pipelinez wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 09, 2018 1:46 pm
quick question about boots, im currently riding a cab xcal 141x43 with straps at about ~80kg/175lbs, it seems hard at times to hold the edge/go upwind consistently.
Haven't been kitesurfing that long, started earlier this year, but i've been riding wakeboard at cables since ~2009.
Anyone of you guys have experience with friends/yourself progressing onto boots early in their/your kite career?
Got told that i occasionally still have that "wakeboarding"-stance while edging, i.e. not completely extending my front leg.
A factor might be that I feel like not having the control over the board i would like to have. I can't edge as hard as i would like to, since the board is pretty wide and no matter how hard i pull the toes of my front foot towards me, i won't get the board to angle enough upwind.
The only concerns i have is being dragged on my belly with the board behind my head. No matter how hard the impact on a cable you can just let go of the handle and thats it. How do you guys normally handle those situations?
Appreciate anyone who took the time to read this.
Your board size is fine for your weight. Not sure if your problem is holding the edge or going upwind, as these are separate issues.
Going upwind is a subtle and dynamic exercise and proficiency comes with practice. You can't just edge out the board and expect to go upwind - you need to find the balance where you are edging enough to prevent slipping downwind but not choking the board, getting the kite to fly forward in the window, build apparent wind and keep your speed up, etc.
I also spend a lot of time at the cable park, and coming from boots to straps feels scary at first because of the lack of control. You can try tightening your straps but ultimately the loose feeling of straps is something you will get used to. You should be able to edge plenty hard with foot straps however, so I suspect that if you find it difficult to keep an edge you may in fact be trying to edge too hard.
You mention pulling your toes up to edge? I don't know about this, as for me it feels more like digging in my heels. Maybe your weight is too far forward over your toes?
When kiteboarding I still occasionally ride straps, but I mostly ride boots. I find the falls softer than at the cable because I simply never go as fast as I do at the cable and generally the kite pulls upwards more than laterally.
Recovering from a wipeout in boots is only an issue the first two or three times because it's a new experience - you simply have to figure out how to re-orient your body in the water.
If you feel panicky simply hit your QR and try again. It's all good practise. Everybody who kites with boots have had to deal with it - it's simply a part of the progression.
If you find riding upwind challenging (as we all did at some point), I suggest sticking with the foot straps for the time being. It's a lot easier to take off the board and walk upwind with straps, as opposed to with boots.
Here's a short clip of me doing a beach start with boots.. just because