Kiteboarding Kitesurfing rules Right of way

The purpose of this Code is the improvement of safety standards and the standardization of the rules of the road for kiteboarding – kitesurfing. The Rules of the Code are based on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (ColRegs), state regulations, yachting rules and generally accepted regulations operating in the kiteboarding and kitesurfing world.

Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules
Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules susi may kite beach photo zanzibar

The Code applies to all persons practicing kitesurfing on any body of water. The Rules do not replace any special regulations concerning specific situations or kitesurfing spots such as reservoirs, rivers, overcrowded spots, or kitesurfing competitions.

If you are a visiting kiter or new to a launch site, ALWAYS introduce yourself to the locals, inquire about any hazards and local guidelines for the area.

 

Rule 1 – Responsibility
1.1.  All hazards and special circumstances shall be taken into account when applying these Rules, which may mean a departure from them if deemed necessary in order to avoid a collision.
1.2. Every rider shall be aware of kitesurfing dangers to him/her and others in his/her vicinity. The rider is liable for all damage caused by him/her and his/her equipment.
1.3. Every rider shall obey the local rules which may override these Rules.
1.4. Kiteboarders sometimes depend on each other on the water, and it is the duty of every rider to give all possible assistance to anyone in danger. Kiters have been known to perform many heroic rescues, however, if you are not experienced enough for an effective rescue, you may find yourself in danger as well.

Rule 2 – Definitions
2.1. Port tack – the wind blows from the left side in relation to the sailing direction, and the left hand is the front one, so-called “port”.
2.2. Starboard tack – the wind blows from the right in relation to the sailing direction, and the right hand is the front one, so-called “starboard”.
2.3. Windward rider – a rider sailing closer to the “source” of wind; sailing “above” in relation to another rider during the meeting, so-called “upwind rider”.
2.4. Leeward rider – a rider sailing further from the “source” of wind; sailing “below” in relation to another rider during the meeting, so-called “downwind rider”.
2.5. Give-way maneuver – an alternation of course or speed carried out to avoid a collision by a give-way rider.
2.6. Give-way rider – a rider obliged to give way during the meeting.
2.7. Stand-on rider – a rider who has right of way and is obliged to maintain his/her course during the meeting.
2.8. Maneuver – a jump, a trick, or a change of course or speed.
2.9. Meeting – a situation on the water when riders meet each other and one of them must give way in order to avoid a dangerous situation or collision.
2.10. Dangerous situation – a situation which endangers both users in the water and on the shore. A development of a dangerous situation leads to a collision.
2.11. Collision – a situation when riders, or their equipment, collide or they collide with other users on water or ashore.
2.12. Safe distance – a distance that shall be maintained in order to avoid a dangerous situation.
2.13. Kitesurfing on waves – surfing on breaking waves usually in a shore-break zone, so-called „wave”.

2.14. Good Kitesurfing Practice (GKP) – a set of generally accepted principles of safety, based on many years in kitesurfing community.
3.3. A rider who is in the water, holding a kite at zenith(12:00), swimming to a lost board, or re-launching a kite from the water has the right of way.

Rule 4-  On The Water
4.1. Head-on situation (opposite tacks) – a port tack rider gives way to a starboard tack rider.
4.2. Similar courses (same tacks) – a windward rider gives way to a leeward rider.
4.3. Overtaking – anyone overtaking (faster) keeps out of way of anyone being overtaken (slower).
4.4. Position of kites during the meeting – a windward rider raises his/her kite above 45 degrees and a leeward rider lowers his/her kite below 30 degrees.

Rule 5 – Multiperson meeting (Rule 4 is not applicable)
5.1. The most upwind rider raises his/her kite to the highest point and the most downwind rider lowers his/her kite to the lowest point. Other riders passing between the riders at the extremes set their kites in intermediate positions in order to avoid kite tangling.
5.2. It is recommended that meetings involving more than two riders be avoided whenever possible.

