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Kitesurfing: The Most Thrilling Sport You Don’t Know About

Learn everything there is to know about kitesurfing – what it is, how to get started, and the equipment you need to start.

Kitesurfer

Kitesurfing has been a popular recreational activity for many years, yet many people are still unfamiliar with it. Kitesurfing, also called Kiteboarding,  is an extreme sport where the kiter uses the power of the wind along with a large kite to be pulled on a water, land, or snow surface. Sound intriguing? Read on!

Kitesurfer Event

What is Kitesurfing?

In 1977, Netherlands inventor, Gijsbertus Adrianus Panhuise, received a patent for kitesurfing. He defined it as a water sport in which an individual is pulled by a kite or parachute-type device on a floating board. Today, there are over 1.5 million kitesurfers worldwide, and the sport is growing each year. 

Most people don’t realize the adrenaline rush and thrill of the sport— hobbyist kiters often ride at speeds between 15 and 25 mph, while professional kiters often go at speeds of 50 or 60 miles! 

Kitesurfing is an ideal hobby for adventure seekers who love water, thrill, and a healthy dose of travel. Unless you live in an area the fits the criteria of kitesurfing, you’ll need to find a location that provides the landscape (or seascape, in this case) for kitesurfing. Consistent winds, pleasant weather, readable waves or perfect flat water are all required,  and an exciting location is an added bonus.

Fortunately, there are lots of good places to discover. From Peru’s rugged coastline to Maui’s picture-perfect beaches, there are countless exotic places to explore. Whether you’re a pro freestyler, a big wave rider, or a first-time border, check out these 10 excellent spots to fill your kite and hit the sea.

Kitesurfer Air

Top 10 International Locations for Kitesurfing

There are countless locations around the globe perfect for kitesurfing, but there are several that standout for offering the best experience—let’s take a look at our top ten below: 

  1. Maui, Hawaii, USA—one of the birthplaces of kitesurfing
  2. Tarifa, Southern Spain—where the annual Masters of kiteboard takes place
  3. La Ventana, Mexico—a favorite spot for kitesurfing
  4. Kalpitiya, Sri Lanka—a great place for kitesurf beginners
  5. Essaouira, Morocco—the consistent cross-shore winds make Essaouira a favored kitesurfing spot
  6. Mui Ne, Vietnam—a top favorite spot for kitesurfers
  7. Cumbuco, Northeast Brazil—and nearby Uruau are the best places to kitesurf in Brazil 
  8. Sotavento, Fuerteventura, Canary Islands – a 4km-long beach in Sotavento makes for an incredible kitesurfing backdrop
  9. Sal, Cape Verde, Africa—The Costa De Fragata is the best kitesurfing spot
  10. Cabarete, Dominican Republic—one of the most recommend locations 

Tip: Research the weather patterns in the location area and other conditions that may be relevant to your activity, before deciding to book your ticket.

Kitesurfer

FAQs of Learning how to Kitesurf 

If you are a beginner, here are some things to think about while getting started with kitesurfing.

What level of fitness do I need to kitesurf?

Contrary to common opinion, kitesurfing does not require extreme physical fitness. Girls, in particular, should not be scared off by the misconception that you must have enormous biceps to control your kite. It’s not only your arms that are under strain; the kite’s pull is transmitted through your harness and your whole body is affected. However, you must be comfortable in the water and have a good degree of fitness.

How much does it cost to begin kitesurfing?

You should budget around $1,000 to $3,000 USD for the new equipment, depending on the brand you choose. If you’re on a tighter budget, there are many used options available, but you must know is the year the kite was made. Older kites have less de-power (an important safety feature) and are more difficult to relaunch. You’ll also need a wetsuit, as well as a helmet and an impact and flotation vest. If you are purchasing these products new, you should exspect them to cost $300 to $400 USD altogether.

How long does learning to kitesurf take?

For the first few days, you’ll learn the basics of  kite flying. The basic kitesurfing skills can be learned in a week or two, and most people will be upwind riding in 6 to 8 weeks. Kitesurfing is one of those uncommon sports that is much easier than it appears.

Do I need kitesurfing lessons?

Don’t overlook this step! Taking lessons from a certified kitesurf instructor is without a doubt the greatest method to advance swiftly and securely. 

 

 

Gear Needed to get Started

When it comes to kitesurfing gear, there can be a lot to choose from. There are many great kites out there, but we want to cut through the noise and help you find the best gear for your needs. There are many factors you will have to consider when choosing the right gear. 

Kites

There are two main groups of  kitesurfing kites: inflatable kites and foil kites. Both are used in all kiteboarding disciplines, although inflatable kites are definitely more suited for kitesurfing in the waves, while foil kites work best in light winds. You can start with either one, but if you want to pursue higher levels, investing in both may be an option. 

Board 

When first learning, try to go with a bigger board in the beginning, as it will make it easier to ride upwind in lighter winds. A slightly larger board can also help you jump higher and progress faster as an intermediate and advanced kitesurfer, as it can build up more pressure for your jumps. Your instructor will help you find the perfect board for your skill level and body size. 

Safety Helmet

Helmets are a must to keep your head protected. There are helmets meant for water use and don’t have absorbent foam, while others are warmer and meant for land and snow use.

Harness

Always makes sure, regardless of any other factors, the harness fits you perfectly. If you can’t test before buying,  go with the one that feels most comfortable to you. Harnesses are not too expensive, so you can always purchase another one. 

Kite Bar

If possible, try to purchase all of your kites from one brand and a matching bar with it. You will only really need one bar for all of your kites. It is possible to use a kite bar from one brand with kites from a different brand, but it may not always fly perfectly due to the design. You can count on kites always flying best with the bar from the same brand. 

Water Boots

There is a huge selection of booties. Booties not only protect your feet from sharp rocks and coral reefs, but they are also designed to keep your feet nice and warm while kitesurfing.

Wetsuit

A  kitesurfing wetsuit will make your time on the water more comfortable. You don’t need to wear one each time, only when water temperatures drop below 65 degrees. A kitesurfing wetsuit will keep you warm and insulated while you enjoy your favorite sport.

Kitesurfer Angel

Time to Kitesurf!

So far, you’ve learned not only what kitesurfing is, where to kitesurf, the answers to the most common questions and the gear needed for kitesurfing. Pumped to get started? There’s a whole world to e discovered—and plenty of advanced maneuvers and tricks to master!

 

Kitesurfing is a great way to get outside and enjoy some time in nature. It’s also a fun sport for those who are familiar with surfing or wakeboarding and want something more challenging and exciting than what they’ve done before!

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