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Old 16th January 2010, 03:28 PM   #27
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 33

when I say one week to learn I mean , with a qualified instructor.rigging ,launching, self rescue ,control of the kite,recognising danger/safety,getting onto the board,riding out,turning the board and getting back to the beach.All in moderate winds up to about 15knts.With a modern depowerable kite.The jumping high comes later with experience.All of the accidents I have seen have been when kites have been used in stupidly high winds like upwards of 25/30knts,or when they have been used by beginers without qualified supervision who see experienced kiters and think That looks good,they go and buy a kite and think thats all they need to do.Yes highly expirenced kiters can and do get into difficulties,and there have been too many fatalities,just as there have in ski and snowboarding,sky diving,potholing etc.I once witnessed a guy at my local beach,first time with a kite,Behind the high sand dunes with 30knts blowing over the top start to launch a 15 metre kite.Before I could get to him to stop and warn him,the kite rose slowly up then was caught by the wind above the dunes.Thirty foot up he then had no idea what to do and in panic redirected the kite which pulled him superman style, still twenty foot up .towards the sea. He hit feet first doing about 30mph,in a few inches of water.Result air amubance rescue and both hip joints dislocated and both sides of his pelvis fractured.It is dangerous but thats why I say it shouldn't be compared to windsurfing,When things go wrong when on a windsurfer generally you don't get hurt,or if you do it's relatively minor. Also if you have never been on a windsurfer then Even without lessons you can buy a suitable board,climb on and have a mess about. Not so with kiting,essential to have qualified instruction,even from the very first time you launch a large traction kite. I have never used a kite in anything above 20 knts,there no point just take a 5meter sail out and enjoy.Its a local joke in my area where there is a good mix of kites and windsurfers that kiting is for those who can't windsurf.One dedicated kiter (Never been on a windsurfer) says he's going to buy a small 85 litre wave board and a couple of small sails when he sees one on e bay,cos he says he will just get on the board and sail out to sea,cos it can't be that hard.We all said please,please,please tell us when so we can all come down and watch you sail out to sea ,gybe(Whats that he said) come back in and ride a few waves. Be the best laugh of the century
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