KITESURFING TUTORIAL - THEORY/SAFETY/SETUP/TALK OF THE TRADE

SoulKite is a Kiteboarding Australia (KA) Affiliated School.

KA offer student membership to all our students, please sign-up below and select SoulKite as your School when filling out the online membership form.

Hello, congratulations on starting your journey as a kiteboarder. Before you begin, please ensure you register as a Kiteboarding Australia Student Member.

Student membership is an important step to take prior to commencing your lessons, it's important for your insurance coverage and will also allow KA to keep in touch regarding your development in the sport.

You will gain access to our online learning course, which will help you on your journey to becoming and independent kiteboarder.

To sign-up, please scan the QR code below or follow the link, with your mobile device and complete the online form. It will only take a couple of minutes.

We wish you the very best for your lessons and welcome you to the kiteboarding community.

Best Regards,
Kiteboarding Australia

https://mailchi.mp/kiteboardingaus.com.au/kiteboarding-australia-student-membership

WIND ORIENTATION/DIRECTION - THEORY

Wind orientation is the first information you want to have when you get to a kitesurfing spot. Which way is the wind blowing? Is it safe? What are the risks I'm taking if I go out in these conditions?

Below you will find the description of each wind direction and their pros and cons:

Side or Cross-shore wind: Wind is blowing parallel to the beach from one side or the other. Probably the best wind to kite in. It's always easy to come back to the shore body dragging.

Side or Cross-on-shore wind: Wind is blowing from the sea towards the land, from one side. Most convenient wind to teach in and probably the safest as you are going to kitesurf with a 45° angle to the beach and the wind blows you back to the beach if you quick-release your chicken loop.

On-shore wind: Wind is blowing from the water and is pushing you directly to the beach. One of the dangerous winds, it constantly pushes you straight onto the beach and to the hazards on land. For beginners, it's not the easiest wind when riding upwind hasn't been mastered yet.
Off-shore wind: Wind is blowing from the land to the water and is pushing you away from the land. It's a dangerous wind because it blows you into the sea. If you have to quick-release your chicken loop, you will have to packdown in the water and swim back in order to come back to the beach.
Side or Cross-off-shore wind: Wind is blowing from the land towards the sea from one side and is pushing you away from the land. One of the best winds for advanced riders. It creates butter flat water and it's not too complicated to come back to shore even though you lose quite a lot of ground coming back in body dragging.

 When Kiting, you can have different riding directions:

  • Riding upwind (towards the wind)
  • Riding crosswind (with 90 degrees to the wind)
  • Riding downwind (follow the wind) 

 

KITESURF WIND WINDOW - THEORY

 

 

The wind window is the area where where you can fly your kite. This is a three-dimensional half-dome. You have 3 different areas in the wind window: the edge of the window (green), the intermediate zone (orange), the power zone (red)

The Edge of the window

What you want to do is find the right combination of power and handling. You pull the bar as far towards you so the back lines have enough tension to control the kite safely. Too much tension and the kite is a lot faster and more powerful

The Power zone

The power zone is the area, when you fly the kite, and the wind is coming from your back, the lowest in front of you. This is the area where your kite will be the most powerful. Be careful, this is a dangerous position if you are not riding and looking for more power. When you are walking upwind, launching, or landing you kite, avoid this area. In light wind, you may need to send your kite in the power zone to generate enough power to stand up on your board and go for your first kiteboarding ride.

The intermediate zone

The intermediate zone, on the wind window, is the area with less power than the power zone, and more than the edge of the window.This is located at the top and sides of the wind window, with the yelow color.

During your kite surfing lessons, you will learn the first hour how to fly the kite in the wind window, and most important, you will feel the difference between these three different positions.


KITESURFING SAFETY SYSTEMS - THEORY

Safety system kitesurfing 

When you learn kitesurfing, the first thing you will go through will be the safety systems of your kite. Since 2007, all kites have 3 safety systems. Be sure every time you fly a kite that you are familiar with the safety system as the operation my differ slightly from brand to brand. If you buy a kite, make sure you have the latest safety equipment on it. We always recommend purchasing equipment not older than 4 years since its manufacture.

