Kitesurfing Beginner Technique

Kitesurfing Technique - Air Gybe
Kitesurfing Technique - Air Gybe
Air Gybe

The Air Gybe done well is the King of smooth: just freezing mid flight, maybe throwing in a cheeky grab, whilst hanging in the wind then casually changing direction before powering off back out to sea. Once fully mastered even the biggest air can be a mere method of turning, and any obstacle a plant. If you have conquered the…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Back Loop
Kitesurfing Technique - Back Loop
Back Loop

The backloop has often been the defining moment in many a riders kitesurfing history. The first genuine “trick” to really wow the masses and motivate ones belief to keep learning, keep tacking time off work and keep spending money. However it does not have to be the starting point. If you can already jump and have the front loop sorted,…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Back Loop Transition
Kitesurfing Technique - Back Loop Transition
Back Loop Transition

There comes a time in every kiters life when suddenly all the hours of battling the elements really starts to pay dividends. Once you have mastered the many basic fundamentals you will have a solid foundation on which to build many blocks. The backloop transition is without a shadow of doubt the first funky add on to the beloved foundation…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Beach Start
Kitesurfing Technique - Beach Start
Beach Start

Being able to jump on your board and ride off into the sunset without dipping your derriere into the chilly April drink is a veritable pleasure. In it’s simplest form, and attempted in the right conditions, the beach start in Video 1 is well within every up winders grasp. As with so many elements of kiting, most of the skills…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Body Dragging Upwind
Kitesurfing Technique - Body Dragging Upwind
Body Dragging Upwind

Being able to get back to your board or back to the beach is just as important as being able to ride. Without the confidence which this skill gives you, you’ll be sentenced to a life wearing a board leash, doomed to never pushing yourself to learn anything new or fancy, and a hobby involving much more swimming and faffing…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Deep Water Board Carry
Kitesurfing Technique - Deep Water Board Carry
Deep Water Board Carry

We thought we’d include how to carry a board for a couple of reasons: firstly no end of kiters comment to us about how hard it is to carry a board now that so many people don’t use handles. Secondly it’s a bloody good way of keeping karma on your side, a bit like not eating Shark Empanadas, and we…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Front Loop
Kitesurfing Technique - Front Loop
Front Loop

Guaranteed to spice up ones armoury, the front loop is the base move for so many kiting tricks, that it be often regarded with awe and fear. Perhaps because it looks so smooth, and some how un-dangly, it seems to scare prospective freshers away, who then seem intent on focusing all their efforts on the back loop. Well fear ye…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Heel to Toe Carve
Kitesurfing Technique - Heel to Toe Carve
Heel to Toe Carve

Carving from your heels to you toes with grace whilst throwing up a wall of spray feels divine and looks pretty darn good too. Most of us stumbled from our toes back around to our heels, but somehow this turn causes a few more problems with timing and keeping the power. Once mastered it opens the door to gauging turns…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Heel to Toe Carve with Spray
Kitesurfing Technique - Heel to Toe Carve with Spray
Heel to Toe Carve with Spray

Everyone loves a decent toe to heel carve, pushing against the back foot, throwing up a wall of spray like Andy Mapple on the slalom course. Funnily enough, we don’t often witness people wanting to light it up heel to toe. Odd when you compare it to other sports where toe edge carving is the dream, a searing frontside bottom…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Heelside Hand Drag
Kitesurfing Technique - Heelside Hand Drag
Heelside Hand Drag

We thought we'd start this edition with a bit of simplistic, or so it would seem style. Elegantly stroking the water, followed by a plume of spray, was one of the original kiting money shots, and one that is still oft revered and pulled out the bag by many a guest on our clinics. However, as has been the experience…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Jumping
Kitesurfing Technique - Jumping
Jumping

Jumping Most of us would find it hard to deny the fact that it was jumping that originally flew the flag of appeal and suckered us into this amazing sport. No matter how much we improve, no matter how many crazy powered this or that’s we can pull, there is still nothing quite like airtime. From that first moment of…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Kit Set Up
Kitesurfing Technique - Kit Set Up
Kit Set Up

A few pages later in this issue we will be covering the all-important wonder of stance. It’s all good and well discussing which hernia inducing, twister-mimicking positions you should be moulding yourselves into. But it could all prove so unachievable or at the very best extremely difficult, if you are wrestling with a kite and board determined to resist your…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Pop Back From Toeside
Kitesurfing Technique - Pop Back From Toeside
Pop Back From Toeside

Last issue we looked at the rather swanky way of popping to toeside. So it’s probably only fair to give you the equally impressive method of styling back from toeside to heelside. It’s all good and well hammering into a carve, or timidly sliding the board back from toeside, but if you’re intending to carry on in the same direction…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Pop to Toeside
Kitesurfing Technique - Pop to Toeside
Pop to Toeside

