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Bad instructors - how to give advice on them

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Matteo V
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Bad instructors - how to give advice on them

Postby Matteo V » Sat Dec 16, 2017 4:10 pm

With the "Self Teaching" thread getting so much attention, how do you warn a newbie about the occasional TERRIBLE instructor out there? I mean, we all say go get lessons - which I agree with mostly (go to your first lesson with trainer kite skills), but how do we encourage someone who is discouraged with their first taste of the sport?

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Re: Bad instructors - how to give advice on them

Postby FLandOBX » Sat Dec 16, 2017 4:33 pm

It's a difficult question because many beginners get discouraged and aren't experienced enough to distinguish between bad instruction and the typical challenges inherent in learning the sport. Many (most?) beginners come to their first lesson expecting to ride within an hour or two. They'll say something like "I should pick this up quickly because I've done lots of [snowboarding, skateboarding, wakeboarding, water-skiing, sailing, windsurfing, stunt-kite-flying.......fill in the blank]." A lot of those people leave their first lesson frustrated, and many conclude that the instructor must have been bad, even if that's not the case. So I don't know how to answer your question, except to say that a good instructor needs to set (lower) expectations from the very beginning of the first lesson, or even earlier (i.e., when the lesson is being discussed before booking). And a good instructor then needs to make the lesson fun. If it's fun, a beginner may stick with the sport despite the initial learning curve.

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Re: Bad instructors - how to give advice on them

Postby Peert » Sat Dec 16, 2017 4:55 pm

When it comes to safety some of the (young) instructors of the most commercial kiteschools over here in the Netherlands have very limited awareness. It is for example not uncommon to spot total beginners having lessons with a handlepass leash attached to their back.
My girlfriend did some lessons in Portugal... (So I would not need to teach her in the cold NL...) The stories I heard on the safety situation during the lessons.... terrible. Too many total beginners in a very small lagoon for instance. Not surprisingly it ended with a damaged girlfriend...

But on topic: I tell the instructors where they can improve on safety....
"Tell your students to put their hands close together".

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Re: Bad instructors - how to give advice on them

Postby knotwindy » Sat Dec 16, 2017 5:00 pm

Most beaches have what, maybe 2 schools max in there area? If you are serious about this, go talk to them. Buy them breakfast while they are hanging around before lessons or a beer afterwards and find out who are the better instructors. It’s not hard to figure out and send beginners to them. If you don’t know the beaches, don’t offer advice but send them to someone who does that is not affiliated with the school.
Or tell them it is a dangerous, addictive & expensive sport and scare them off.✌️

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Re: Bad instructors - how to give advice on them

Postby ChickenD!ken » Sat Dec 16, 2017 5:05 pm

1.) Get back on the horse. Sorry if no one told you this was a dangerous sport (it only is if you don’t know what you’re doing) or if your kite school short changed you.

2.) Go to your local FB ‘where to surf’ group and find out when/where people are out. Then go talk to some kiteboarders. Even if you don’t make ‘friends’ get as much info as you can. Where to take lessons, what’s your next step, can you buddy up with someone etc..

3.) Book just one individual lesson and take it from there. Avoid group lessons altogether.

4.) Go have fun..

As for instructors who are awful, the marketplace tends to take care of most them, putting them out of business. Impossible to weed out all the shit ones.

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Re: Bad instructors - how to give advice on them

Postby Kau pi kite tarifa » Sun Dec 17, 2017 2:43 pm

Specifically for Tarifa, but applicable for any spot with many lessons going on: go and watch on the beach!

As a complete beginner, unknown to the sport, you are not able to spot all safety aspects. But you can already see big differences in how instructors work.

Even just seeing if an instructor is actually motivated makes a big difference.

Then in the end it is a personal choice. You will get the most progress if you feel comfortable with your instructor.

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