What can swim like a mermaid, leap out of the water like a dolphin, then power into the air like Iron Man? The answer, says NerveRush.com, is: you. If you’re attached to a Water Flyboard, that is. Think of them as being a bit like a Jet Ski jet pack: your feet are strapped to a board and beneath each foot is a water jet pack. These take water from a Jet Ski that the board is attached to and the water thrust out from the board underneath your feet then propels you through the water and air, and you control your direction with the tilt of your body and the positioning of your feet.
They are “freakin’ awesome”, says NerveRush. With just a bit of practice, and less than ten minutes of learning time, you can be flipping, spinning and diving your way through the ocean. “Even the dolphins will envy your agility and grace as you’re gliding through the water and air.”
But you ain’t seen nothing yet. A futuristic video, which first emerged a couple of years ago, featured a man flying on a hoverboard across the Atlantic Ocean, says Cara McGoogan in The Daily Telegraph. Many thought it must be a hoax when the video went viral. But it wasn’t. The inventor of the Water Flyboard, Franky Zapata, had been working on a version that doesn’t rely on the water to propel you into the air. He took to the skies – and the headlines – when his futurist board was seen travelling 50 metres above the ocean at speeds of over 30mph.
The Flyboard Air is a jet-powered board with four turbo engines. You need to spend about 100 hours practising over water and another 20 over land, but, says Zapata, this is “a method of transport people could ultimately use to collect their bread”.
Perhaps one day in the future, but if so battles lie ahead. Near the start of this year, the French authorities banned their use in France.
Water Flyboards are available to buy from distributors in the UK, priced from about £3,500. The Flyboard Air costs $250,000, but is not currently available for recreational use. Water Flyboarding day experiences are available at locations around the UK. See for example FlyboardingExperiences.co.uk, AquaticJetpacks.com and BigCrazyFlyboarding.co.uk. If you try it and love it and want to buy your own, see AquaticJetpacks.com or Flyboard-Europe.com/en.