It can be quite daunting buying equipment for any new sport you might getting into, especially something kiteboarding where there are so many options for the kite alone. The overwhelming options can even be enough to put you off but do not dismay dear readers, let’s take a look at what your best options are when starting out and hopefully we can help to make the whole experience a much simpler affair. Before we start it’s always worth checking out what use of second-hand equipment is available, naturally you’ll want to be careful when choosing these but many items will have barely been used, especially beginners’ items, so take your time and maybe you’ll find an absolute quality bargain out there. In order to get started let’s break down the gear by its main components as opposed to looking at it as one complete set.
You can’t kiteboard without a kite naturally, you’re going to need a kite. There are plenty of different types of kite to choose from and technically you could use any kind of kite at all if you really wanted. That being said you really want one that is big and easy to control, especially to begin with. It’s recommended that beginners start out with a delta-shaped kite, these have an excellent wind range, are easy to manoeuvre and easy to relaunch which is pivotal when starting out, allowing you to get up and set off time and time again without any real issue. Choosing a kite like this will allow you to progress quickly, then you can look at more technical options.
When choosing a board, you really want to pay attention to the size of the thing, your own size and weight should influence the size of the board that you decide on. It’s also important to take into account that larger boards will provide an easier and more stable ride, this will be especially helpful when starting out. You’ll also want to make sure that you start out with a beginner or freeride board, again designed for a more comfortable ride that will help you get to grips with the sport much quicker than say a freestyle board would.
Control and Lines
When purchasing you control and lines for the kite it’s perhaps best to get them from the same place and by the same brand as your kite, this will avoid and issues with incompatibilities between the parts. If they are the same brand almost all controls will be compatible the kite meaning there should be no issue setting up. If you are purchasing these second hand make sure you always check the safety release is in working order and that there are no cuts or tares in the lines.
Here you have an option between a chest harness or a sit harness, (likely what you will have used during your training) to begin with you’re better to use a sit harness. This harness will provide better balance keeping the gravity centre down and causing less strain when going upwind. This piece of equipment will likely outlast most others so make sure you get one that is comfortable for you.