5 Tips To Improve Your Upwind Riding

5 Tips To Improve Your Upwind Riding

Jumping high and doing technical tricks might look impressive but many kiters are happy if they can just ride upwind without any problems. Here are 5 tips to help you do just that.

Yes, jumping high and doing technical tricks might look impressive, but a large majority of kiters are happy if they can just cruise around and ride upwind without any problems.

Of course once you know how it is easy and it is easy to forget the days when getting back to the same point on the beach you started mean’t everything.

To help you out through those stages and try to improve your upwind riding here are 5 hot tips  to improve your upwind riding from Laci Kobulsky and the guys and girls at ProKite Alby Rondina!

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photo: Laci Kobulsky / ProKite Alby Rondina

1. Take a bigger board

When the wind is lower and is harder to go upwind a lot of kiters try to solve that problem by increasing the kite size.

This is often not the best solution, since bigger kites have more lateral pull and its harder to edge with them against the wind. A very effective solution is actually to change the board for a bigger size, or even better, a surfboard!

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photo: Laci Kobulsky / ProKite Alby Rondina

2. Get some speed

90% of beginners who try to go upwind make the mistake of thinking that they need to start edging and riding in an upwind direction the moment they are out of the water and start of the ride.

The reality is that it is like riding a bike up a hill, it is very hard to start pedaling in the middle of the hill. Better first to aim little downwind, get the speed and then edge and go harder upwind.

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photo: Laci Kobulsky / ProKite Alby Rondina

3. Correct your body position

Fix your body position when going upwind! Body weight should be on your back leg heel and the front leg should be straight and leading the direction. With your head you should be looking upwind where you want to go which should help turn your shoulders and hips towards the direction you want to go.

Keep your hands and arms straight and centered on the bar and do not pull the bar too much, …keep it on “sweet spot”.

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photo: Laci Kobulsky / ProKite Alby Rondina

4. Fix on a goal and work with the wind

Always find a target that you aim to reach. Look at what upwind trajectory other kiters have and estimate where you can get to. It can be some point at the beach, a boat, it doesn’t matter, just that you are paying attention to where you want to go and where you end up.

Then work with the wind. If you feel the wind is lower in some areas then go slightly less upwind at that point and if you feel stronger wind then use it to go harder upwind.

You can often see and predict the wind just by looking at the water in front of you.

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photo: Laci Kobulsky / ProKite Alby Rondina

5. It's only in your head!

If you ride in one line starting at the beach and try your tricks there you will be always under pressure to get back upwind. Instead why not first focus on getting upwind a bit and then ride and try your tricks there. You will feel more secure as you will have some space to drop downwind in case you fall or the wind drops.

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photo: Laci Kobulsky / ProKite Alby Rondina


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