NeWORBiT wrote:strange to hear this again, I took one kiteboarding lesson in 2007 (but didn't actually get into it until last year) and my instructor said something similar to PVITfrumBYRAM;
"The nice thing about PASA is it includes certifications for hang gliding, paragliding and other air sports"......
Aaaaaaa NO. Mythbusters where are you? I am very new to kiteboarding, but I have been a dues paying and rated hang glider pilot since 1979, a certified hg instructor, and a hang gliding / paragliding club officer responsible for paying for hang gliding / paragliding site liability insurance annual premiums and special event fees. I make the checks out to USHPA, (United States Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association). If you want to fly a regulated and insured paragliding / hang gliding site in the US, you must be a current USHPA member and have the appropriate USHPA rating. No one has ever showed up with a PASA paragliding / hang gliding insurance and rating card at our flying sites, if they had we could not permit them to fly. PASA has absolutely nothing to do with HG or PG. Maybe there's some BS (boisterous statement) in their mission statement about pg and hg.
Where is this rumor that PASA has anything to do with HG or PG coming from? Regarding kite sports though it's good to hear that there is an alternative to IKO.
Maybe the only connection is the insurance company PASA uses. I'm not saying a hang glider with some PASA card can fly at a USHPA regulated site. PASA uses First Flight Insurance. I think someone trying to obtain this insurance must go through PASA. I think it is more related to kiteboarding but I know the hang gliding instructors in my area go through PASA for something. It probably only has to do with the local area for paragliding and hang gliding. I know the hang gliding instructors do obtain their USHGA certs in addition.
Sorry for any confusion. I was not trying to say that PASA is some governing body. Just that they are an alternative to IKO and that they branch out a little further than just kiteboarding so they may have a motive to give customer service.
Toby also mentioned another insurance alternative about a month ago.
kiwimike wrote:business did not change after quitting iko. in my school i keep one iko instructor who can give students one of those crappy cardboard riders card if they ask for it. this happens about once a month. i am seriously pissed with iko. 4 nights of staying up late ringing them. at one stage i thought about flying to the DR to try to get my money back. it is only beginner riders who will do the iko instructor trainer course, anyone who has been kiting for a while knows what a ripoff iko is. an instructor coming off the instructor training course is marginally better than someone with nothing at all. i train my own instructors now and try to keep the same ones each year to maintain a high standard. we dont get alot of students in my location so it is important to get them indepent so they can get gear off me if they decide to take the sport up. learn2kitesurf.com looks auesome but i tried to sign up and got the error message
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kiwimike wrote:seriously you bunch of pricks at IKO i want my money back.
Classic! Good on ya Mike for making a stand. It is difficult if you are a school to make a protest against things in the industry when they are wrong. I established www.Learn2Kitesurf.com to offer Kite schools and individual instructors alike, + dealers and shops regardless of brand or affiliation a way to market and network collectively for FREE. It is a project that needs feedback and content from members to run it well. But it is off to a good start as is. One thing we are not doing is licensing. Keeps us out of the $$ conflict issue.
Hey Mike. Did you notice any business drop off by not being IKO? I have been teaching professionally since 1999 and never felt I needed an IKO endorsement of my skills. I do see value in instructors courses for those who have yet to gain any experience. But every year I am contacted by IKO instructors looking for work, they always say they are qualified but when asked for references have 99% of the time just completed a very expensive Instructor course by a visiting UK couple and have never taught kiteboarding Some have also only just learned to ride from the same instructors. This seems well off form for IKO examiners. Anyone else experience this?
So you dont need to be an IKO instructor or have your school certified by IKO and you can still be an instructor and have a legal kiteschool?!
I have been kiting since 2007, i am thinking of opening my own business and have a kiteschool, but i dont know where to start! Should i get IKO instructor licence or not, that is the question now xD
And again, are there any other alternatives to IKO, anybody?
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Depends on what region you want to start your school. I know there are other organizations in Germany; in England, in France and probably many more countries, but also think IKO is still the biggest one and/or has most name recognition. I suggest you check some local forums in your area and see what pops up
I am an IKO instructor myself and do find their teaching schedule to be pretty good, but as with most things it all depends on the user. I've seen IKO instructors that couldn't do a backroll, yet they were teaching beginners. Or other would-be instructors that needed tons of 'shadowing-hours' after completing the instructor course before they were officially certified by IKO, yet during this time they did teach beginners without any supervision so that doesn't really seem to make sense either.
In the end it comes down to safety and responsibility and having a certification doesn't guarantee that either way. A big think for a school would be the liability insurance which would be easier to get for an IKO school (supposedly) but I am not sure how well this insurance actually works when a person is (seriously) injured.
iko is seriously a rippoff. if you want to start your own school i suggest you go work at another school for a few months. try to follow a few different instructors. i wish i could have done this before i started teaching 7 years ago. i would have got far more value out of following some experienced instructors around for some lessons than i would have got out of doing the IKO instructor course. i had darren marshal run my course and please dont get me wrong he did an excellent job but sitting in a classroom for 4.5 days is not the best way to learn how to be an instructor. the 2 hours of practise teaching was more valuable than anything else i did.