  1. Let go of the bar

In most of the situations, letting go off your bar will be enough to be safe. That is always the first thing to do. If you let go off the bar, the kite will fall into the water, and will lose 90% of its power.

  1. Open the quick release (release the chicken loop)

Once you let go off the bar, if the kite is still pulling you, and you feel in danger, you can release the chicken loop. In this case, you will be connected to your kite only with the safety line, and the kite loose 100% of its power.

  1. Open the safety leash

The last safety system is to open the safety leash. Once you let go off the bar, then quick release, you might want to be totally disconnected to your kite, if you still feel you are in danger.

2-Self rescue kitesurfing

The self-rescue is the technique that must be done, at least a couple of times before you go kiting by your own (although we always recommend kiting with a buddy). This is the only way to recover safely in case the wind dies, and you need to recover your kite and return to the beach. You will also use the self-rescue if you have dangerous situation, or even if you want to land by yourself.

During your 5hours course at SoulKite, you will perform at least 1 self-rescue with a qualified instructor. The best is to do it in shallow water to understand the process, and then to do the exercise in deep water.

Here the steps to perform a self-rescue:

  • Let go off your bar, and wait for your kite to fall into the water
  • Release the push away EJECT system on the chickenloop. You will then be connected to your kite only with the safety line and your leash. The kite will be on the water, with the leading edge facing to you, with no power.
  • Go hand over hand down the safety line until you reach your bar. Then quickly wrap the safety line around the backside of the bar.
  • Once the safety line is wrapped around the bar, you can wrap your lines around your bar (the same way as you were packing your kite equipment, figure of 8) until you can reach your kite.
  • Once you reach your kite, disconnect your leash and connect it to your kite leading edge. You have now free hands to turn your kite over in the water, secure your bar and board, take off your harness and use the kite as a sail/boat to come back to the shore or swim, either using kicking from under the kite in the water holding the leading edge or paddling from lying inside the kite.

3-Safety equipment kitesurfing

You have finished your lessons and you want to go to practice kitesurfing on the best spots of Western Australia. Please make sure you have:

1- Kitesurfing Line Knife, which will allow you to cut lines it they ever are wrapped around you. Your harness should have a spot to carry a kite line knife.

2- Kitesurfing Helmet, which will protect your head in case of impact on the beach, or on the water with your board or another kite surfer.

3- Kitesurfing Floatation Vest or Impact Vest, which will protect your body in case of impact on the beach, or on the water with your board or another kite surfer.

4- Kite Leash, which comes with your bar. Make sure you connect your leash in front of your harness. If you connect it to your back (handle-pass leash), you might get in trouble when trying to reach it. 

If you have any questions on how to fly your kite in the wind window, feel free to contact us anytime or by email info@soulkiteaustralia.com

More information on Kitesurfing lessons



KITESURFING RIGHT OF WAY RULES - THEORY

What are the right of way rules? How to act when a spot gets busy. Check out the kitesurfing right of way rules that apply.
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Golden Rule: Upwind kite High, Downwind kite Low.
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Rider entering the water has right of way.
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Starboard rider (Righthand forward) has right of way on a collision course.

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Slower riders have priority.

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Rider on a wave always has priority.

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Give way to other water users.

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Respect safety zone when jumping.

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No priority on land - use common sense
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The first and most important rule of Kiteboarding - AVOID COLLISIONS at all costs

This means if you are unsure at anytime, STOP or TURN AROUND to avoid entering into a potentially  dangerous situation.

Any kite gear lost on the water should be reported to WA Water Police on  94428600, ASAP.

Lost gear can trigger very expensive search and rescue operations that could lead to Kitesurfing being held by authorities as a sport that

isn't practiced by responsible people with community interests at heart.