How To Hard Lean Like Shaun Murray

In this wakeboarding how to, learn the secrets to the hard lean that Shaun Murray rocked on the cover of WAKEBOARDING's March 2010 issue. Every cover is fair game for scrutiny and Murray's cover received both high praise and some very odd criticism. It seems some of you wake enthusiasts don't believe it's real. Whether it's the handy work of Michael Bay, Photoshop or Murray in his living room on top of a mirror with clever lighting, some of your aren't buying it. So I thought I'd give the hard lean a shot and perform a little MythBusters for you critics out there.

I started by figuring out exactly what Murray did. Was it a power slide? No. Was he on a whip? No. Technically, it was a switch hard lean. The move consists of edging away from the wake on your toes and lowering your body until it's flat against the water. As you can see, my shot was not as glamorous as Murray's, but I did experience the feeling, and I think this is pretty attainable move for any rider who's comfortable on his wakeboard. I recommend trying it yourself because it's funny when you crash, and if you don't, you'll find yourself gliding across the water like a legend.

1. Wait for a glassy day so you don't get chatter on your toes.

2. Start with the wake right behind your heels so when you get into position you can start edging out on your toes.

3. Pull hard with your front hand on the handle so you can reach around with your back hand; both hands are on the handle, but behind you.

4. The boat driver should keep driving straight at the same speed you normally ride. Now start edging out and lean down.

5. Keep your hips forward and your legs pretty straight. You can see this is where I had problems.

6. Now as much as you think you're getting too low, just keep going for it.

7. Take some diggers so you can find that line between eating it and grazing across the water like you own the place.

8. Use the hard lean as your warm-up move, like it's your stretch session before you start cranking off that wake. The ladies in the boat will eat it up, which will greatly increase your chances of getting some action.