Contrary to what many people believe, choosing and getting the best kite to learn kitesurfing is not an easy task. There are many questions that go through your head at the same time. Should I buy a equipment or should I rent it? Should I by a new kite or a used one?
But these are not the only questions you probably have. You are probably wondering also what type of kite you should by, right?
You are on your first steps on kitesurfing and you don’t you want to make a mistake. At this point, you have probably end up in Duotone, Fone, Cabrinha webistes and you only found too much technical information about kites…. That´s why we have developed this guide for humble earthlings and not for high tech engineers. But first, here you have an idea about what are the most important features that a kite for beginners should have (and for somebody who is starting to learn kite)
Top features that should have a friendly kite to learn kitesurfing:
EASY RELAUNCH + GOOD STABILITY + MUCH DEPOWER + LARGE WIND RANGE
Our recommendation: new Delta or hybrid kite
In this article we will try to help you to choose the best kite to learn kitesurfing and the most suitable equipment for you! Moreover, we will also help you to solve many questions when it comes to find the most suitable kite equipment for beginners.
Are you wondering what is the best kite to learn kitesurfing? Then, keep reading!
A Practical guide to help you buy your first kitesurf equipment if you are a beginner
Firstly, let´s begin with the idea of renting kitesurfing equipment. Although renting may sound like a good idea, we do not recommend it at the beginning since the rental of kitesurfing equipment has its risks. You will be fully responsible for what may happen to the equipment. What seemed like a perfect kite day may not end as expected. Afterwards, it is your money…. Then, if you are sure that this sport is for you, why not buy a kitesurf equipment and be independent from the start? Rentals are fine when you travel and you don’t want to take all the equipment with you or in the event you only want to kite for a couple of days. Think of this as a car rental. You don’t rent when you are learning!
Given the points of having understood that a rental kite is not the best kite to learn kitesurfing since it is risky, here we introduce a guide to help you to buy your first kitesurfing equipment depending on your needs and budget. Furthermore, we will answer the eternal question: How much does a kitesurf equipment cost?
Top recommendations to buy kite equipment for beginners:
Before buying your first kitesurf equipment, you should first ask yourself a few questions:
- Where will you kite the most often?
- What are the wind conditions normally there?
To the first question, you already have the answer and for the second question better you ask to your friends who are already in your area. You can also search for information online
In order to buy the most suitable kite equipment to learn kite, you need to know how is the wind in your home spot to determine what kite measurements you need. In general, to cover the entire navigable wind range for beginners, you will need a pair of kites, one “large” for weaker winds, and one “small” for stronger winds. However, the big and the small are always relative, since weighing 50 kg is not the same as 90 kg. Is that confusing for you? Don´t worry, later we will help you to choose the measure you need according to your size and the wind range but first, let´s discuss a little bit more about whether you want to buy a new, semi-new or used kitesurf equipment. Hence, here you have the pros and the cons of buying new, semi-new and used kite equipment to learn kitesurfing:
The 3 options you have when we talk about buying the best kite equipment for beginners
1st Option – Buy new equipment to learn kitesurfing
Buying new material is always a great investment. You will have a kite with a VERY long life ahead. Also, you can always take care of it in the way you think is appropriate and you can save yourself more than a disgust with warranty problems (you can have a 2-year warranty) or a dishonest seller. Moreover, you will always have the option of selling it again for a good price if you want to change your kite and get back a good part of the investment.
The downside is … prices, which tend to be high for leading brands, and, as we always say: if you break something new at first, it will hurt a lot more than if you buy something used and cheap.
Recommendation: If you plan to buy new kites and you are starting learning kitesurfing, the best option is to buy from previous seasons. For example, most brands launch their new seasons around July / August and you can always find new material deals from the same season or from the past at a discount of between 25% and 50%.
Prices: On the best brands, you can expect to spend on kites and bars between € 1,000 and € 1,900.
2nd option: Buying Semi-new equipment to learn kite
The second option that we put on the stage is to buy a semi-new kite equipment. We understand for semi-new equipment as kites of the current year or last year kites with a very little use. You will find many kites of this type in the second-hand market as many people sell their kites for lack of time or to renew them for the new season kites. If you search well, you will be able to find incredible deals on almost new equipment for much less. Also, you can always negotiate and get it even at a better price!
The negative part is, obviously, that you have to deal with people whom you do not know and they may be dishonest by selling kite equipment with some hidden defect (especially if you do not have much experience yet). Later we will explain what to look for when you buy a used equipment.
