I'm not a newby to waterslides at all, but I am to body slides...
I've always been acustomed to slides that either use a tube to travel down, or a mat to sit on. It makes travelling over the sections seemless, smooth, and extremely fun.
Just recently, I visited Worlds of Adventure, and tried out their current 2 sets of body slides in their Hurricane Harbor. To use body slides (ie: any waterslide which doesn't use a mat or tube), you have to lay down on your back with your ankles crossed and your arms over your chest (so the sign says). For me, it wound up hurting like hell, which leads me to these questions:
TheStingray Wet Slides... when sliding down them (both the racing & the straight drop one), is it just me, or do they really do hell on your back with the force of the water as you approach the bottom? Is it like this for all drop body slides? The water just rushes with so much force on your back, it felt really painful instead of fun.
Neptune's Falls... similar as they are also body slides, but they twist & turn which looks extremely fun. When I tried it, it not only hurt my back, but I also got big marks on it, and was told I was even slightly bleeding because the gauging was so bad... Am I riding them wrong, or when you go down them, do the joints (where each piece of tube connects) really hurt your back as you slide across them? I just couldn't enjoy the slide down. They look extremely fun, but they hurt like hell... is it just me, or is this true for everyone who's tried these or ANY body slides at any water park?
Will it be the same for the body slides at the new Hurricane Mountain complex, or will the connections be smoother? I really want to enjoy these slides, as it could take hours just to try every slide just once... but I'm wondering if I'm riding them wrong, or if it's supposed to hurt the back like that.
The force of the water can be somewhat painful on body slides, but what usually hurts my back are the seams. Sometimes I'll get off a slide and have several red marks on my back. A good way to avoid this is to arch your back...your shoulders may still take the brunt of the pain, but the best part about arching your back is that you will pick up a considerable amount of speed. Whether that's a good or bad thing is up to you. ;)
Nope, they do really hurt. Carowinds Pipeline Peak body slides are some of the most intense I've been on, only surpassed by Myrtle Waves purple body slides. Before last year the slides would throw you up on the edges and literally slice your back on edges. They have now added sprayers around the curves to avoid this but it was very painful. Now all you have to do is prevent yourself from getting a concussion on the black side's last turn, it FLYS around a corner and your head slams back. I definately understand why you should put your hands behind your head. Don't even get me started on Myrtle Waves slides though. Head banging, intense, and dry around curves. Very very painful. In fact, one of the three has been closed since the first year due to riders overshooting the landing pool and hitting concrete, and extreme high speed turns.
Are there any other ways to ride body slides, or do you got to completely adhere to the signs by crossing your legs & arms and lying basically flat on your back? I can see on the speed slides... at least for guys... why you have to cross your ankles, but is it really necessary on the twisty body slides?
I've been to two full-fledged water parks in my life: PKI's WaterWorks and The Beach, across from PKI. I found WaterWorks' slides hurt my back as people have said, but The Beach's don't.
btw, if anyone is in Cincinnati looking for a waterpark, don't settle for PKI. The Beach is far, far superior.
Vater is right about arching your back to pick up speed. When I ride speed slides, I try to let nothing touch the slide except my shoulderblades and my heels. You can actually get some serious airtime on The Beach's "Banzai" twin speed slides.
------------------ A day is a drop of water in the ocean of eternity. A week is seven drops.
Actually, I'd forgotten that I rode a massive freefall slide at Ocean City Pier several years ago. It's no longer there, but I believe it was over 100 feet tall. They also told riders to cross your arms and legs, and for good reason: it spit you out into a 3- or 4-foot deep pool, unlike most slides today where the trough at the bottom just gets gradually deeper to slow you down. A friend of mine ripped his shorts ont he way down, and literally skipped like a stone across the surface of the pool and slammed into the padded coping at the far end. My brother rode it and felt like he had been kicked in the crotch on the way down since he froze from fear--rather than crossing his legs, he instinctively put his feet to either side of the slide in a futile attempt to slow himself down. So yes, some slides can be extremely painful.
