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Hoverboard released in New Zealand

Thursday 8 Nov 2012 7:14 a.m.

By Adrien Taylor

A machine that blurs the line between dolphin and hoverboard is finally being released in New Zealand.

The FlyboardX has already created a storm of hype around the world and people here say it could be "the next big thing" in water sports.

See extended video of the Flyboard

Grace, power, agility and freedom - it's these stunning images of synergy between man and machine that were playing in my mind as I geared up to have my first go on the FlyboardX.

I discovered the FlyboardX isn't as easy as it looks, but the rush of adrenaline was incredible once I got the hang of it.

Flyboard spokesman Jamie Anderson says it is a lot of fun.

“Even just getting two, three metres off the water it gives you this real feeling of being able to fly so that's the biggest sort of buzz really.”

The machine is the brainchild of Frenchman jet skier Francky Zapata and it's the centrepiece of Auckland's Big Boys Toys show this weekend.

It's attracted a lot of international attention and FlyboardX says it expects to sell well in New Zealand which has a big watersports culture.

The question that'll be on the minds of mothers around the country though will be "is flying above water safe?"

The makers say it is but Water Safety New Zealand chief executive Matt Claridge says the organisation will keep an keen eye on the new water sport.

“There's the potential for injuries, for collisions but that's inherent when you're on the water and you've just got be careful.”

At a starting price of $14,000, the FlyboardX doesn't come cheap, and that price doesn't include the jetski you'll need to plug it into.

It's not the only machine of it's kind, there's also the Jetlev Flyer.

The FlyboardX is available online and will be hitting the shops soon but before you get your hands on one you'll need to take the compulsory one hour tuition on how to use it.

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