Likewise, most kiters are honest people and surely you will not have problems, but if you can, we recommend you to go with professionals or let yourself be advised by someone with experience.
Recommendation: The best time to buy semi-used kite equipment in a very good condition and at a good price is between July and September, since all the new equipment has started to go on sale and people want to renew material.
Prices: In top brands, you can find prices for semi-new kitesurf kites between € 600 and € 1000.
3rd option: Buy second-hand used kitesurfing equipment
The last option you have is to buy used equipment. A used kitesurf equipment is the best option for people who are still not 100% convinced whether or not this is their sport. Also, this is a good choice for people that can only kite a short time a year.
In the second-hand kitesurfing market you can find many kites of different years and conditions. For that reason, you will find kites with repairs and pores. Don’t worry, if the repair is well done and the pores are clogged, you will still have a kite for a long time.
The negative part is … you buy something used and if it has not been treated well, in the long term it will give you some other problems. As we say, good, pretty and cheap it doesn´t last forever my friend 🙂 Hence, from time to time, you should check that there are no likings on the valves, specially every time before you go for a kite trip. After all, you don’t want to end up crying in the Caribbean with a liking kite
Prices: It will depend on the year of the kite, its use, repairs .. But in this case the prices can range from € 200 to € 600.
All this considered, when it comes whether to buy a new, a semi-new or a used kitesurfing equipment if you are a bloody beginner, better you buy a new kite from the last season (if you can afford it). In case you go for the option to buy a used kite, here we give you some tips:
I want to learn kitesurfing but I don´t have a kite yet. Should I buy a new kite or an used second hand kite?
So far, you have an idea about the differences of buying new or second hand equipment to learn kite. But yet, the question is still in your head: Should I buy an old kite or a new kite?
Well, that will be also according to your economic level. If you can afford it, as we have remarked before, it is a good idea to buy new equipment. You will be the first one to release its security systems, you will know that the lines are new and the valves are in good condition too.
Ok, and now you are probably thinking, where the hell I am going to find 1.000 euros to buy new equipment? In that case go for a used kite 🙂 Here you have some of our recommendations in case you decide to buy a used kite:
What should we review when we buy a used kitesurfing kite?
In kites it is important to look at the trailing edge (the rear part of the kite), especially in the central area since this is where the kite suffers the most over time. Another aspect to check is that the seams are in good condition. It is also important to check the condition of the kite’s bridles and above all, the area where the pulleys work (if any), since it can be overused and break while flying!
If you have repairs it is important to see that everything is well sewn and without folds or strange marks.
It is also essential to check if the kite loses air. For this, you just have to inflate it very hard and leave it for a while. If it loses air, it can be either a slightly detached valve (you will easily find this in older kites) or a small puncture. Replacing a valve or repairing a small puncture is very easy and cheap to do (a professional will charge you around € 20), but if it is the valve that fails, think that in the near future the others will also fail.
By the other hand and what it is most important, if you decide to buy a second-hand kite, DO NOT buy anything prior to 2010 because this is the year when there were the most changes regarding security systems and others.
Now that you already have an idea abut the differences between new and used kites, let´s see what kind of kites you can in the event you are on your first steps of kitesurfing! Down here we help you to find the most appropriate kite for beginners:
The best kite to learn kite
So far, we have discussed about buying or not a second hand kite. No matter your choice, it is time to see what options do you have when we talk about type of kites. Obviously, at the beginning you can be a little bit confused as you will to find on the market many types of kites..kitesurfing kites exist as many as disciplines we have: racing, for snow, for light winds, for waves, for everything, etc …
In short, there are several factors to take into account when we talk about choosing the best kite to learn kitesurfing…
Firstly, let’s start with the types of kites regarding their shape.
Types of kites that you can buy according to their shape
C shape kites
These are the most closed kites, the ones that accumulate the most air and the least advisable to start with. They are good for the pro since they are the fastest. However, if you are on your first steps of kitesurfing and you want to learn kite properly with a friendly kite for beginners, forget about them. Trying to learn kitesurfing with a C-shape kite is going to be hard buddy…
Bow type (flat)
Bow kites are perfect kites to learn kitesurfing as there are the ones that accumulate less air and forgive more mistakes. Also they have much depower that will help you specially in gusty conditions. However, its biggest drawback is that most brands stopped making them because of the delta boom, and then we’ll explain why we consider it one of the best for you.
