Compare Specs Discover '24 PWCs Browse Reviews
4 Best Jet Ski Reboarding Steps and Ladders Compared [Video]

4 Best Jet Ski Reboarding Steps and Ladders Compared [Video]

Based on our research, the four best jet ski reboarding steps and ladder options are as follows:

  1. OEM jet ski reboarding steps
  2. Aftermarket jet ski reboarding steps
  3. Yamaha RecDeck reboarding ladder
  4. Folding jet ski ladders
If you want to find out more about these options, you’ve come to the right place.

We at JetDrift have compiled all you need to know under one roof!

What is the Reboarding Step on a Jet Ski?

As the name suggests, jet ski reboarding steps and ladders are designed to make reboarding the jet ski easier from deep water. Most of them are spring-loaded steps mounted on the stern of the hull, but you can also find some jet ski reboarding ladders in the marketplace.

There’s no question that a reboarding step or ladder is an essential feature on any jet ski. If a jet ski lacks this key accessory, reboarding it from deep water can be difficult or even impossible!

As you can imagine, this would cause a lot of headaches if you can’t get back on the machine when you’re out on open waters.

This is where reboarding steps and ladders come into play.

If your jet ski has a reboarding step, you can easily and safely get back on board. All you need to do is grab the rear handle with your hand, fold the reboarding step down and place one foot on it. Then use your leg and upper body strength to pull yourself up out of the water.

The general rule is that the larger and more stable the jet ski the easier it is to reboard.

Also, the design of the reboarding step plus the position and size of the grab handle are no less important. Some skis like the Kawasaki STX 160 come with a dual grab handle, which makes reboarding much easier.

As a final word, don’t forget that you need to shut the engine down before trying to get back on the ski.

Now, let’s drill into the details and talk in detail about the best jet ski reboarding steps!

The 4 Best Jet Ski Reboarding Steps and Ladders

1. OEM Jet Ski Reboarding Steps

There’s no question that OEM jet ski reboarding steps are among the best options available. These steps are designed specifically for each jet ski model, so they fit perfectly and offer easy reboarding.

Almost every OEM jet ski reboarding step is a spring-loaded self-retracting bar mounted on the rear of the hull. The key advantage of these steps is that they fold up automatically when out of use.

Therefore, you don’t have to bother pulling them up manually after every use.

As a rule of thumb, most of the more recent jet skis come standard with a reboarding step, but some budget jet skis and many older machines lack this important feature.

The good news is that the biggest manufacturers sell OEM reboarding steps for their models separately. They typically come with installation hardware and can simply be bolted onto the rear of the hull.

OEM jet ski reboarding steps are quick to install, easy to use, and fit perfectly, which is why they are so popular among riders.

2. Aftermarket Jet Ski Reboarding Steps

If you can’t find an OEM step for your machine, you should take a look at the aftermarket jet ski reboarding steps.

Just like their OEM counterparts, these units are usually designed to fit specific models. However, you can also find some universal jet ski reboarding steps in the marketplace.

They do a good job on budget and vintage 2-stroke jet skis that were manufactured without a reboarding step.

If you are considering buying an aftermarket unit, make sure that it will fit on your ski perfectly before making your purchase.

3. Yamaha RecDeck Reboarding Ladder

Besides standard steps, OEM jet ski reboarding ladders are also gaining in popularity.

One of the best designs was revealed by Yamaha in 2021 as part of the revolutionary RecDeck connection system.

The base of this system is a removable RecDeck rear platform extension, which comes with a built-in reboarding PWC ladder.

Unlike standard steps, this drop-down ladder features three steps, which makes reboarding much easier and safer.

What’s more, the RecDeck platform can accommodate a wide range of accessories like fishing racks, coolers, and even a lounge seat.

4. Folding Jet Ski Ladders

If you are looking for a cheap option, folding jet ski ladders are for you.

The key advantages of these simple units are an inexpensive price tag and easy-to-install design. You can simply loop them to the tow eye without using any tools. It’s as easy as it sounds!

On the other hand, using these ladders is much less convenient and practical than using a regular reboarding step.


First, these ladders are flexible, so they swing in the water and can’t support your leg as effectively as a rigid bar. Storing it can also be a headache since you have to keep it handy, strapped to the grab handle or attached somehow to the rear platform.

Storing a reboarding ladder in the storage compartment is not the best idea, since you won’t be able to reach the main storage unit on the jet ski from the water.

If you accidentally fall off the saddle, a reboarding ladder sitting in a storage unit will not help you get up out of the water!


As a takeaway, we’ve answered the most common questions on the topic!

What is the Reboarding Step on a Jet Ski?

Jet ski reboarding steps are foldable rigid bars that make getting back onto the jet ski easier from deep water. The majority of these units are spring-loaded, retractable metal bars covered by soft, skin-friendly materials.

Do You Need a Reboarding Step on a Jet Ski?

General wisdom says that a reboarding step is a must on every jet ski.

Reboarding a jet ski in deep water without a step requires a lot of body strength, athletic skills, and practice.

Therefore, without a step, you risk not being able to reboard the ski, which can be dangerous in many ways.

Do All Jet Skis Come with a Reboarding Step?

While most production jet skis come standard with a reboarding step, some budget and “rental” skis lack this important feature like the Yamaha VX-C and entry-level Sea-Doo Sparks.

How Much Does a Jet Ski Reboarding Step Cost?

The price of jet ski reboarding steps ranges from $100 up to $500, while less practical folding ladders cost anywhere from $10-$100 depending on the make and model.