Mike Murphy has had an incredible run as one of the world’s most recognizable personalities in water skiing. For more than 50 years he has literally transformed the sport as a pioneer, inventor, and rider.

Here are just a few of his highlights:



▪   Co-inventor of the original kneeboard (Knee Ski, 1972)

▪   Co-inventor of the sit-down hydrofoil (Air Chair, 1989)

▪   Inventor of the PureVert Wake System (2001, currently used by several top manufacturers)

▪   Murphy holds 12 patents for innovative water ski related products

▪   As a skier Mike created 3 disciplines from scratch: he is the first kneeboarder (1972), the father of hot dog water skiing (1970s), and the first hydrofoiler to ride away from a flip (1990).

▪   He has invented 50+ tricks on various devices

hot dog kneeboard foil












Through the years Murphy has been referred to as the world’s best rider in several disciplines of water skiing including endurance racing, hot dog water skiing, drag racing, kneeboarding, show skiing, and hydrofoiling. If added together his time at the top would total more than 40 years!

aqua drag ski 










▪   Catalina Ski Race 1st place outboard division (1966)

▪   Open Men Champion Lake Mead 75-miler (1968)

▪   International Speed Ski Champion: 118.92 mph in the quarter mile (1978)

▪   708 consecutive flips in one ride (1994)

▪   Flight Worlds Big Air Champion: 18′6″ (1998)

mead flip record big air











▪   Hundreds of boat shows

▪   Clinics, demos and exhibitions in dozens of countries

▪   Special needs volunteer

▪   10 or 12 vans with millions of miles.

▪   Dozens of appearances on TV and film

▪   Appearances in Sports Illustrated  and Playboy

special oly van SI Playboy













Mike has taught thousands of people around the world how to ski.

Water Ski School













  • Knee Ski (1972-1975)
  • Tunnel Board (1976-1979)
  • Mike Murphy’s Ski School and Pro Shop (1976-1995)
  • Air Chair (1989-1998)
  • Sky Ski (1998-2004)
  • Next Foils (2013-

Owner Knee Ski Tunnel BOard AIr Chair Sky Ski Next FOils











*“Mike Murphy – Superstar,” Harvey McLeod, Spray, July, 1979, 42.