Rule 6 – Jumping
6.1. Before performing any maneuver, ensure that such an action will not endanger anyone.
6.2. The downwind area for a landing place shall be checked before commencing a jump.
6.3. In particular it is recommended to double check the area “behind” before performing a manoeuvre.

Rule 7 – Surfing on waves – Wave (Rules 4 & 5 are not applicable)
7.1. A rider surfing on waves has right of way irrespective of tack.
7.2. If there are two or more riders on the same wave, right of way has a rider surfing closer to the breaking part of the wave or a rider who got first on the wave.

Rule 8 – Action by a give-way rider
8.1. A safe distance shall be maintained during a give-way manoeuvre.
8.2. Any action taken to avoid a collision shall be positive, readily visible to others and made in ample time and with due regard to the rules applicable on the water.

Rule 9 – Action by a stand-on rider
9.1. A stand-on rider shall maintain his/her course until collision is unavoidable without his/her own manoeuvre.
9.2. The same rider shall fly his/her kite in a position specified by Rule 4.4.
9.3. This Rule does not relieve a give-way rider of his/her obligation of giving way.

Rule 10 – Meeting with other water users (not being kitesurfers or windsurfers)
Every kitesurfer gives way to all other water users except the power-driven crafts under 7 metres. It is recommended that passing and overtaking of such water users should take place on their leeside and at a safe distance.
On the Beach

 

kiteboarding rules on the beach Adlow and len ten
kiteboarding rules on the beach Aaron Hadlow and Ruben lenten rigging kite on beach south africa

Please do not fly your kite on crowded beaches. There are many uncrowded places around here to ride, give us a shout and we’ll help you find a good spot!

  • If you are a newer kiter, a visiting kiter, or just new to the launch site, please introduce yourself to the local kiters and inquire about local conditions, hazards and regulations. This is common courtesy on any beach, and goes a long way with the locals.
  • Always wind up your lines when your kite is on the beach.
  • Do not hang around the launch area with your kite in the air- “Keep it Low and Go!”
  • Observe the “flow” of traffic before you launch your kite. You will notice “lanes” of upwind and downwind riders sharing the same areas. There’s also usually a freestyle area and lesson area, so get familiar with what’s going on in the water before you launch.
  • Give immediate assistance to kiters launching and landing. If someone is coming in towards the beach and tapping their head, they need to land their kite ASAP. If you are able, please assist them and stay with the kite until it is secured with sand or a board.
  • Before launching do a preflight check of all safety releases. An improperly rigged safety can kill you. You should have a minimum of 2 quick releases on your system- 1 for releasing the kite from you to the leash, and 1 for releasing the entire rig.
  • Do not use a kite without a leash or lacking a proper safety system.
  • Launch kite towards the water whenever possible.
  • Do not fly your kite over beach goers, swimmers, or surfers.
  • Do not launch or land UPWIND of anything that can hurt you or sue you.
  • Do not use an inexperienced person to launch or land your kite.
  • If you take on the responsibility of catching someone’s kite, make sure to stay with it until they weight it down with a board or something. Do not leave the kite unattended as it may take off unexpectedly.

 

On the Water

kiteboarding rules on the water
kiteboarding rules on the water girl kiteboarding

GIVE WAY TO ALL WATER USERS, INCLUDING SWIMMERS, SURFERS, AND BOATERS. NO EXCEPTIONS!

PLEASE DO NOT KITE IN THE SWIM AREAS ALONG ANY OF OUR BEACHES!

  • Always stay 300 ft. or 3 line lengths away from shore, especially in onshore winds.
  • Always stay out of swim areas. New kiters should body drag out past the swim area to start, especially in onshore winds.
  • Please give extra room to instructors with students and new kiters.
  • Kiters launching and entering the water have right of way over kiters already on the water.
  • Kiter on Starboard tack (RIGHT hand forward) has the right of way.
  • Upwind rider- Kite HIGH
  • Downwind rider- Kite LOW
  • Slapping hands with another kiter is not fun when someone loses their edge and crashes into you. Save the hand slapping for the beach!

