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Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

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Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby wardr77 » Tue Sep 09, 2014 9:59 pm

Ok I'm 43, weigh 88kgs and 6'5 tall so a bit of a thin lanky sort of bloke. I ride a twin tip with 7 and 10 RPM kites and a 12 Blade trigger for the lighter winds. I do the basic stuff :boost, kiteloop, kiteloop backloop, rolls and basic transitions.

Trouble is pain is becoming a more frequent feature for me now and I seem to be starting my sessions more often with painkillers so not a great sign. Left knee is often painful so that gets strapped and back will ache pretty badly after a session but more recently and more worryingly my hips are starting to pain me as well, particularly the left. As you can imagine I am a little concerned that I might well be setting myself up for a few problems later on in life.

So, before seeing the doc/physio, I have decided to either to give kitesurfing a break for a few months (highly demoralising), to allow healing and recovery, or get a surfboard (something I've been wanting to do for a while now) for the smaller stuff and general cruising around which I believe will be less demanding on the body thereby allowing recovery and keep me out on the water.

So my question is this : Is the surfboard assumption a correct or misguided one, and if correct any suggestions what size surfboard I should be looking at?

Many thanks in advance!

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby knotwindy » Tue Sep 09, 2014 10:33 pm

Yes, it is easier on your body especially the joints.
Any board from 5" 8" to 6'3" will work. Wider is better in the beginning 18" or more. Cheaper is better in the beginning, you will wreck it having fun.

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby mz16 » Tue Sep 09, 2014 10:58 pm

I am a bit younger than you, but between way too much basketball and too much kiting I have had some similar pain experience and I would definitely recommend getting a surfboard and getting into it. It is super fun and a lot easier on the body, though plenty of crashes so you will be sore in new ways :)

The one thing that you should really do is crosstrain, stablization exercises, squats, balance stuff. Stuff that will strengthen your core, knees, ankles, hips. Kiting hard and often can put a lot of strain in those areas.

Also stretch stretch stretch. Quads and hamstrings.. I used to have a lot of back pain but now i stretch my hamstrings in the hot shower for about 15 mins after sessions, and I sleep much better and have much less back pain. Get a foam roller and roll out any muscle knots/soreness in quads, hips and especially your IT band. Tight IT band can cause great pain over time in your knees, ankles and hips.

Its tough to make yourself do consistently but once you get into it, you will be amazed.

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby iblocalsurfer » Tue Sep 09, 2014 11:09 pm

Great advise so far. Never had any knee aliments until I started kiting(with straps). Got off the straps after about a year. Can kite for hours with not even the slightest ache in my knees. I've always had somewhat of a regular gym regimen so I'm sure that has also helped.

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby MACTNKA » Tue Sep 09, 2014 11:20 pm

Any surf would do for your rehab. If I were you though, I would also look into skimboarding, since they are generaly much easier to learn strapless free riding and freestyle on. They are also much cheaper, as ridgid as a twin tip and great for light wind cause they tend to have wide surface. Probably the biggest fun would be to learn handle passes on it since they spin a lot easier than other boards! Other helpful things for your rehab and general health would be to get a seat harness, it takes the pressure off your back completely, and a pump with only a downstroke. For example Kwik-Tek AHP-1 Airhead Hand Pump from Amazon for $14. The other thing I did for my own joint problems was to take Instaflex. With that combo you should be back on a twin tip in no time! And when you do get Boots! Good luck!

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby plummet » Wed Sep 10, 2014 12:14 am

I say no. A surf board is stiff and harsh. Particularly if you jump it and try and do the things you are currently doing. If you stop the impacting style of riding you are doing and mow the lawn on a surfboard sure it will be better. But if you did that on a tt you would get the same result.

I am 42, 83kg and have knee and hip pain from years of mountian biking and kiting.

I tried the surfboard route and found it worse. I have ended up on a high rocker rounded tip mutant, with flexible tips.

