The youngest riders start as early as 6 years old so strength has very little to do with it. It is more about technique and this you will learn at your own pace with very small kites and light winds to start.
How fit must you be to Kitesurf?
The coolest thing about kiting is that you get fit while doing it. You might not be fit to start but if you do it regularly it gives you a full-body workout. Initially, as long as you have no serious medical issues you will be ok.
Is Kitesurfing Dangerous for me?
The modern kites and control bars have been developed of the past 20 years to minimise the risk of danger. When the sport first started and the kites were attached to the harness, there was very little in the form of releasing the kite safely if there was danger. Today the modern bar (used to steer and power the kite) not only has safe release points but also the ability to simply let the bar go and instantly there is almost no pull anymore.
Is Kiting dangerous for spectators?
The first thing you realise when starting to kitesurf is that you need a very large amount of open space to fly in. Though you might be safe with all the new safety features on the kite to get yourself out of trouble, you must be aware of not only other kiters but also the general public around you.
Do I need kitesurfing lessons?
Yes! This is the most important thing you will do in your kitesurfing adventure and the difference between the dream and the nightmare! The best way to compare it is by learning how to drive a car. In the beginning, there are quite a few things to concentrate on to just control the car and having another person show you what order things are done in is vital. Then the car moves when you want it to and goes faster or slower and changes direction. It's the same with the kite. After a while, you can relax and let the muscle memory and subconscious take over and relax and enjoy. Just as the car can be dangerous however if it gets out of control for both you and others, so can the kite and this is why an experienced qualified instructor is super important in the beginning.
Can my friend teach me?
Only if your friend is a QUALIFIED kitesurfing instructor. The reason for this is that many times people who have been kitesurfing for a long time and are now realy good, have forgotten what it was like right in the beginning. Statistics show that up to 80% of beginners who injure themselves do so when it is a friend trying to teach them the basics. They also might not have the beginner harness, helmet and impact vest necessary to help in protecting you. If they are your friend and want you to start they will tell you to go and get lessons first before giving you advice on how to fly.
How long does it take to learn the basics of kitesurfing?
To be able to fly a small training kite is surprisingly fast and most people pick it up in 15 to 20 minutes. If it takes longer than that don't worry, sometimes the wind conditions can make it a bit difficult if it is too light or too strong. Your instructor will also point out the errors and help you correct them. Many people try to control the kite with a steering wheel motion but it responds best with a motion like riding a bicycle.
What is Kitesurf Harness Flying?
To fly the kite hooked into your harness being able to steer, power and depower the kite comfortably, usually takes between 1 and two hours.
What is kitesurfing body dragging?
This is when you are hooked into the harness and steer the kite to the left change direction and use the kite to pull you through the water.
Body dragging, launching the kite from the water and doing the safety drills take on average about 1 to two hours. It is important to note here that the better you are at this the easier the next part becomes which is using the board, so spend as much time as possible on this so that you are confident with your kite controll.
In kitesurfing what is Flying Blind?
When riding you are not looking at the kite all the time but rather where you are going. To start you also need to be able to get the board onto your feet so you are looking at the foot straps while holding the board and at the same time still controlling the kite. This sounds very complicated but if you play in the water with the body dragging for a reasonable amount of time and become confident with your flying, this becomes a lot easier.
What are kitesurfing water starts?
Now, all that you have practised so far come together with getting up out of the water using the kite to pull you up and along and small runs to the right and left. This will be about an hour or two until the runs start getting longer. Here is where you will get good at relaunching the kite from the water.
How do you Kitesurf Upwind?
This you get to once achieving all the above points and usually take about two hours. Having the correct amount of pull from the kite in the wind window, not right at the edge and not straight in front of you does two things. It generates a certain amount of power and also direction.
There are three ways to control this.
1. Where the kite is in the wind window
2. Pulling your bar in or releasing it out
3. Leaning back against the harness and pushing the rail of the board into the water or coming more upright on the board and releasing the tension.
Have a lookout for the next in the series where we will be discussing
What beginner kitesurfing equipment to buy and also when do you buy your first Kitesurfing gear.
If you have any questions or comments please let us know in the comments form below.