When Jumping

Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules jumping
Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules jumping
  • Look all around you before you jump, make sure you have a clear area downwind of you and make sure that you will not land on, or near anyone, or in their path. Now send it!
  • Jumps and Transitions should be done a safe distance from shore and NEVER near swimmers, surfers, windsurfers, boats, fishermen, etc. This is the single biggest problem in this sport and many areas are being banned for the actions of a few. Please stay out of the swim areas everywhere you ride, and do not jump or transition near shore.

Kiteboarding self Rescue

Kiteboarding self Rescue photo kite kiteboarder

Kiteboarding self Rescue photo kite kiteboarder

In kiting, there WILL become a time when you run into a bad situation. Gear failure or sudden weather changes are two examples where knowing what to do in an emergency can save your life!

Be sure to practice this with each kite you own, as all kites have slight differences and require different hand positioning for an effective rescue.

Safety Tips

  • NEVER GO OUT FURTHER THAT YOU CAN SWIM!
  • NEVER DEFLATE YOUR KITE UNLESS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY!
  • DO NOT RIDE WITHOUT A KITE KNIFE!
  • HELMET AND FLOTATION RECOMMENDED!
  • ONE PUMP USERS: ALWAYS LOCK OFF YOUR STRUTS WHEN SETTING UP!
  • AVOID KITING ALONE!

Here’s 3 Methods of Self Rescue:

Standard Self Rescue

Activate safety system to flag the kite out on one line

Pull yourself up the line to the bar

Wrap (the line you just pulled yourself to the bar with) at least one kite length (20-30’)on the bar to prevent relaunch, then wrap the rest of the lines until you reach the kite.

If able, detach the lines from the kite and stow the bar.

Grab what will be your UPPER wingtip or bridle, (depending on direction of travel) and work your way to other wingtip by sliding leading edge under your arm with the other hand. (hold bridle and push L.E. away from you)

Fill the sail with wind to pull yourself back to shore.

Practice this on the beach, or in shallow water to find correct hand positioning-BEFORE YOU NEED IT!

Offshore/Upwind Method

This technique works very well if caught in offshore winds, or for going upwind to retrieve your board.

Remember: NEVER deflate your kite unless absolutely necessary!

This technique also keeps you more visible to rescue personnel.

Here’s how you do it: lay on leading edge of kite (wingtips in the air), with legs extended down center strut. At this point, your upper body will be hanging over the leading edge, so you can easily overhand swim or “dog paddle” to your board.

From there you can swim to shore or use traditional self rescue technique.

Both methods should be known and practiced before you need them.

Raft Method

Use this method if your leading edge deflates.

This will happen if the leading edge bladder pops or the deflate valve opens, so make sure to lock down those velcro tabs around the valves! If you remembered to lock down your one pump strut clips, there will still be air in the struts.

Roll the kite ends to middle and secure it into a “raft” with your leash, harness, lines, or whatever you have.

If you didn’t lock off your struts, you will have a nice long swim with a giant sea anchor, or be kissing your kite goodbye.LOCK DOWN YOUR STRUTS!

The author of these rules ,Marek Rowinski, hopes that the work presented above will be widely accepted and will improve safety in kitesurfing.content : kiteboardingtampabay.com

Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules

The purpose of this Code is the improvement of safety standards and the standardization of the rules of the road for kitesurfing. The Rules of the Code are based on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (ColRegs), state regulations, yachting rules and generally accepted regulations operating in the kiteboarding and kitesurfing  world.

Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules

Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules susi may kite beach photo zanzibar

The Code applies to all persons practicing kitesurfing on any body of water. The Rules do not replace any special regulations concerning specific situations or kitesurfing spots such as reservoirs, rivers, overcrowded spots, or kitesurfing competitions.

If you are a visiting kiter or new to a launch site, ALWAYS introduce yourself to the locals, inquire about any hazards and local guidelines for the area.

