Part 4: Tips on Choosing the Best Gear Suitable For You: Harness and Kiteboard
Continued from previous post.
How to choose my kiteboarding harness?
There are two different families of a kitesurfing harness: the seat harness and the waist harness. Which one is the best for you? It depends on various factors, but basically it depends on you. The harness you are most comfortable with is your best choice.
Seat harness has the advantage to stay in position, especially when you are a beginner. In fact, when you start kitesurfing, you won’t have a perfectly correct kiteboarding position, and this harness will help a lot with that. It won’t get dragged by the kite up to your chest, hurting your ribs.
Waist harness gives you much more freedom in your movements and it’s normally a bit lighter: it’s more appropriate for expert riders, who can kiteboard in a correct body position, and know how to keep the harness from sliding up their chest. Of course, waist harnesses also look better if your goal is to show off your kiteboarding skills.
However, keep in mind that a lot of my experienced kitesurfer friends still use a seat harness, because they find it more comfortable. Some other kitesurfers I know, even if less experienced, prefer the waist harness, because they think it’s cooler. So there are no strict rules in choosing it, also considering the average cost of a new harness: $100-200 USD on average. After kitesurfing for at least three or four years, you will know much better what your preference is.
How to choose my kiteboard?
As a beginner, you’ll mostly like to start with a twin tip, which is the easiest board to use, since it’s symmetrical and you can change your direction without having to turn the kiteboard and to switch your feet in the straps. If your interest in kiteboarding is to freestyle or wakestyle (jumps in different ways: big air or unhooked), then you should go for a good twin tip that will take you from beginner to intermediate, even up to advanced level. Just don’t go to extremes, and don’t buy kiteboards that are too small or too big: ask your instructor for the best size for you. If you are interested in surf or racing, you might just borrow a kiteboard from a friend, or buy a used cheap twin tip for the time you’re learning the basics. Buy a new one as soon as you get skilled enough. Those boards are normally chosen depending on the height and weight of the rider, and are a subject to the kind of waves you are planning to ride.
Of course, these are just basic guidelines, and in my future posts I’ll get into more details about your kitesurfing gear: kites, harnesses and kiteboards.
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Post On How to Choose the Best Kitesurfing Equipment (Part Four)
Blog about kitesurf culture. In this post you can fin how to properly choose your kiteboard and harness
Written by: Gabriele Fabrizio Sbalbi
Kitesurf Kiteboarding Equipment Gear
Date published: 03/31/2014