Very versatile and advisable kites. Hybid kites have a lot of power and are also ok to learn too 🙂
This is the best option if you don’t find any bow kite in good condition. The deltas are the latest evolution of kites and also the best sellers. If you want a friendly kite to learn kitesurfing, nowadays the Delta kite is the best option on the market.
Do not look at them until you are use to kite with one of the previous ones for a while..
What is the best kite for beginners?
This is the most important point before buying a kite. If you do not do some kite lessons you will be a danger to yourself and those around you on the beach. We recommend that you do the course with qualified instructors
When buying the kite equipment, guide yourself by experienced people, be accompanied by a friend or acquaintance who practices kite. Having clarified this point, we can continue choosing kites.
1- Choosing a kite for its shape and construction
Foil, hybrid, flat, delta or C ?, which one do I buy ?.
Your first option should be trying t get a bow kite. It is the slowest kite in the market so you will have more reaction time to move it. In addition, its flat shape will make you hardly notice the gusts of wind that can come at any time. The wind is not always constant, and these types of kites are the best to weaken in situations of constant gusts (to depower is to stop creating resistance to the wind by raising the bar).
Since finding a bow kite second hand that is in good condition is somewhat complicated, you can go for a delta kite. It is the most sold kite and its market is huge. It is easy to relaunch from the water and very versatile in all situations.
2- Choose according to the discipline of the kite: Race, wave, freeride, etc
In this case we recommend buying the hardest kites on the market: the wave kites. These kites are the ones that usually have the most reinforcements. The reinforcements that you see in the image below are the ones that will help the kite to resist all the barbarities that the kite will endure while you learn. When we talk about learning to kite, choosing a kites for waves is obvious; almost all of them are prepared to be swallowed by a wave and resist it in one piece. Although in case you find on the second hand market a freeride kite at a good price and close to your house, go for it, it is also a good option.
3- Choose and buy your kitesurf kite according to your kiting area and your weight
Ask which knots are repeated the most times throughout the year. Then weigh yourself and look at this table.
The following table is indicative for winds of 13 to 17 knots.
|9 a 10m||50 a 60kg|
|11 a 12m||60 a 70kg|
|12 a 14m||70 a 80kg|
|14 a 16m||80 a 90kg|
If there are more than 17 knots, which is already a good wind to have enough fun, you will go down one position on the size scale, and if there are more than 22 knots we will go down two places. That is to say, with more than 17 knots those of 70 to 80 kilos will ride 11 and 12 meters, and from 22 knots they will go to 9 meters. Advice for beginners: it is better to always make a mistake to ride an small kite rather than large.
To start , we recommend you to buy a small kite, that is, for a person of about 75 kg and wind between 18 and 20 knots, no more than 9 meters. It is preferable not to carry a lot of power in your first days.
All this leads us to the conclusion as we have remarked at the beginning of having to carry two kites, which over time and if you like this sport will be a mandatory step to do. To give you an idea, a good kite pack would be 3 kites, depending on whether you move through many different kite spots, you want to kite in winter season or if you are one of those who always want to kite no matters any wind conditions
Conslusion: Top TIPS when buying a kite for beginners
After the paradox and to summarize, we will look for:
Shape: You can buy a Second-hand Bow kite or Delta kite, the latter can be new or second-hand. The delta kite is a good option not only for its market and variety, but also for the versatility and ease of relaunching from the water.
Discipline: wave or freeride because of its reinforcements.
Buy the exact kite size regarding your weight and the wind where you usually kite. If you want to learn with safely, better you buy a kite according to the wind, rather than being overpowered
If you buy a second-hand kite, remember to go with someone who understands, a friend who is up in kitesurfing or make a commitment to someone you know, to accompany you to buy the kite, if it is possible on a windy day to set it up and have it tested.
Be sure that the kite is not older than 2010, that it hardly has repairs or better none.
Finally, don´t buy a 5-line kites, look only for 4 lines. The 5th line usually slits the kite if it turns in the water.
In conclusion, the bow and delta kites are the best kites to learn kitesurfing, especially because they are easy to relaunch and they have a wide wind range. Furthermore, they have much stability on the air what will make your life easy when riding your first steps.
Before buying a kite, it is better to ask a lot and be annoying rather than being wrong on your first kite, since it can be the main reason for abandoning this wonderful sport.