6 Tips for Beginner Jet Skiers

Do you want to start riding a jet ski, but you aren’t sure where to begin? Let’s walk through the process of your first jet ski ride and how to secure the best equipment and use the right moves for a fun, enjoyable adventure. 

1. Get the Right Equipment

Jet ski riders know the key to an excellent first experience is in having the right equipment. You must have on hand: 

  • Life jackets for every rider 
  • Fire extinguisher approved by the Coast Guard
  • Safety lanyard with your ID, which you can store in a dry bag to prevent it from getting messed up 
  • Air horn or whistle
  • Registration number of the jet ski

While those items are required, you can also choose to have other things on hand when you ride, including a first aid kit, a distress flag, sunscreen, and a smartphone with a GPS you can access if you get lost. 

2. Avoid Making Beginner Mistakes

First, never operate a jet ski if you have been drinking alcohol. Impaired judgment on the water can lead to life-threatening situations. Here are some other jet ski tips to help you avoid rookie mistakes: 

  • Wait until you are in water that’s at least waist-deep to start the jet ski. 
  • Come in at sunset because you won’t be able to see potential hazards. 
  • Operate within the weight limits of the jet ski. Only carry as many passengers as are allowed on the vehicle. 

3. Take a Boating Safety Course

One of the best jet ski tips, or tips for operating any vehicle on the water, is to take a boating safety class, which will teach you what to do if you become distressed. 

4. Wear Your Life Jacket the Entire Time

Keep your life jacket on, no matter what. Some people think life jackets feel bulky and uncomfortable. They can save your life, though. Often first-time jet ski operators underestimate how tired they are. Having that extra layer of protection will help you stay afloat if you fall off. 

5. Understand the Control Panel

Before you drive the jet ski, get familiar with the controls. Identify the on-off switch. Look for the check engine light, then see how much gas is in the jet ski. Don’t use sport mode or other performance keys the first time you take out the jet ski. 

Take the jet ski out in the water away from others to get the hang of the brakes. Remember, the throttle is sensitive, so you only need to move it a bit to get going. Look through the owner’s manual to answer any other questions before you venture further on the water. 

6. Approach Docking Carefully

When you have finished your ride, move toward the dock slowly. You may have trouble getting in the right spot if you go too fast. Slow down the jet ski to a crawl, and make sure you don’t hit the dock too hard.

Using our jet ski tips will help you have a great time on the water. Need dock accessories for your next jet ski outing? EZ Dock has many high-quality products to help you make your experience one you remember.