If your kids love water and adventure, Next Level Watersports has the ultimate water activities designed for summer fun for the whole family. The company was founded by Jake Hoefler and Jon Beery, two friends who came together with a love for freedom of being on the water, passion for coaching, and years of kiteboarding, sailing, and surfing experience between the two of them. Through Next Level Watersports, Jake and Jon hope to show the world just how much fun a day on the water can be. Based in Nantucket, MA during the summer and Stuart, FL, in the winter, Next Level also services Martha’s Vineyard and beyond through offsite coaching programs. We asked the team at Next Level Watersports to share a bit more about how they take a day on the water to the next level:
What is your most popular activity?
We offer four core services: Kiteboarding, Wakeboarding, Winging, and Hydrofoiling. Young kids can’t get enough of our wakeboarding and tubing offering. It’s a remarkable thing when you get a set of kids who have never been on a board before, and, by the end of just one session, they’re launching themselves off the wake, grinning from ear-to-ear. Teenagers and adults gravitate to kiteboarding, which is most similar to a powder day on the mountains.
Sounds amazing. What else would you say separates Next Level Watersports apart?
What truly sets us apart is our caliber of instruction, passion, and skill for teaching the watersports we love. The sports we teach may seem intimidating at first, but, in reality, are achievable for pretty much anyone. Through individualized instruction from our professional coaches, in just a few lessons you can go from being a complete beginner to an advanced rider, challenging yourself, all while having fun. An ordinary day is transformed into an exciting and educational experience that keeps you coming back for more! Beyond the coaching, we love our clients, forming friendships that last for years.
Which activity is best for a newbie in water sports? And a total daredevil?
If you have just one day to come out, we’d definitely recommend wakeboarding. With this watersport, you are most likely to learn the most in one session. Also, if you enjoy wakeboarding, you’ll love kiting even more, and you’ll have set the foundation for learning to kite. While kiteboarding takes a few lessons to learn it, it gives you the freedom to travel the world exploring and riding for the rest of your life.
Can you please describe your watersports camp?
We started our Watersports Camp to help get the next generation of kids out on the water, pushing themselves like we do ourselves. It’s why the motto for the camp is, “Let us turn your kids into legends.” Most kids’ camps offer pretty vanilla activities such as biking, arts & crafts, tag, etc. Stuff you can do anywhere. We love Watersports Camp because it offers kids of all abilities activities that you can really only do with the Next Level team. For example, a camper may start the week never having been active on the water before. By the end of four short days, they’re ripping along under a kite and flying on a hydrofoil with a newfound love for watersports. To top it all off, they have a new group of friends to do it with. This is the goal with Watersports Camp. It’s offered for kids 10 – 18 YO and takes place out on Nantucket Harbor, Monday – Thursday each week all summer.
What is hyrofoiling? And winging?
Let’s start with a hydrofoil. In this case, a hydrofoil is a board with wings underneath it that allow it to lift out and fly above the water. Many have seen it applied in the America’s Cup, kiting, surfing, sailing, etc. Hydrofoiling is remarkable in that way, as when you’re flying above the water, as there is no resistance. It is smooth and graceful and feels a lot like you’re skiing in deep snow. The eFoil is a battery powered hydrofoil that allows you to fly around floating along on your board and represents the latest advancement in hydrofoil technology. It makes learning to hydrofoil extremely forgiving, easy, and accessible to anyone. Winging represents the latest iteration of windsurfing combined with a hydrofoil that came to market last year. The “Wing” kind of looks like a bat wing, behaves much like a windsurf sail, and powers you along on a hydrofoil. It gives you the sensation of foiling while allowing you the freedom to ride waves and make smooth turns you wouldn’t be able to do on a traditional windsurfer. Both are a blast to teach and proffer a bit easier learning curve than kiting.
You do private parties—why is this a great option for those still taking COVID precautions?
Our private parties have proven to be a hit! We’ve taken out all types of groups. From wedding and birthday parties to family reunions and groups of friends, our events provide a new way to experience Nantucket. Guests can bring their own coolers, relax on our boats, and have a blast trying their hands at the various water activities. For the COVID minded, it has been a perfect option, as we are outside in the open air, well distanced from other groups and riders.
And what other precautions has the company been taking during COVID?
When we started our season last year, similar to everyone else, COVID was on the forefront of our minds. We worked with consultants and other camps for guidance and implemented masking, social distancing, and sanitation policies to reduce the risk of transmission. One of the best benefits of our watersports offerings during this time has been that we are always outside in blowing breeze where risks are extremely low. In addition to having coaches vaccinated, we’re continuing these policies, as well as following all local and state legislations, and have our fingers crossed for another year with zero COVID cases.
Awesome. What’s next for the company?
We are excited to keep growing the camp aspect of our business as it continues to be a lot of fun for both participants and coaches. We simply can’t get enough of watching the kids develop their competency as riders. Sharing the gift of these amazing sports is why we’re in this to begin with, and it is truly rewarding to watch it come full circle. Beyond camp, we’ve been a vendor for all the major brands in the industry for years, providing clients with resources to purchase their own gear. A big next step for us is going to be building a web store to grow our ecommerce business.
Anything else you’d like to share?
We’re really excited for the 2021 season. The boats are getting cleaned up and dropped into the water, and our staff are arriving back on island for another amazing summer on Nantucket. Come out and join us for some of the ultimate water activities designed for fun for the whole family!
This story is sponsored by Next Level Watersports.