A water park should have rides and attractions that appeal to different age groups. Though most guests want to take a trip down the waterslide, the thrilling attractions for teens won’t be appropriate for young children or older adults who want to enjoy gentler attractions. You can include attractions that anyone can enjoy, but you should also include rides that target certain groups of visitors.
Slides that are ridden skin-to-slide.
• Drop – bodyslides that are notable for their vertical descent, at a steep angle.
• Speed Slides – multi-lane slides where riders race each other down the slide. Note the difference between this and the Mat Racer, below.
• Bowl – these are more common as raft or tube rides, but bodyslide variations exist. The major feature of the slide is a ‘toilet-bowl’ looking feature where riders are spiraled and ‘flushed’ down an exit chute.
• Mat Slides and Mat Racers – slides where riders lay in a face-forward riding position on a foam mat. Mat racers are speed slides with mats.
• Enclosed – partial or wholly enclosed slides have a higher thrill factor; primarily from the fact that you don’t know where you’re going!
Raft and Tube Slides:
Slides where riders sit on a raft or tube. Rafts are generally forward-facing, tubes are generally inward-facing (riders face each other). Simultaneous ridership is generally 2 or more, up to 6. Tubes have no forward ‘direction’, the tube rotates.
• Water Coasters – a modern development using water boosters, LIM, hydromagnetic, or conveyor belt technologies – to boost riders on uphill sections of the ride. • Boomerang – for lack of a better term, these are half-pipe slides that refer to the shape of the major feature. Riders end up in a half-pipe shaped section of the slide and make several swings or oscillations up either wall before exiting. Sometimes called walls.
• Bowl – the raft and tube variation of the bodyslide bowl above. Riders spiral down an exit chute, in the movement pattern of being ‘flushed’ down a toilet.
• Funnel – these offer an experience that is a hybrid of the above boomerang and bowl types. The major feature of the ride is a large funnel. These resemble bowls tipped to its side. Riders enter the funnel and make several alternating swings up the sides/walls of the funnel until exiting from the narrow end. These are also sometimes called walls.
Rides that accommodate multiple people at once can keep families together, allowing parents to enjoy themselves while also keeping their children at their side.