New to kite-surfing

This forum is for new kiters/beginners to share info and experiences and to get answers to kiting questions. All questions are valid.

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This forum is for new kiters/beginners to share info and experiences and to get answers to kiting questions. All questions are valid. Please provide proper answers (no sarcasm/joke replies, etc.) as we'd like to avoid any confusion or misinformation.

New to kite-surfing

Postby jansch » Tue Aug 13, 2013 11:33 am

Hey guys,

I recently completed my initial kite surfing course with Helm Sports in Foster City/San Mateo and will buy my equipment in the next couple of days.

As of now, I think I'll be mainly at 3rd Ave as I did my lessons there and know the area at least a bit.

I was hoping to get some opinion on how good is 3rd Ave for beginners? I would say I have decent kite flying skills, not as good as the others at 3rd Ave, but not too bad. So far, I haven't been able to stand to often on my board and will most likely need to train this and I am not sure if 3rd Ave is the best location or if Alameda would a better choice.

Also, during my lessons we used a 9m2 kite and I was wondering size of kite you guys would recommend? I am about 5"8 and 188lbs. I was thinking about a 11m2.

Any help would be much appreciated!

Thank you :::)
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Re: New to kite-surfing

Postby kitecrazy » Tue Aug 13, 2013 11:41 am

Since Helm Sports is very familiar with your training and level of skill...these questions would be good to ask them as well as this forum.
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Re: New to kite-surfing

Postby etxxz » Tue Aug 13, 2013 1:54 pm

Unfortunately if you can't ride you board for long, you can't stay upwind. That means the current and wind will carry you wherever you are.

I suggest more practice / instruction. Most places to kite are not very forgiving in that sense. I learned in the (FL) coast for example, where the wind and current brought me back to the beach. It took me a good year to be able to kite upwind in both directions by myself becuase i wanted to save a few hundred dollars in instruction. Looking back i'd trade that whole year and a wrecked kite to be able to ride in a day or two.

Sounds like you just need water time... at 3rd that means water support. Take you upwind, drop you off and follow you. When you can stand on your board comfortably everything will click and that'll be all you need.

Gear wise i'd say 10m. That'll hold you for 95% of the kite able days here in the bay. Its all i fly basically at 170lb. Few times have i needed my 7 and 12m. But get some while there's still wind. Season End is on the horizon, then its surf season ! S*urf
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Re: New to kite-surfing

Postby jansch » Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:47 pm

Thanks etxxz.

I've got some water time already but still do not feel to comfortable standing on the board.

I'll get my stuff and probably some more lessons to make sure that I can get up on the board at least for a longer period.
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Re: New to kite-surfing

Postby jwest21 » Tue Aug 13, 2013 5:00 pm

One of the trickiest aspects to getting to third and it's great consistent winds, is that the skills you need for this location aren't always the skills beginners prioritize. Getting up on your board is far less of a prerequisite for kiting this site than being able to safely launch, land and self rescue. You'll also really want to be able to get upwind by body dragging, or you may end up replacing your board after each session.

If you've got the money for some lessons, go for it, there's no better way to learn quickly and correctly without starting bad habits that can hinder your progress later or lead to dangerous situations. Practice launching and landing over and over (and over) so you know exactly how the kite is supposed to look and behave before you're ready to give the thumbs up. Third usually has pretty consistent winds near shore but occasionally throws a curve ball lull or gust your way. Self rescue is easy to practice because you don't need any wind to try it.
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Re: New to kite-surfing

Postby jansch » Sun Aug 25, 2013 7:45 am

Jwest, I agree the launch and landing is definitely not always easy at 3rd Ave but I think its a great spot due to its wind etc.

I had another couple of lessons and will be starting to practice by my own soon-ish.
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