Hello everybody. I just recently got a bit of a bug to give kiteboarding a try and I thought I would come here to get some advice on how to get started. A little about me. I live in northwest Ohio so my primary riding would be maumee bay on lake erie. I have been flying powered paragliders for over a year now and I have about 100 hours in the air. I have been around watersports as long as I can remember and I am very comfortable on a wakeboard. I think it would be kind of cool to combine these two hobbies a little and I think my experience should help the learning curve for this. I think this will be a great way to harness the air when it isn't suitable for flying a paraglider. My main interest is getting air . . safely.
At this point I have a few people I want to call as well as a local shop called red sky that sells equipment that I would like to check out. I am also looking for advice on how to get started and I'll be honest I am a bargain hunter. This is by no means my only or main hobby so I don't really care if I have the absolute latest and greatest. I'd like to find a used set up to get started with but I have no idea what kind or brands of gear is most suitable for myself, my interests, and my area. Thanks for any help and where might I better post this last paragraph? I hate to be asking to many questions in an intro area! Thanks
take lessons from a reputable, certified level two instructor (unfortunately there are too many sketchy certified instructors out there, sad but true).
take lessons in waist deep water if you can ... you can learn in deep water, but much more of a challenge ... make sure you're taught how to rig a kite, self-rescue, and body drag upwind.
make sure your water start lesson has boat/jetski support, unless it's shallow water at least a half mile from shore and a mile or so downwind from your launch point.
continue to invest in lessons until you can come back to shore, at will, from your out tack ... even if you're butt check turning and and getting blown downwind ... by the time you get to this point, your kite control confidence should be there.
if you're still pumped about kiteboarding after the above benchmark, then invest in gear ... last season's gear on sale is the best way to go, unless you can inspect used gear (no more than two years old) in person.
me: kiting since 2001 and iko and pasa level 2 instructor. hope this helps.
Thanks that is some good info. I did go and talk to my local shop today. Unfortunately, but not surprising, they are no longer doing lessons this season due to the cold weather and water. Fortunately I will be in Orlando/Cocoa beach on vacation for five days in two weeks so I think I am going to take the lessons down there. I talked to they guys that work out of the Ron Jon shop down there and near as I can tell reputable and they do have a support boat. I am sure they move a lot more students than the local place up here. I am planning on learning down there and than hopefully if all goes well get gear and start playing around with it up here. Also my friend that I am visiting down there has access to some gear so we will be able to play around with it after the lessons down there. Obviously I need to be very comfortable with everything before thinking about getting in the 55 degree water up here (I do have wetsuits and cold water gear).
I picked up a magazine and have been watching a lot of videos and I am getting pumped. I have a sailboat and I enjoy harnessing the wind with that regard and in addition to the paragliding and wakeboarding this really should be a combining of a lot of things I enjoy. I cannot imagine I won't get addicted!
good plan, see you on the water if you ever make it to brest or metro in Michigan. There was no snow kiting season last year (I blame global warming), and it's a loooong wait until April. In January last year I was still crunching my way through the skim ice out to the water.
the only thing; many bargain hunters are winding up with older kites that are really not the best to get you started fast. Some will tell you that it was the gear that they strarted on; yes but kites have evolved a lot in the last couple of years. I wouldn't want to risk my security on some old kites that have 4 or 5 knots of usable range. Get some recent gear, there are plenty of good deals in the second hand.
And yes; for sure you will get addicted, and you will make your wife a Kite-Widow.. she will leave with the house and the kids... nah just kidding !
edt, I'd def like to get in touch with some local guys once I get going with this. Jumarcil, I can understand that. It's the same way with paragliders, every year they get so much better. I'll def do my research and ask around here before buying and if I have to get some new gear so be it. Fortunately, I'm 23 and unmarried (no where in the near future either) so I do not have to worry about that!
Okay I have a quick question on kites. I'll give more info later but in case you don't want to read. After taking the lessons I went kite boarding with a friend of a friend down near Orlando. He has a 13m waroo stealth edition 2009 with a new bladder in it and a 9m bularoo 2010. He is looking to sell all his gear and buy new stuff so and he told me he would sell both kites with a bar and lines for $800. To me this seems like a good deal and I kind of have a 5 days to make up my mind before he puts them on clist. The most important thing to me is that we kited and road both kites, I inspected them (they look to be in great condition, the 9 has very little use), and I trust the seller. These will be an ideal size for my area (I'm 170lbs). To me it seems like a no brainer but do you guys have any concerns?
Remember I live in northwest ohio so the market is not nearly as inflated as down in florida.
The long of it. . . I took the lessons down on the slick in cocoa beach, which I would have to think is one of the best places to learn. after going over the safety information and all of the kiting skills and maneuvers for about an hour the instructor said he thought I was ready to ride. I got up first try and road quite a while. I really enjoyed it and I am iching to ride more! My only problem was, I ride goofy on the wakeboard so going right was easy for me but going left took a little getting used to. Then the next day I was powered paragliding with a guy I met down there and his buddy came over after we landed and mentioned that he was about to go kiteboarding. I told him where I was at in the sport and he offered to let me use some of his gear to ride and give me some pointers. He was super helpful and spent a lot of time helping me out on the water. That is where the first paragraph begins.