Be independent, learn how to ride up wind, transitions or jumps !
Riding upwind is the goal to reach when you are kitesurfing so if you are not at this point yet we can teach you how to get there in our perfect flat spot, no wave to disturb your ride and we are the only school on the spot so there is a lot of free space. Because your instructor will be far away after a long ride, we teach with radio when you train in this exercise then you always have great feedback right away after your ride with our advanced package by Accrokite Koh Phangan.
You’re riding upwind quickly but you’re not confident with your transitions? Then we can teach you how to turn, simple or toe-side transitions.
If you are confident with the previous steps then it’s time to learn how to jump! From simple jumps to advance jumps, our team of pro riders can teach you how to get there and feel this sensation of flying in the air! Get ready for some adrenaline in your veins!
So you were out for a nice walk one Sunday afternoon, strolling along the beach, and you see some multi-coloured blimps racing through the sky. Then you see one rocket up into the clouds – is that a person attached to the end of it?!!! You get closer and see they are giant kites with crazy people with snowboards strapped to their feet. What is this sport? And how do you fly like that?
Then you take lessons and feel like a bit of an idiot as you get dragged around, eventually wobbling along on your board and you’re thinking “they made it looks so easy, I just want to do that jumping business!”.
We will try and give you a clearer idea of the easiest, fastest route to getting the skills needed to take you from the end of your kiteboarding lessons to launching into your first jumps.
As you have no doubt been told, improving your kite-handling skills will have the biggest impact on your overall kiteboarding progression. Jumping is no different and having an awareness of your kite from the launch, whilst in mid-air and then when landing, will be crucial. But jumping, and particularly jumping cleanly with good height, will require excellent board skills (maintaining an edge as you load up power through the kite, and hold it until just the right moment).
To ultimately get airborne, this series of progressions is essential training to get you confident and in tune with your kite and board. They are steps to take so you can launch into a jump, have a fair chance of getting more than a few inches out of the water, and actually land without crashing.
It goes without saying that you need to be able to water start reliably if you’re gonna start jumping! After finishing your kiteboarding lessons, you may still be working on this. A good tip to speed up this progression is to find a kite buddy, someone else who is also learning to water start, and then share a board and kite. Take turns doing several water starts and short runs – you may think you’ll get less time to practice but the added confidence of having someone to help in the shallows and catch your kite if it all goes wrong is a big win. You’ll also find you can learn a lot from having to watch your buddy with their attempts.
Jumping means you’re gonna start flying downwind, so you better master cruising back upwind or you’re still gonna be spending a lot of time walking!
Jumping also requires you to control a far greater amount of power, transferring it from the kite to the board, and a bad riding stance is one of the most common culprits for lack lustre jumps, where a poor take-off is made inevitable.
Even once your stance and kite flying start coming together, you may still find you’re not getting upwind. Are you wasting precious time drifting downwind when you change direction? If you’re not staying dry during your sliding turns then get some practice in. A smooth turn with power in your kite throughout will ensure you lose little or no ground downwind.
So you can ride upwind comfortably, and the kite and board feel nicely in control – surely we can start jumping? Well you can, and feel free to jump ahead, but if you want to give yourself the best opportunity to do it well with some height, style and control then it’s highly recommended to give the next two techniques a go…
Many kiting newbies can’t understand the point of riding toeside, it looks awkward and at first, seems to offer no use, but you couldn’t be more wrong.
You’ll find yourself in the toeside position repeated throughout your time as a kiteboarder and with jumping, a lot can happen and be able to land toeside is very handy. But more than this it will force you to ride in a stance that is very different to your normal heelside edging, and the board control you learn is invaluable.
Also, putting all that aside, riding toeside is a lot of fun, in many ways it’s the first “trick” you can learn after getting the basics of kiteboarding under your belt. And it doesn’t require anything too radical, so you can push yourself without worrying about any big crashes in our advanced package with Accrokite Koh Phangan!
Carving turns are a perfect way to build a better understanding of the control between power and lift in your kite and how it relates to maintaining board speed when you not riding along in a straight line. These skills will again help massively with jumping but here you aren’t leaving the water so you remove that element of uncertainty. As you get more comfortable with the timing between the board and the kite, try faster, more aggressive movements of the kite.
Learning to jump will open up the gateway to so many new tricks and experiences but as you can imagine, once you leave the water you are opening yourself up to some new and interesting ways in which you can crash!
So don’t rush in and start throwing your kite around, hoping to boost a massive jump on your first attempts, it’s very easy to get some bad habits early on which will hold you back later. Get the basics, with smaller more controlled kite movements, understand the feeling of being free from the water and build from there. Though, this is not to say to be timid – jumping always requires bold and committed movements of your kite and board but it is bold, and it is overzealous 😉
Your first jump will feel like you are soaring through the sky, looking down on trees as you count the seconds you are airborne. In reality, you probably got no more than a foot out of the water, and were airborne for less than a second and let’s not get started on your style or grace! But we all started there and a small jump with a clean landing is just what you need to work your way up to one of the greatest aspects of kiteboarding. Something that no matter how good you get, you just can’t beat – a big booster!
Accrokite kite school Koh Phangan has a great selection of packages and lessons for beginners to pro Riders! Our growing kite community on Koh Phangan has lots of professional IKO instructors from around the world with a wealth of experience and have years of on the ground teaching everyone from young to old at Accrokite Kite School, Koh Phangan- Read More