Rule 1 – Responsibility
1.1.  All hazards and special circumstances shall be taken into account when applying these Rules, which may mean a departure from them if deemed necessary in order to avoid a collision.
1.2. Every rider shall be aware of kitesurfing dangers to him/her and others in his/her vicinity. The rider is liable for all damage caused by him/her and his/her equipment.
1.3. Every rider shall obey the local rules which may override these Rules.
1.4. Kiteboarders sometimes depend on each other on the water, and it is the duty of every rider to give all possible assistance to anyone in danger. Kiters have been known to perform many heroic rescues, however, if you are not experienced enough for an effective rescue, you may find yourself in danger as well.

Rule 2 – Definitions
2.1. Port tack – the wind blows from the left side in relation to the sailing direction, and the left hand is the front one, so-called “port”.
2.2. Starboard tack – the wind blows from the right in relation to the sailing direction, and the right hand is the front one, so-called “starboard”.
2.3. Windward rider – a rider sailing closer to the “source” of wind; sailing “above” in relation to another rider during the meeting, so-called “upwind rider”.
2.4. Leeward rider – a rider sailing further from the “source” of wind; sailing “below” in relation to another rider during the meeting, so-called “downwind rider”.
2.5. Give-way maneuver – an alternation of course or speed carried out to avoid a collision by a give-way rider.
2.6. Give-way rider – a rider obliged to give way during the meeting.
2.7. Stand-on rider – a rider who has right of way and is obliged to maintain his/her course during the meeting.
2.8. Maneuver – a jump, a trick, or a change of course or speed.
2.9. Meeting – a situation on the water when riders meet each other and one of them must give way in order to avoid a dangerous situation or collision.
2.10. Dangerous situation – a situation which endangers both users in the water and on the shore. A development of a dangerous situation leads to a collision.
2.11. Collision – a situation when riders, or their equipment, collide or they collide with other users on water or ashore.
2.12. Safe distance – a distance that shall be maintained in order to avoid a dangerous situation.
2.13. Kitesurfing on waves – surfing on breaking waves usually in a shore-break zone, so-called „wave”.

2.14. Good Kitesurfing Practice (GKP) – a set of generally accepted principles of safety, based on many years in kitesurfing community.
3.3. A rider who is in the water, holding a kite at zenith(12:00), swimming to a lost board, or re-launching a kite from the water has the right of way.

Rule 4-  On The Water
4.1. Head-on situation (opposite tacks) – a port tack rider gives way to a starboard tack rider.
4.2. Similar courses (same tacks) – a windward rider gives way to a leeward rider.
4.3. Overtaking – anyone overtaking (faster) keeps out of way of anyone being overtaken (slower).
4.4. Position of kites during the meeting – a windward rider raises his/her kite above 45 degrees and a leeward rider lowers his/her kite below 30 degrees.

Rule 5 – Multiperson meeting (Rule 4 is not applicable)
5.1. The most upwind rider raises his/her kite to the highest point and the most downwind rider lowers his/her kite to the lowest point. Other riders passing between the riders at the extremes set their kites in intermediate positions in order to avoid kite tangling.
5.2. It is recommended that meetings involving more than two riders be avoided whenever possible.

Rule 6 – Jumping
6.1. Before performing any maneuver, ensure that such an action will not endanger anyone.
6.2. The downwind area for a landing place shall be checked before commencing a jump.
6.3. In particular it is recommended to double check the area “behind” before performing a manoeuvre.

Rule 7 – Surfing on waves – Wave (Rules 4 & 5 are not applicable)
7.1. A rider surfing on waves has right of way irrespective of tack.
7.2. If there are two or more riders on the same wave, right of way has a rider surfing closer to the breaking part of the wave or a rider who got first on the wave.

Rule 8 – Action by a give-way rider
8.1. A safe distance shall be maintained during a give-way manoeuvre.
8.2. Any action taken to avoid a collision shall be positive, readily visible to others and made in ample time and with due regard to the rules applicable on the water.