Some time ago back in the annals of history, or issue 2 to be precise, we looked at how to slide the board from heelside to toeside. Probably one of the first tasty moves any of us learnt. Now it’s time to take the Lucky Luke step even further and actually pop to toeside, which could also be your first…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Popped Backloop
Kitesurfing Technique - Popped Backloop
Popped Backloop

Some time ago in issue 6 we introduced you to the back loop. Those of you who followed it will remember that we advised you to learn the jumped version. Hopefully now you have that in the bag, the actual rotation should come fairly naturally. So let’s move on to the popped variation, which simplistically should just entail a bit…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Popping
Kitesurfing Technique - Popping
Popping

The ability to get some pop is unquestionably one of the most useful, polyvalent skills known to a kitesurfer. We discussed it to a degree in the air gybe, but it leads to many other glorious moves and is the secret to any tomfoolery when the kite is not sent to get us off the water as for a jump.…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Popping off a Wave / Chop
Kitesurfing Technique - Popping off a Wave / Chop
Popping off a Wave / Chop

Popping off a wave, wavelet or steep bit of chop as in Video 1, in many locations, is an inevitable and often unavoidable consequence of meeting one of the oceans naturally formed stunt ramps, as you speed out from the beach. When you know what you’re doing these obstacles become joyous kickers, but when you don’t know how to handle…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Slide Turn
Kitesurfing Technique - Slide Turn
Slide Turn

There are many life-changing moments in kiting, from the first planing runs, through coming in with a dry kite, to the virginal moment of silent airtime. Once we’re up and running, being able to change direction without dipping our bums into the ocean means that we’ve reached a milestone. Here is a stylish and practical move for all seasons. Whether…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Stance
Kitesurfing Technique - Stance
Stance

Stance, body position, posture: the way in which we hold ourselves on the board is the ultimate foundation, principle numero uno, THE fundamental of everything that we try and achieve in kitesurfing. From the outset of getting up on the board, rocking upwind, resisting for take-off, popping, getting out through the lumpy stuff and anything else which requires you to…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Beach Start
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Beach Start
Strapless Beach Start

Continuing on from last issue’s strapless fest you’re probably more than ready for this. The beach start is a useful tool as it means that not only can you delay the inevitable dunking, but you can also get off the beach quickly, which is a godsend when the waves are pumping. Water starting is all good and well but if…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Heel to Toe Carve
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Heel to Toe Carve
Strapless Heel to Toe Carve

Carving a surfboard successfully, throwing up a wall of water and exiting with speed feels absolutely divine. It is the basic building block for all things wave riding. And once you are confident changing from edge to edge, or rather rail to rail and throwing the kite about, you’ll soon be ready to challenge waves that once seemed intimidating. All…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Riding
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Riding
Strapless Riding

We’re going to keep this one relatively brief, as it is not rocket science, or rather it doesn’t have to be, apologies Mr Bernoulli. However pretty much everyone who stands on a surfboard for the first time, having been riding twin tips makes the same basic mistakes. To understand how a board works and how this effects the way you…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Toe to Heel Carve
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Toe to Heel Carve
Strapless Toe to Heel Carve

Continuing on from last issue’s heel to toe carve, we can now add the other half to complete the basic requirements of wave riding. Once you can link these two turns together you are wave riding, however mythically it may appear to onlookers, and all you need to add is a genuine curl of water chasing you and before you…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Water Start
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Water Start
Strapless Water Start

Last month during a series of clinics in Egypt, many of our guests often commented on how impressive it looked to be riding around on a surfboard without straps, and of course how much fun it looked even on flat water. On top of this the general consensus was that it must be very difficult. Au contraire mes amis! In…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Surfboard Foot Change
Kitesurfing Technique - Surfboard Foot Change
Surfboard Foot Change

Whether you are riding strapless or strapped, the necessity to change your feet will eventually come knocking. Back in the dark ages when three strap directionals were in mode, it was not unusual to see kiters dropping into the water, turning their planks around and then sailing back whence they came. However those with a slight thirst for progress took…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Switch to Toeside
Kitesurfing Technique - Switch to Toeside
Switch to Toeside

Whether you are already attempting to ride toe side or are now contemplating the possibility, hopefully there should be a few helpful hints in the next page or two. As mentioned in the last issue, switching to toe side is a fairly natural step forward from the slide turn. If you are now sliding around like Torvill and Dean you…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Toe to Heel Carve
Kitesurfing Technique - Toe to Heel Carve
Toe to Heel Carve

We recently took you through carving onto your toes, so now we’ll add the second piece of the puzzle and carve you back round onto your heel as in Video 1. To many riders this will feel like a more natural way to turn, as once you’re around you have the safety net and confidence of a reliable heel side…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Toe to Heel Spray Carve
Kitesurfing Technique - Toe to Heel Spray Carve
Toe to Heel Spray Carve

