoid any hassle. The cost should also depend on the frequency of usage. If water skiing is a yearly activity that you enjoy with your family, you can go ahead with a cheaper version.