Rule 9 – Action by a stand-on rider
9.1. A stand-on rider shall maintain his/her course until collision is unavoidable without his/her own manoeuvre.
9.2. The same rider shall fly his/her kite in a position specified by Rule 4.4.
9.3. This Rule does not relieve a give-way rider of his/her obligation of giving way.

Rule 10 – Meeting with other water users (not being kitesurfers or windsurfers)
Every kitesurfer gives way to all other water users except the power-driven crafts under 7 metres. It is recommended that passing and overtaking of such water users should take place on their leeside and at a safe distance.


On the Beach

 

kiteboarding rules on the beach Adlow and len ten

kiteboarding rules on the beach Aaron Hadlow and Ruben lenten rigging kite on beach south africa

Please do not fly your kite on crowded beaches. There are many uncrowded places around here to ride, give us a shout and we’ll help you find a good spot!

  • If you are a newer kiter, a visiting kiter, or just new to the launch site, please introduce yourself to the local kiters and inquire about local conditions, hazards and regulations. This is common courtesy on any beach, and goes a long way with the locals.
  • Always wind up your lines when your kite is on the beach.
  • Do not hang around the launch area with your kite in the air- “Keep it Low and Go!”
  • Observe the “flow” of traffic before you launch your kite. You will notice “lanes” of upwind and downwind riders sharing the same areas. There’s also usually a freestyle area and lesson area, so get familiar with what’s going on in the water before you launch.
  • Give immediate assistance to kiters launching and landing. If someone is coming in towards the beach and tapping their head, they need to land their kite ASAP. If you are able, please assist them and stay with the kite until it is secured with sand or a board.
  • Before launching do a preflight check of all safety releases. An improperly rigged safety can kill you. You should have a minimum of 2 quick releases on your system- 1 for releasing the kite from you to the leash, and 1 for releasing the entire rig.
  • Do not use a kite without a leash or lacking a proper safety system.
  • Launch kite towards the water whenever possible.
  • Do not fly your kite over beach goers, swimmers, or surfers.
  • Do not launch or land UPWIND of anything that can hurt you or sue you.
  • Do not use an inexperienced person to launch or land your kite.
  • If you take on the responsibility of catching someone’s kite, make sure to stay with it until they weight it down with a board or something. Do not leave the kite unattended as it may take off unexpectedly.

 

On the Water

kiteboarding rules on the water

kiteboarding rules on the water girl kiteboarding

GIVE WAY TO ALL WATER USERS, INCLUDING SWIMMERS, SURFERS, AND BOATERS. NO EXCEPTIONS!

PLEASE DO NOT KITE IN THE SWIM AREAS ALONG ANY OF OUR BEACHES!

  • Always stay 300 ft. or 3 line lengths away from shore, especially in onshore winds.
  • Always stay out of swim areas. New kiters should body drag out past the swim area to start, especially in onshore winds.
  • Please give extra room to instructors with students and new kiters.
  • Kiters launching and entering the water have right of way over kiters already on the water.
  • Kiter on Starboard tack (RIGHT hand forward) has the right of way.
  • Upwind rider- Kite HIGH
  • Downwind rider- Kite LOW
  • Slapping hands with another kiter is not fun when someone loses their edge and crashes into you. Save the hand slapping for the beach!

When Jumping

Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules jumping

Kiteboarding Kitesurfing Right of way rules jumping

  • Look all around you before you jump, make sure you have a clear area downwind of you and make sure that you will not land on, or near anyone, or in their path. Now send it!
  • Jumps and Transitions should be done a safe distance from shore and NEVER near swimmers, surfers, windsurfers, boats, fishermen, etc. This is the single biggest problem in this sport and many areas are being banned for the actions of a few. Please stay out of the swim areas everywhere you ride, and do not jump or transition near shore.

Kiteboarding self Rescue

Kiteboarding self Rescue photo kite kiteboarder

Kiteboarding self Rescue photo kite kiteboarder

In kiting, there WILL become a time when you run into a bad situation. Gear failure or sudden weather changes are two examples where knowing what to do in an emergency can save your life!