There is something deeply satisfying in kicking up buckets of spray regardless of sports. Whether it be fanning deep powder on a mountain, annihilating the lip of a wave, chucking dirt on a bike or walling a slalom ski around a buoy, the inner kid in all of us can’t resist it and the ensuing look back to check, regardless…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Toeside Surfboard Water Start
Kitesurfing Technique - Toeside Surfboard Water Start
Toeside Surfboard Water Start

You may be interested in riding a surfboard because your mitts can no longer grip the bar for out and out freestyle, or perhaps you just dream of carving beautiful faces on your new Christmas present. Either way riding a surfboard, whether a kite specific strap design or and old short board is well within everybody’s reach. If you’ve spent…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Twin Tip Heel to Toe Carve with Downloop
Kitesurfing Technique - Twin Tip Heel to Toe Carve with Downloop
Twin Tip Heel to Toe Carve with Downloop

There is nothing sweeter than exiting a carve with some oomph, whether it be full back burners boosting to the max or a more mellow constant pull to drive against. There are so many factors that inhibit the perfect turn, but there is one addition that can pretty much guarantee an excellent score – adding a downloop. If the mere…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Under Turns
Kitesurfing Technique - Under Turns
Under Turns

Once you have giggled yourself senseless riding across the grand bleu, you know that the once unsure world of kitesurfing is in fact your true calling. With that knowledge comes the endless quest for hacking upwind, mastering your “bad side” and a bevy of pointless, yet none the less handsome moves. In your pursuit of these dreams you may often…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Unhooking
Kitesurfing Technique - Unhooking
Unhooking

Having watched with great amusement the bursting veins of many friends as they wrestled to hold their “classics” and “surfboards” down, we patiently waited, deep within our subconscious, for the advent of the 4-line kite, and the luxury of a chicken loop. As kit developed, the odd maverick such as Lou Waiman showed the up and coming talents what would…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Walking With a Kite
Kitesurfing Technique - Walking With a Kite
Walking With a Kite

This one is for anyone who has just had their first lessons, or had their lessons last year and may need a reminder on the best and safest method for walking around whilst attached to a flying kite. So whether you’re heading down to the coast or tripping off abroad being confident and safe on terra firma should see happily…

Beginner

Featured

Kitesurfing Technique - Air Gybe with Late Kite Loop
Kitesurfing Technique - Air Gybe with Late Kite Loop
Air Gybe with Late Kite Loop

This move is really as much a cheat as it is a trick, and a very useful one at that. If the title doesn’t give away what it is have a look at Video 1. A late kite loop in this case means that the kite loops once you are on the water, not in the air. You’ve probably seen…

Kitesurfing Technique - Double Back Loop Down Loop Transition
Kitesurfing Technique - Double Back Loop Down Loop Transition
Double Back Loop Down Loop Transition

This is a fine transition, and with the down loop pulling you out at the end, you’ll get a lovely surge of power and exit with as much speed as you took into it. Down loop transitions are all about having confidence with the kite, as you need to keep flying it throughout the move, so this will be your…

Kitesurfing Technique - Toeside Back Loop Downloop Transition
Kitesurfing Technique - Toeside Back Loop Downloop Transition
Toeside Back Loop Downloop Transition

If Paul Simon were a kitesurfer, he’d have surely written about the numerous ways to leave the water and perhaps more poignantly about how many transitions there are on offer for us to learn. So here is another for those of you that love adding bows to your quiver, enjoy a decent challenge and have good enough memories to remember…

Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Heel to Toe Carve
Kitesurfing Technique - Strapless Heel to Toe Carve
Strapless Heel to Toe Carve

Carving a surfboard successfully, throwing up a wall of water and exiting with speed feels absolutely divine. It is the basic building block for all things wave riding. And once you are confident changing from edge to edge, or rather rail to rail and throwing the kite about, you’ll soon be ready to challenge waves that once seemed intimidating. All…

Beginner
Kitesurfing Technique - Back Loop Kite Loop
Kitesurfing Technique - Back Loop Kite Loop
Back Loop Kite Loop

Ruben Lenten has pretty much made this move his-own, which is just as well because it could do with a bit of a revival. This is very much an advanced move and done well looks phenomenal (see above). Back in the day the back loop kite loop separated the men and women from the boys and girls. Obviously the kids…

Kitesurfing Technique - Switch to Toeside
Kitesurfing Technique - Switch to Toeside
Switch to Toeside

Whether you are already attempting to ride toe side or are now contemplating the possibility, hopefully there should be a few helpful hints in the next page or two. As mentioned in the last issue, switching to toe side is a fairly natural step forward from the slide turn. If you are now sliding around like Torvill and Dean you…

Beginner
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