A swivel ski is a wide, single ski in which the binding platform is mounted on ball bearings enabling the skier to rotate 180°, 360°, 720° and 1080° while the ski is still facing toward the tow boat. Typically, this act is accomplished by women, incorporating the grace and beauty of dance. Similar to the dance interpretation of figure skating, Swivel skiing is a specialized act in show skiing. It takes many , many hours of practice to become proficient. The ladies of Badgerland pride themselves on helping each other to loearn this aspect of show skiing.
One of the first turns to be learned on a swivel ski is called a toe turn. Having a qualified release person and trick release in the boat, the skier places her free foot (foot not in the binding) into the toe hold piece of the handle. Stand up straight, keep your foot in the toe hold about 8” above the tip of the swivel ski and both of your legs locked and straight. Keeping your eyes on the horizon and your shoulders up, rotate your hips and shoulders simultaneously until you are 180° (facing backward). Your legs are still locked and straight and your back arched toward the boat. Just the reverse is done to recover to the front skiing position. To make this more difficult and appealing, Badgerland show a swivel ski toe turn line (many girls behind the same boat performing the same trick at the same time).Badgerland also presents a few “star” swivel skiers that perform difficult combination 360°, and 720° moves. This takes years of water and dryland practice. And, of course, falling.
This aspect of show skiing, like others, has much room for individuals to show their specific style and attitude as well as innovate new moves. The possibilities are endless. That is why, I believe, show skiing is so addictive.