Wingsurfing vs Kitesurfing. Which one is better?

 

Are you wondering what the main differences between kitesurfing and wingsurfing are? Then this is your lucky day, because in this post we will solve some doubts about kitesuf & wingsurf.

Over the last few years, wingsurfing has started to gain mainstream attention just like kitesurfing did around ten years ago. Due to this rise in popularity of wingsurfing, many people have started to question which sport they should choose from these two!

In short, wingsurfing is accessible to new riders and doesn’t require a lot of equipment or great skills. On the other hand, kitesurfing does require specialized equipment and enough skills to safely surf the waves. Another main difference is in the speed, and the jumps – Kitesurfing is all about high speed and jumps as the size of the power kites is really big. On the other hand, wingsurfing is more beginner-friendly, and the handheld surf means that the speed will remain within a comfortable range.

So if you are new to this whole scene, you can try wingsurfing, which is easy and fun. But if you want an adrenaline rush & faster speeds, then go with kitesurfing, but you will probably need to attend a kitesurfing school to learn it properly.

>> Kitesurfing guide in Sri Lanka

 

wingsurf & kitesurf. Which one is more difficult

Wingsurfing vs. Kitesurfing – A Closer Look

 

The modern form of kitesurfing as we know it today started in 1995. But the history of kitesurfing dates back to the 1800s when the famous George Pocock found a way to move carts on both water and land using a 4 line control system. Even today, the same 4 line control system is used in boats and even kitesurfing.

If we look at wingsurfing, its modern form started in 2011 when Tony Logosz (designer & co-founder of Slingshot Kiteboarding) made the first-ever prototype for wingsurfing dubbed “Slingwing”. This Slingwing was used in conjunction with a large foil to test its effectiveness under real-life conditions. Then in Mar-Apr 2018, two different types of handheld wings were tested by Flash Austin on a SUPfoil.

Then in the summer of 2019, several kitesurf manufacturers started the production of handheld inflatable wings, which proved to be the turning point for wingsurfing – From this point onwards, the sport of wingsurfing is only rising, and many people say that it will even eventually challenge other wind-based sports.

Another wind sport is called windsurfing which can confuse a lot of people. To make it simple, the wing used in the wingsurfing is handheld and not attached to the board. On the other hand, the wing is indeed attached to the board, and its size is way bigger in windsurfing.

Now that we understand the history behind both of these sports, let’s look at different aspects which make them unique from each other:

Wingsurfing

 

In wingsurfing, the sailor holds the wing in their hands while standing on a board. Although the size of the wing is small in wingsurfing, it generates enough sideways and upwards force to propel the board over the water.

The smaller size of the wing used in wingsurfing means that the speed will be much less than in kitesurfing. But this reduction in speed represents a very interesting opportunity for the surfers – Slow speed means that even the beginners can enjoy wingsurfing with minimal equipment. And the skill level required for windsurfing is also not too high!

Skill Level: It is beginner-friendly and can be learned relatively quick (a few hours at best). Although it will still take some time to develop the required expertise, one can get started with wingsurfing easily and quickly. When compared to kitesurfing, the wingsurfing is quite easy to do!

Equipment: A handheld sail, board, and specialized clothing are required to prevent any damage. When compared to kitesurfing, the equipment required for wingsurfing is very minimal, and all that’s required is good and consistent wind.

Ideal For: Wingsurfing is a more casual form of surfing on the water with the help of wind. And since the speed of the wingsurfing board remains in the comfortable range & also doesn’t produce higher jumps, it is ideal for anyone who wants to have fun! The learning curve is steep, and the required equipment is minimal as well – So if you just want to have fun without any dangers such as high speed and high jumps, then go for it!

 

>> Take a look at some of the best wing foil spots in the world

>> Learn wing foiling in Sri Lanka

 

Kitesurfing

 

Kitesurfing or also known as kiteboarding, utilizes a large power kite to help the rider surf through the water. If we look at wingsurfing, the sail is handheld and very small. But in kitesurfing, a very large kite is used, which is attached to the harness of the kiter.

Due to the large size of the kite, it generates enough power to move both the board as well as the surfer at high speed. This speed can also be used for bigger and higher jumps, too!

Due to the large-sized kite, specialized equipment, and the complexity involved in this sport, proper learning is a must!

Skill Level: It is a wind sport that requires quite some skill and therefore proper training. And since the large power kite can generate a lot of momentum, kitesurfing can get dangerous if it is not done correctly. Although kitesurfing is relatively difficult when compared to wingsurfing, it can still be learned by joining a kitesurfing school (they are present all over the world!).

Equipment: Some of the required equipment for kitesurfing includes a large power kite, board, harness, and control bar.

Ideal For: Kitesurfing is an extreme sport and can get dangerous if the operator is not skilled enough. So if you are someone who loves to ride the waves at fast speed and can handle bigger jumps, then go for kitesurfing! It is best for those who seek adventure and love an adrenaline rush!

kitesurf vd wngsurf. Which one is more difficult

Conclusion

Still not sure which sports you should try? Then go ahead and try both kitesurfing as well as wingsurfing to get an idea of how both of them feel. As mentioned earlier, you will probably need to join a kitesurfing school to learn the ins and outs of this sport before you can actually kitesurf in an unsupervised environment.
Wingsurfing on the other hand allows you to get started relatively easily since the learning curve is steep and fast. And once you get to learn how to wingsurf properly, it will also help you a lot with learning how to kitesurf!

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