We always look for the positives in our boating gear reviews but the Jobe Kickflip towable tube left us struggling to find many.
Looking like a halfway house between a sofa and a disc, the Jobe Kickflip doesn’t really reap the benefits of either design. It can be towed facing forwards or backwards, thanks to quick connectors on both ends, allowing riders to sit on it sofa style or kneel on it chariot style.
An inflatable bladder under the angled backrest acts as a stabilising float to help prevent it flipping over backwards. Not only does this need a different connector to all the other valves (we end up having to inflate by mouth) but it is not very effective either, particularly when riding chariot style.
As well as having limited space for two riders with no side supports to wedge you in place, we found the handles to be in impractical positions, meaning we couldn’t counterbalance the lateral force of being flung outside the wake.
This invariably ended up with both riders being dumped into the water at the first meaningful turn. The risk of being thrown off a boat tube is all part of the fun but you need to feel like there is a reasonable chance of surviving a fast turn or jump for it to be entertaining rather than frustrating.
The Jobe Kickflip was so hard to stay on and the rides were so short that it fell firmly into the latter category.
With no side supports for the riders to lean against and no stabilising wings to help right it on landing, the riders either slipped off sideways or the whole tube capsized, with the same inevitable result.
The chariot style was no better, with the riders’ weight making it so nose heavy that we fell over the front almost as soon as we went outside the wake.
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- If you have a sadistic joy for wipeouts then this might be for you. That’s all we can think of
- Unstable design
- Uncomfortable ride
- Unsatisfactory thrills
Jobe advertise this as a wild ride but the brevity of our tests meant we struggled to find the thrill in it. It looks like we aren’t alone in this as we understand it has been quietly dropped from the range for 2024.
Capacity: 2 people
Dimensions (inflated): 62"L x 49"W
Thrill rating: 1/5
Comfort rating: 2/5
Overall rating: 1/5