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Welcome to the club Charlie
Seems to be a common problem this summer (Evan...how is he doing?)
although - my knee is blown out because of that freak accident (not even kite related)
the need to need a knee...yeah...really needed for kiting
you don't need teeth ((Z.....hope your are doing better!) and
as someone mentioned at the beach a few days ago - you don't need a thumb (he had his thumb, just injured)
But you need your knees for kiting
Too much jumping, hard langdings?
You need flex in your board that absorbs shock better than stiff boards. I feel the difference with my boards in the knees
Hope you feel better soon!
oh - and treat the knee with care, listen to it. When it wants a break you better give in....
Yeah, my knees hurt from kiting. I now wrap my knees before I kite - helps a ton! Also, strong abs will take a lot of the pressure from your knees. Even while kiting if your knees start to hurt, engage your abs - it will give some relief. BUT if your in a lot of pain, stop kiting for that day. Go to a doctor, know what your dealing with - so many things can go wrong with knees.
I have bad knees and back from ballet - if I did not do pilates, I would not be able to kite or do any of the things I love to do. I still have limitations (most likely I'll never do any crazy kite tricks), but I still get to enjoy kiting, aerial dancing, trapeze...
i don't know how you injured your knee, but, it always helps to know how to land softly(consult your local 'big air, butter soft landing' pro) but just some general knowledge to all athletes out there: we tend to neglect exercising ALL of our leg muscles and that can cause unsolicited knee pain. cycling is excellent, also, a lot of simple leg exercises, like adducting/abducting, lifting your foot from the knee, will help strengthen all opposing muscles and keeps the knee stable and stronger.
p.s. as far as Zev goes, i think toothlessness becomes him. after all he lives in a trailer park.
Having gone through a few, errrrr, physical challenges this year, let me share my obervations.
Most kiters are hardcore about getting as many hours on the water as possible...(at least this was me before I met the bumper of an Expedition )..... This means:
* They don't take much time to cross train (hike, swim, bike) during kite season
* They don't stretch, ever. No, pumping your kite does not count
Rest of this posting is organized by how much impact the parts have (taking care of your health has more impact then gear.) At the end of the day, I try to do all parts to stack the odds in my favor. But as they used to say in car commercials "Your milage will vary depending on your driving habbits".
The best defense is a good offense. Take care of your your core: stomach muscles, back musles, hamstrings, quads, adductors/abbductors. This means stretch and strengthen. I learned a lot the hard way, in physical thereapy. My PT was a combination of Yoga, Pilates and STRETCHING....it's not exciting, you get no air, no rush, no suntan, no wind blowing in your hair........But it makes you feel really good, and makes your body last longer......
Sprinkle in eating healthy, drinking lots of water and good sleep.
When you ride, engage your core (pretend someone is about to punch you in the gut): in addition to helping your body, it makes you go quite fast as more energy from the kite is delivered to the rail of the board (vs. absorbed by your body).
When riding in choppy water, be light on your feet - use them as shock absorbers, like skiing bumps. Don't slam into chop with your feet/knees locked: I'm amazed how many people I see riding with a locked stance vs. flexing. When going into the chop, try bearing off a bit, make up the upwind progress on the opposite reach.
Land going downwind, tail first (point the nose of your board at the kite). Learn how to keep power in your kite as you land (by looping the mother on the way down) so that your landings are soft, vs. karplash. If you are coming in like a rock, raise your legs and land on your butt vs. your feet.
A flexy board can help. Put on Cush footbeds, like the LF luxury set up, this makes a big difference.
Adjust your stance to find what works: how wide, what angle, same for both feet? or is right a bit more ducked then left.....I'm amazed at how many people DO NOT take the time to find what works for them, they just take the stock set up that comes with the board and ride........this was one of the reasons I went with custom boards, as I wanted a different stance then most boards offered off the shelf (I like it wide).
The last one is a no brainer: don't go out too powered. Ride the right kite so that you don't slam into chop quite as hard.
Find a spot with no chop. Then call me!!!
Get some, Z toothless 1
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