Be sure to practice this with each kite you own, as all kites have slight differences and require different hand positioning for an effective rescue.

Safety Tips

  • NEVER GO OUT FURTHER THAT YOU CAN SWIM!
  • NEVER DEFLATE YOUR KITE UNLESS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY!
  • DO NOT RIDE WITHOUT A KITE KNIFE!
  • HELMET AND FLOTATION RECOMMENDED!
  • ONE PUMP USERS: ALWAYS LOCK OFF YOUR STRUTS WHEN SETTING UP!
  • AVOID KITING ALONE!

Here’s 3 Methods of Self Rescue:

Standard Self Rescue

Activate safety system to flag the kite out on one line

Pull yourself up the line to the bar

Wrap (the line you just pulled yourself to the bar with) at least one kite length (20-30’)on the bar to prevent relaunch, then wrap the rest of the lines until you reach the kite.

If able, detach the lines from the kite and stow the bar.

Grab what will be your UPPER wingtip or bridle, (depending on direction of travel) and work your way to other wingtip by sliding leading edge under your arm with the other hand. (hold bridle and push L.E. away from you)

Fill the sail with wind to pull yourself back to shore.

Practice this on the beach, or in shallow water to find correct hand positioning-BEFORE YOU NEED IT!

Offshore/Upwind Method

This technique works very well if caught in offshore winds, or for going upwind to retrieve your board.

Remember: NEVER deflate your kite unless absolutely necessary!

This technique also keeps you more visible to rescue personnel.

Here’s how you do it: lay on leading edge of kite (wingtips in the air), with legs extended down center strut. At this point, your upper body will be hanging over the leading edge, so you can easily overhand swim or “dog paddle” to your board.

From there you can swim to shore or use traditional self rescue technique.

Both methods should be known and practiced before you need them.

Raft Method

Use this method if your leading edge deflates.

This will happen if the leading edge bladder pops or the deflate valve opens, so make sure to lock down those velcro tabs around the valves! If you remembered to lock down your one pump strut clips, there will still be air in the struts.

Roll the kite ends to middle and secure it into a “raft” with your leash, harness, lines, or whatever you have.

If you didn’t lock off your struts, you will have a nice long swim with a giant sea anchor, or be kissing your kite goodbye.LOCK DOWN YOUR STRUTS!

The author of these rules ,Marek Rowinski, hopes that the work presented above will be widely accepted and will improve safety in kitesurfing.content : kiteboardingtampabay.com

Naish Kiteboarding Video – WELCOME TO 2013 – S02E08

Welcome to the world of Naish; A world of dreams and adrenaline, fun, family and friends. A world where high tech materials and designs meet real world testing to give you the best possible boardriding experience.

DIRECTOR: Andi Jansen
FILMERS : Andi Jansen / Olivier Sautet (additional footages)
EDITER : Andi Jansen / Olivier Sautet (Title)
RIDERS: Jalou Langeree, Sam Light, Rick Jensen, Jesse Richman, Shawn Richman, Kai Lenny
KITES: 2013 Kite Collection
BOARDS: 2013 Kiteboard Collection
HARNESSES: 2013 Harness Collection

how to learn Kitesurf kiteboard in a Day Zero to Hero power window…

It takes most people between 15 and 20 hours of practice spread over several weeks to learn how to kitesurf. But, occasionally, an exceptionally motivated individual is able to go from ‘zero to hero’. That is: learn to kitesurf in one day.

When I decided to write this article on how to kitesurf I didn’t want to waste any time. Being an experienced wakeboarder and snowboarder, as well as having some experience surfing and windsurfing, I figured I was as good a candidate as anyone to go from zero to hero. Although in my relatively short seven-hour lesson I never quite got up on a board, I did learn what it takes to learn to kitesurf, and it’s really not that difficult.

My instructor, Joe Rueger of the Tainan Kitesurfing Center, walked me through the following steps.

