A Flyboard rider stands on a board connected by a long hose to a watercraft. Water is forced under pressure to a pair of boots with jet nozzles underneath which provide thrust for the rider to fly up to 15 m (49 ft) in the air or to dive headlong through the water down to 2.5 m (8 ft).[not in citation given]
The Flyboard was invented in Autumn 2012 by a French water-craft rider, Franky Zapata. The design allows the device to climb out of the water and be stable in the air. This was achieved by the underfoot propulsion and hand stabilization. The French Institut national de la propriété industrielle (INPI) granted Zapata a patent for his invention. The Flyboard was the subject of a lawsuit from competitor Jetlev which was dropped without prejudice in March 2013. The device was presented to the public for the first time at the jet ski World Championship 2012 in China. Since its introduction in 2012 the Flyboard has sold around 2500 units.
In the 2015 season of America's Got Talent, a flyboard enthusiast named Damone Rippy performed Flyboarding as his act on the show.
The Flyboard is a bolt-on device that is attached to a personal water craft (PWC). It is designed so that the PWC follows behind the rider’s trail, allowing the rider multiple degrees of freedom, even allowing the rider to go underwater if they desire. The pilot on the Flyboard is secured in by bindings similar to a wakeboard and the rider is propelled from water jets below the device. The Flyboard is buoyant for safety, which also allows the rider to rest in the water between rides. The use of a personal flotation device and helmet is required by rental locations for safety purposes to protect against serious head trauma in the event of the rider impacting the PWC or stationary structures, and to protect the ears from damage and discomfort from impacts with the water.
Device power is controlled by a throttle on the PWC. The equipment may be used in two modes: The primary one requires two people, one to control the PWC throttle which regulates the power and height of the rider. The secondary mode relies on an accessory called an Electronic Management Kit (EMK) which allows the rider to control the PWC throttle.
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- Examples: Flyboard Ultimate Supercut Power Board Expert.
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