It's not just you. This is why body slides are becoming rarer and rarer, with tube slides being the primary kind built these days. I remember 'back in the day' when 'Jet Scream' at Water Country USA was still 'Jet Stream' it was a body slide and I wished like heck they'd let you use Innertubes on it. Wish granted. It's much more fun now.
My family and I used to go to this resort in Hillsboro, Ohio, called Woodland Lakes, and it had a pretty big waterslide. However it was the old "rough" kind that you had to use a mat with. The layout was unique.... it started with a short flat section, then went down a big hill into two helices (one tunneled) before some more turns and the splashdown.
So the preferred way to get some speed was to come running and dive onto the mat on your stomach as you jumped into the slide (no corporate rules here). But when I tried it, I stepped on the mat and I went flying into the slide without it.
Believe me I did *not* want to go down that big hill without a mat. So I pressed all my limbs against the sides of the slide trying to stop. I lost about half my skin in the process, but I managed to stop about two feet from the edge of the hill. Then I just turned sideways and bled until some kind fellow thought to send a mat down the slide to me. Then I completed the ride in pain.
------------------ A day is a drop of water in the ocean of eternity. A week is seven drops.
I have never found water slides painfull. There was one time, however, that I was going down backwards and headfirst and hit my head a few times (it's better if you know what's coming). I think it mostly depends on either how old the slides are or how they are maintained. By the way, I've been to Wet 'n Wild in Las Vegas and the one in Brisbane, Australia.
I used to live right next to Raging Waters in San Dimas, and most of their slides were relatively comfortable. I remember there was one with three seperate covered slides, one that went almost straight down the middle, while the two on either side curled around and crossed in the middle before spitting out at the end. One of the sides had something wrong with the joints in one section, and EVERYONE I knew who rode on that side ended up bleeding from the right elbow. Definitely not good. I only rode the other side and the center, and I was fine.
They had one quick speed slide with lots of little drops followed by a relatively flat section, then another drop...you could *really* whack your head good with the airtime on those drops, but I guess that's a risk you run no matter what when you're floating through the air lying on your back ;)
Finally, I didn't uncross my feet on their big, vertical drop one, but man, you get some water forced into some uncomfortable spots on a slide like that....OUCH!
I normally do not find waterslides painful (except for the occasional speed slide), but I did find the body slides at SFWoA to be extremely painful. It felt like the connections between the pieces were uneven or had gaps... ouch!
I hit my head on one at SFWoA and really gashed myself up. Those slides offer a beating. It is not only you. I'm glad you said something because I thought it was me. Maybe they really are rough and dangerous.
Ive only had two bad experiences on body slides. The first occured at Cedar Points water park. The particular body slide that hurt was one which had a triple down at the end. Although I love airtime on roller coasters, airtime on water slides is something to fear to a great extent. Not only was I flying ALL over the place, I landed hard on the slide resulting in bruises. But since im such a masachist i rode it again =)
The other body slides I hate are the enclosed ones at Six Flags Great Adventures Hurricane Harbor. They are fast, tight, and extremely painful in how the forces are just unbearable! I refuse to ride them ever again.
------------------ You're at a party and see a beautiful woman. She walks up to you and says, "I hear you're fantastic in bed." -- That's Brand Recognition.
Concrete stays MUCH cooler than 'glas, but you can give up a considerable amount of skin...;)
The fiberglas slides are generally MUCH more comfortable, unless you manage to touch a *hot spot* for too long...ouchie! Also, the JOINTS between sections have been known to do their fair share of *exfoliating*.
The best solution....mat slides and raft slides....wet, fast, fun, and w0000t, pain-free...:) ------------------ Besides, gators don't favor chlorine...;)
Has anyone been to Four Bears Waterpark in Michigan??? When i was there a few years ago, there was one slide there call "Lightning" or somethin, and it had a mat, but everyone who rode had to wear a helmet because out how steep the bottom is at the water entry point, you would "whack" your head against the slide. Doesn anyone know more about/been on it(i preffered not to ride)? is it still there?
I too have never found slides to be at all painfull. the 2 big things i have is fast curves where it feels like you will fly off, and certain tube slides at Raging Waters Wildwood (Morey's Pier). There are 2 that have "breaks", which are just large rubber bumps that almost make you loose control or grind your teeth...