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Showing posts with label Kite surfing/boarding. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kite surfing/boarding. Show all posts

Kiteboarding Lessons With Urban Surf, Seattle, WA


I've been dying to try kitebaording for the past two years. But unlike snowboarding or even windsurfing it's ridiculously expensive. Just lessons alone will cost you hundreds of dollars.

I managed to save up to $165 on my Ground Course ( or Level 1, according to International Kiteboarding Organization ) by buying a used trainer kite for $50 from Craigslist, and learning how to use it by watching Youtube.

But learning to kite on your own can be a frustrating and dangerous experience. Taking a kiteboarding lesson with a qualified instructor ensures that not only you, but also those around you will be safe!

After logging in hours of practice with my trainer kite, I was ready and excited about Level 2 ( Kiting Course ) that I planned to take with Urban Surf at Jetty Island in Everett.

$320 for a 4 hours class...After spending $600 on my gear, I was broke. Lucky for me, a friend of mine agreed to give kiteboarding a try, thus reducing the price to $210

As usual, I had higher expectations that I should have had...

The description on the site promises that you'll learn a lot...but... the catch is that those 4 hours you have to split with your buddy, giving you less time to learn and practice.

Not only did we not cover everything we were suppose to, after the class I didn't feel safe or confident to continue practicing on my own. I personally don't think that experience was worth the money I spent.

The final step to become an independent rider is Level 3 ( learning how to get up and ride ) and that's another $220. I think I will have to do it the old fashion way...watching Youtube...

UPDATE : In 2018, Urban Surf hiked up their prices, and lowered the quality of their services ( from what I heard ).

If you're looking for kiteboarding/kitesurfing lessons near Seattle, check out website www.seattlekitesurfpaddle.com for recommendations of our tried, and approved independent kiteboarding instructors in Seattle and beyond.

Our goal is to help people learn kiteboarding in a safe, fun, and easy way ! And while kiteboarding is NOT cheap ( gear, lessons, travel ), we do our best to save you time, and money !

The boys from Wijk

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Wijk aan Zee is a small town on the coast of the North Sea in the municipality of Beverwijk in the province of North Holland of the Netherlands. It is an extremely popular kite and wind surfing spot.

The video below makes me wish I was that young to start kiteboarding:


How To Fly A Trainer Kite

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To learn the basics of flying kites for kite boarding you don't have to be on or near the water. When starting, 80% of the skills required to kiteboard are in controlling the kite. You need to learn to control your power source (the kite) before you can learn to ride the board successfully
The first step is to become proficient in flying a trainer kite.

I bought my first trainer kite from Craigslist for $50 before I even knew what a trainer kite was. Lucky fro me, I happened to buy one of the best trainer kites out there - Slingshot B3.

Trainer kites come in three types: 2/3/4 lines. Typically the smaller kites come with just 2 lines and the more powerful kites (over 3m) come with 3 or 4 lines. In terms of flying, a 2-line kite flies just as well as a 3 or 4-line. The benefit of a 2-line kite is that the lines never really get tangled, where the benefit of a 3 or 4-line kite is the ability to relaunch the kite after it crashes. To relaunch a 2-line kite you'll need to walk back to the kite and put it in the correct position ( very important ! ).

My Slingshot B3 was a breeze to learn to fly and control. I am happy I didn't waste $100 for a land/ground course. It took me literally less than an hour "to master" flying this kite.

Kite skiing/Snowkiting : Ride Up

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Kites, wings, chutes, sails...I'm hopelessly in love with all these little toys that add an extra short of adrenaline to your outdoor adventures.

Take backcountry skiing for example. It's always fun to ski down the mountain in untouched, knee deep powder snow. But the way up is dreadful and exhausting.

Just add a kite, and it's a completely different experience:

Ride Up "Dark side of the home spot" from RideUp on Vimeo.

Never too old for adventures


In my post " Too old for adventure ? " I wrote about Doris Matyasovich, a competitive MTB ( mountain biking ) racer, who started racing at age 45, and continued way into her late 60 ( she was 67 at the time of the article)...

This post on Biking Bis shows amazing stats !:
According to The Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa online survey ( summer 2010), 7% of the RAGBRAI cyclists were 65 or older. The average age of the Adventure Cycling Association's members is the mid-40s, with a spread of ages from the 20s to the 70s and occasionally the 80s. Although the Outdoor Industry Foundation reports that 27% of the bike riders in the US are 45 or older...
OK, we get it, old folks love biking. But what about something more extreme ?

Meet Poul Rasmussen from Denmark. His passion - kiteboarding. And his only ...85 ! He learned to kiteboard early in his 80's and absolutely loved it. He is so passionate about this sport that he can be found kiteboarding in below-freezing weather, and actively encourages other seniors to try it. He states in his interview that "50 - 60 years of age is nothing! Go live your life and I bet that you'll live longer and have more fun."

There aren’t too many 80+ surfer dudes in the world. But since 1940, John Zabotocky has been riding Hawaiian waves in Waikiki, and at 89, he was still a regular beachboy surfer.

It's not unusual to see people skiing or snowboarding in their late 50's , but skateboarding ?
Donna Vano, 56, holds three Guinness World Records as the Oldest Inline Vert Skater in the World, the Most Gold Medals in the USASA in all 5 disciplines, and the Oldest Female Amateur Snowboarder Competing in Pro Tours in the Superpipe. When Donna is not competing, you can find her at home, skating on the 11-foot ramp in her backyard.

Is climbing Everest on your Bucket List ? Don't be discouraged by the danger of climbing this mountain ( and the price you'll have to pay to climb it). The oldest person to have climbed Mount Everest is a Nepalese Sherpa called Min Bahadur Sherchan. He was 76 years and 340 days old when he reached the summit.

Still trying to find courage to take that leap of faith and try skydiving ? Frank Moody was 101 when he did it !

Young adults dominate the thrill seekers, but older people are jumping in as well. Skydiving, hang gliding, rock climbing, mountaineering, bungee jumping, white-water rafting, scuba diving and other extreme sports have all shown huge increases in participation.

Just because your body is starting to make funny noises and your kids have their own kids, it does not mean you are getting old. You still have plenty to do before the nursing home comes to claim you. Just don’t let that term life insurance agent know !

Are there any "extreme adventures" you think you are too old for ? Other than age ( and fear) is there anything else that stops you from trying something adventurous ?

Kite surfing - try it at home (not).

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Kite surfing is going to be my next summer adventure. I've been planning to try kite surfing ( or is it kite boarding ?) for quite some time.

The main reason that stopped me from doing it in the past was the money. Just like many outdoor sports, kite surfing isn't cheap. Just to give it a try and take a lesson, would cost you about $300. And if you decide to stick to this sport, be ready to part with a hefty amount of money - up to $1000 ( for brand new set up ). And from my experience, in sports like kite surfing, diving, paragliding you don't really want "to save a few bucks" and go with something used.

Another reason I was putting it off was, well, it's not exactly the "safest" outdoor activity ( yes, I am a wuss, that's why I stick to hiking), where you can just gear up and you're ready to go.

But after watching this video, I've realized that "not safe" is the best part of kite surfing. Actually, it's the best part of any extreme sport: