Now an international sport with millions of participants, water skiing was first demonstrated in the summer of 1922, when 18-year-old Ralph Samuelson invented it. Skilled at the water sport aquaplaning, which required standing on a board while being pulled by a powerboat, the adventurous teenager came up with the idea for water skiing as a new take on snow-based skiing. Experimenting with both wooden barrels and snow skis, Samuelson eventually made water skis out of pine boards, bending the tips by softening the wood with boiling water. Samuelson’s skiing attracted attention from the local community, but he failed to register his invention for patent, which later went to inventor Fred Waller. However, 50 years after his invention, Samuelson was recognized for his role in the sport and made the guest of honor at a celebration for the water skiing 50th anniversary, in 1972.