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  #1  
Old 01-06-2008, 11:32 PM
davewolfs davewolfs is offline
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Default Question about Dangers of KiteSurfing

Hello everyone,

I am new here and am looking into getting into KiteSurfing. On this forum I have noticed numerous posts of accidents where people were hurt by lofting onto land.

I have never handled any equipment so I am not familiar with how KiteSurfing gear works, but I must ask, why didn't these individuals simply release themselves from the kite?

Is doing so a difficult task? Can this quick release easily fail? Feedback is greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Dave
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  #2  
Old 01-07-2008, 07:54 AM
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BigR BigR is offline
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generally the release systems work very well. Unfortunately when faced with a situation where such a system needs to be activated, some people will hesitate or not realize/ know how to activate the devices.

One should always practice without hesitation, the release system that comes with your equipment
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  #3  
Old 01-07-2008, 02:46 PM
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BigR is right..
You have to practice with your quick release so you know how to use it. Being a newer rider (little less than a year)
I made sure to practice with my QR as I had to use it once, and it worked fine...
On the same hand I was riding in conditions Not favorable for my experience or Kite Size....
Knowing your limit and the limit of your gear is the best saftey system....
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Old 01-07-2008, 08:19 PM
davewolfs davewolfs is offline
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Thank you for the feedback. I plan on taking lessons so hopefully they will cover all the other hazards that I am not aware of.

A few other questions.

1. How dangerous is it to solo launch a kite? I don't know anyone who Kite Surfs, so I will be starting solo.
2. If the kite hits the water while out in the ocean, how difficult is it to bring your kite back up? If you can't bring it back up how do you get your kite back to shore?

Thanks again,

Dave
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  #5  
Old 01-07-2008, 10:01 PM
Galego Galego is offline
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i think the question should be "what are the dangers associated with solo kite launching?" because even launching with the aid of someone else can be dangerous if they don't put safety first. iv had other people who were trying to help but put me at risk because of their actions. at least when i solo launch there is only one person who can screw it up, not two. so where are you located and have you got an instructor/lessons lined up?
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Old 01-08-2008, 11:30 AM
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RickI RickI is offline
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Hey Dave,

Best advice is to line up the best, quality Pro kiteboarding instruction you can manage. Kiting is like flying a plane, aspects of it are very easy, like steering. Others, like dealing with emergencies or better anticipating and avoiding them anything but.

People often fail to practice mentally and physically what they would do in various emergencies, also they may rarely, if ever, practice emergency releases. They may freeze and never touch their QR, they may try to activate it but not find it, it may not work as intended, be compromised by poor PM, etc.. In reality, often in severe loftings, no effort activate the QR is seen.

Continue to read over information on this site as you may not encounter some important aspects in kiting instruction. That doesn't reduce the importance of understanding this stuff however.
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  #7  
Old 01-08-2008, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davewolfs View Post
Thank you for the feedback. I plan on taking lessons so hopefully they will cover all the other hazards that I am not aware of.

A few other questions.

1. How dangerous is it to solo launch a kite? I don't know anyone who Kite Surfs, so I will be starting solo.
2. If the kite hits the water while out in the ocean, how difficult is it to bring your kite back up? If you can't bring it back up how do you get your kite back to shore?

Thanks again,

Dave
Dave,

We have had over 70 folks take themselves out kiting over the years, quite a few more have seriously injured themselves. A number have been new kiters trying to figure out how to do it on their own. Not a good idea, don't do it. If you need to travel to take quality instruction, save up for it and do it. Would you teach yourself how to hang glide? Lots used to try back in the '70's. There are quite a few parallels in the two activities.

A short list of things you should be aware of in kiting follow. More than you would want to try to figure out and thoroughly understand on your own.

Knowledge Development

1. How kites, boards and gear work.
2. Insight into the wind, wind window and influences on kite performance and power.
3. What to look for in good launch, riding and landing areas vs. poor areas.
4. What is a safety buffer (DISTANCE), and the critical importance of
maintaining one.
5. Wind, weather & water environment planning and monitoring. What causes unstable weather/wind and associated hazards, how to predict it and what to watch out for. What are suitable conditions and variables for riding, what
conditions should you avoid and what to look for.
6. Minimum kiteboarder physical capabilities such as swimming, fitness, warm up and warm down procedures.
7. Kiting rules of the road, kiting responsibility & protecting access to kite.
8. Gear selection (kite, line, board, wetsuit/drysuit, etc.), for predicted
conditions and kiteboarding safety gear (helmets, impact vests, gloves, knives, signalling devices, etc.).
9. Standard voice and hand signals e.g. launch, landing, rescue, etc..
10. Kiteboarding hazards (lofting, dragging, etc., emergency scenarios, avoidance and management.
11. What skills to work on following the initial training, tips for achieving them and precautions.

Some of this information may be conveyed while working with the instructor on the beach or in the water, during lectures or in hand outs. If your instructor doesn’t cover all this information you would do well to research these topics on your own. Quite a lot of information appears at:
http://fksa.org/ and http://www.kitesurfingschool.org/

Skill Development

1. Gear setup & putting it away, preflighting, basic preventative maintenance.
2. Launching and landing unhooked and launch angle selection for conditions.
3. Capable stable kite flight under a variety of conditions both unhooked and hooked in.
4. Ability to vary and maintain constant kite power through kite positioning and sinusoiding.
5. Kite safety (emergency depower), activation in repeated simulated emergencies and rearming including an overview of current safety systems.
6. Harness and trim strap use.
7. Solo and assisted kite launching and landing.
8. Body dragging upwind with and without a board from point to point.
9. Self rescue techniques including using the kite as a sail to return to shore and securing the kite and lines and swimming into shore.
10. Ability to relaunch kite from water.
11. Beach starting and rudiments of water starting on a board.
12. Tips on how to ride upwind.

There is still more beyond this. Kiting isn't as easy as it looks.
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  #8  
Old 01-09-2008, 12:10 AM
davewolfs davewolfs is offline
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Thank you all for the replies.

I can assure you that I have never thought kiting was easy. I just want to make sure I know what I am getting myself into before I start.

I live in the Jupiter area so I was planning on contacting
http://www.jupiterkiteboarding.com/ for my lessons. It appears they are certified, any comments on this outfitter?
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  #9  
Old 01-09-2008, 12:11 AM
davewolfs davewolfs is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davewolfs View Post
Thank you for the feedback. I plan on taking lessons so hopefully they will cover all the other hazards that I am not aware of.

A few other questions.

1. How dangerous is it to solo launch a kite? I don't know anyone who Kite Surfs, so I will be starting solo.
2. If the kite hits the water while out in the ocean, how difficult is it to bring your kite back up? If you can't bring it back up how do you get your kite back to shore?

Thanks again,

Dave
Any comments on #2? I was curious to get the high level overview of how one re-launches their kite while in the water.
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  #10  
Old 01-09-2008, 07:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davewolfs View Post
Thank you all for the replies.

I can assure you that I have never thought kiting was easy. I just want to make sure I know what I am getting myself into before I start.

I live in the Jupiter area so I was planning on contacting
http://www.jupiterkiteboarding.com/ for my lessons. It appears they are certified, any comments on this outfitter?
Jeremy Green has been in kiting for some years puts on the annual Jupiter Kite Invasion and is well known in the industry.
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