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Lots of valuable articles from Rick Iossi, FKA Inc.
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Postby RickI » Wed Mar 17, 2004 9:15 pm

Reliable kite leash function is CRITICAL in the sport of kiteboarding. Wondering whether something with the power to hurl you dozens or hundreds of meters or to move a mini van will actually STOP or depower on demand isn't a great situation.

Having an unreliable kite leash is similar to driving routinely with brakes that may or MAY NOT work and just accepting the situation. To some degree due to limitations in devices we have had to accept this situation somewhat to date.

The manufacturers seem to be listening, learning along with the rest of us and are innovating new systems to improve the reliability of proper leash ("BRAKE"), functioning. Still more improvement may be needed to increase reliability. This should be a simple topic, BUT IT ISN'T SIMPLE AND WE NEED TO PAY ATTENTION AND ACT WITH CARE.

So, what are some of the problems that have interfered with proper kite depowering leash functioning:

1. Can't release the chicken loop.


Can't unhook due to force on hook or twisting of the loop on to the hook, snap shackle won't open or properly release the chicken loop, pin release won't release easily enough.


Consider using a release mechanism that is regularly maintained and tested. The accident experience implies that just "hooking in" may not be all that safe. Of course using an attachment/release mechanism maybe not real safe either if it doesn't release. Few absolutes in this but we need to do something to improve reliable leash performance. Pay attention to new developments and experience with new and existing systems. AVOID circumstances that FORCE you to use the leash by using good judgment and carefully built experience.

There is lots more information and experience detailed on this in:

and many other threads.

Soon to follow:

2. Insufficient Leash Length

3. Twisting of lines/leaders, line breakage

4. Inadvertant release of leash attachment by powered kite

Sounds complicated, maybe, then again that is where things are at currently.

Originally posted at:


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