Lesson 1: The Basics
First you have to learn the proper kitesurfing terminology so that your instructor can communicate instructions to you clearly. This includes a few pieces of equipment and kite positions.

Equipment
Kite – Used to harness the power of the wind and pull you across the water. smaller, foil kites or inflatable trainer

Harness – Attaches you to the kite.

Power Bar – Allows you to steer the kite and control the power or ‘pull’ of the kite.

Board – The board that you stand on as you zip across the water. Similar in size and shape to a wakeboard.

Bindings – The foot holders that attach you to the board.

Kite Positions – power window Horizontal (see fig. 1)

As with flying any kite, when kitesurfing you always stand with your back to the wind. If you are facing the same direction as the wind, the position of the kite from left to right is discussed in terms as if you are standing in the center of a large clock and the kite is near one of the numbers. Straight ahead is 12:00 and 90-degrees to your right is 3:00. To your left 90-degrees is also 12:00. The kite will always remain between 9:00 and 3:00 because if it goes any farther the wind will no longer hold it aloft.

Kite Positions – Vertical (see fig. 2)


The position of the kite on the vertical plane is discussed in terms of degrees; the ground being zero degrees, and directly above your head being 90-degrees.

Lesson 2: Power Positions (see fig. 1 & 2)

Once you know how to discuss the position of the kite, it’s time to learn the significance of the positions. This is important because the position of the kite determines the strength of the pull, or power, of the kite.

The formula for power positions is basically this. The most powerful possible position is when the kite is at 12:00 (directly in front of you), at a 45-degree angle – pretty much the center of the kite’s field of movement. The farther you move away from this position in any direction the less power the kite will have. If you place the kite at any extreme – 3:00, 9:00, 90-degrees, or zero degrees – it will have barely enough power to stay aloft.

Lesson 3: Controlling the Kite
Next, to learn how to control the position and power of the kite, you will start practicing with a trainer kite on the beach. The trainer is a miniature kitesurfing kite that maneuvers just like a real one, but that is too small to pull you anywhere.

You’re first attached to the kite by a harness. Your control over the kite comes in the form of a bar about 80 cm long that you hold onto like a set of handlebars. This bar controls the direction of the kite, as well as the power. The ends of the bar are attached by strings to the corners of the kite and the bar pivots on the main cord that attaches your harness to the kite. When you pull in on one side of the bar, the kite will turn in that direction.

The bar also moves towards and away from you along the cord that attaches your harness to the kite. Holding the bar midway between yourself and the stopper will keep the kite at full power. If you pull the whole bar towards you, or let the bar all the way out, it will de-power the kite. This is a failsafe for people who feel out of control. If you panic and let go of the bar and the kite completely de-powers.

Lesson 4: Sand Skiing
Once you’ve got the hang of the trainer kite, it’s time to strap on the big boy and try dragging yourself across the beach. First, you strap into a real kite. Then, you practice moving the through low-power positions. Then, when you’re ready you move the kite into a power position. It will jerk you forward and then, leaning back against the pull of the kite, you will ski briefly across the sand. Don’t worry, you won’t be pulled far. It’s very hard to keep the kite in a power position in this exercise. You’ll move the kite through the power position, and then out do a de-powered position, so the pull will only last a moment or two. This exercise teaches you where the power really is, and how it feels to be pulled.

Lesson 5: Body Dragging

The next step is just to get comfortable with a kite in the water. This is basically the same as sand skiing, except you’re dragging yourself through the water. You just move the kite in and out of power positions, pulling yourself along through the surf.

Lesson 6: Kite Surfing Kiteboarding

This is it. You’ve mastered all the techniques. Now it’s time to strap on the board. To start you sit in the water with the board on, keeping the board near the surface of the water, just like starting on water skis or a wakeboard. Then you put the kite in the air, and move it into a power position. The pull of the kite should pull you up out of the water and, as you lean back, keeping the board’s edge in the water, you’ll start moving. And that’s it – you’re kteboarding.