High rocker smooths landings and chop, tip flex smooths landings and chop. Rounded provide smooths chop. This style of board will be significantly better than a stiffer low rocker rectangular TT and it will be superior to any surfboard for smoothness. The down side to this design is it is power hungry. So it won't make for a light wind weapon.

The next this is the kite. Select a kite that floats you down rather than drops you fast. As an example an ozone edge gives a softer landing than an ozone C4. Select the kite for softer landings.

Lastly riding over powered really kills, knees/hips. Try for carefull selection of kites so you are not overpowered and hammering your body. In this regard a larger quiver gives you a better chance of being perfectly powered. I have a 5 kite quiver.

Also getting the softest footpads you can find helps too. Surfboards typically don't have much foam support underfoot.

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby Starsky » Wed Sep 10, 2014 12:46 am

I'm sure I'll have to give up the wake set up sometime in my 60's but plan on strapless surfboard action until my late 90's.

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby dyyylan » Wed Sep 10, 2014 1:07 am

the crosstraining is a great recommendation, it really does make a huge difference.

i've had mild knee issues since i was about 15 doing martial arts, never really started bothering me until i started kiting (actually, walking on uneven ground, ie walking upwind on the beach is what does it for me)

since I moved to hood river I've been mountain biking a lot, and my knee issues have pretty much disappeared. my legs are so much stronger now and i've hardly had any pain.

give it a shot if you can, worst case scenario you'll get in better shape :)

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby FredBGG » Wed Sep 10, 2014 1:16 am

A strapless surfboard will really help.

But not anything make by a kite company. They are far to heavy and stiff.

A used polyester board would have more flex and way cheaper.

IMO the very best surfboards for kiting and someone with aches and pains are the Aviso hollow carbon fiber boards. The have no core. Rge rails are very stiff so the boards are still very efficient, but the deck and hull flex a lot (compress). This produces a very smooth ride and smooths out chop.

Also don't ride the tail of the surfboard with your feet where they would be with straps. Ride the board furthur forward. This will reduce flapping and will straddle the chop better.

The best Aviso model for deck flex is the Aviso Lost Mayhem 6'6"

The Aviso Cole Fire Fly also has a very flexy deck.

Here is an animation of the flex pattern:

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Re: Is purchasing a surfboard a good way to recover... ?

Postby robertovillate » Wed Sep 10, 2014 2:04 am

What Fred said :thumb:

Strapless riding defo easier on the body, but you need to learn the proper technique too, so a brief time for the learning curve and you'll be grand.

I am 70kg and have a 5/8 Aviso Lost Round Nose Fish...and LOVE it. I have had this board for over 6 years and ridden the piss out of it all over the world, easily 500 sessions, lots of scratches (I have a painted version) but no dings! This board was made for surfing but it has been super durable. Would buy another in a heartbeat. This shape has a fair amount of volume so you don't need too long of a board. The deck is fairly wide so the board is super stable and footwork is super easy.

As Fred mentioned the deck of the Aviso boards "give" and they are super cush on the feet and legs...and the board rips in anything up to head + 1/2 surf...and also a sweet ride on flat water.
you can ride the Zone strapless, but this is basically my strapped board....for when it's nuking and really gnarly. My Zone is pretty small and switching stance on the fly is very tricky so I ride this board mostly goofy stance...and sometimes I will switch stance if I am trying to make bigger upwind gains on my port tacks.

One thing about riding strapless is that you won't be using the same muscles as with a TT, especially stomach muscles which get a huge workout when doing jumps and aerial don't let yourself lose that 6-pack...haha

The other thing that I feel is important is using kites that have easy bar pressure/steering because you will be riding one handed a lot with a surfboard...

lastly, if you are going the route of a surfboard that has strap option...just start will learn a lot faster and better technique and proper stance WITHOUT straps...just make sure your board has good deck traction, either good wax or a good pad.

I hope the strapless surfboard helps solve your problem!

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