Buying a kiteboard
Tips to make your purchase of a kiteboard a success
In the forest of kiteboards there are a lot of shapes and possibilities, so we have developed the guide below to help you buy a kiteboard that meets your needs. If after reading the information below, you do not yet know which choice to make, we would be happy to help you with the phone 085-273 33 11 or the e-mail [email protected]
Over the years many different types of kiteboards have appeared on the market that differ from each other in shape and sailing characteristics. The best-known species is of course the twin tip, with which the vast majority of kite surfers sail. The various types of models are compared below:
Allround/Freeride boards are real all-rounders, they are super comfortable boards that are perfect for cruising and occasionally a jump. These boards generally have a bit more flex, which results in soft landings and smooth ride through the choppie water. Because these boards are more forgiving, they fit perfectly with the wishes of a novice guy.
Freestyle boards are a lot stiffer than Freeride boards, giving them more pop to carry out your freestyle tricks. Freestyle boards are also a lot sturdier built so they can withstand the hard landings you sometimes get to see for yourself.
Wakestyle boards are designed for riders who want to perform thick wakestyle tricks and rock on kickers and sliders. The construction of wakestyle boards is very similar to that of wakeboards. The boards have a lot of rocker and stiffness, this makes for a lot of pop and soft landings. Wakestyle boards often have reinforced inserts so that they can be sailed with boots. Thanks to the boots you have more control over your board and it is also possible to take a size bigger than you would normally do. This is a sensible choice because wakestyle boards generally have less low end due to the rocker.
Waveboards are made to kite in the waves. The boards are reinforced so that they do not break down by the forces released during kiting. Most waveboards have inserts so you can sail them with footbands. Because the waveboards are a lot larger and have more volume (driving power) than twin tips, you can sail with a smaller kite than you would normally do.
Freestyle wave kiteboards
A trend of recent years has been the waveboards with a blunt/shredded nose, most brands nowadays have such a model in their collection. These boards are excellent for strapless airs to experience and are designed for the strapless freestyler.
Type of kite surfer
When purchasing a waveboard it is important to ask yourself what kind of kiter you are. In the waveboard scene there are several different types of riders, like kiters who prefer to sail a small petalboard and actively/powered with their kite in the waves. And you have the opposite pole that prefers to sail a large waveboard with a small kite so that he can experience the real' surfing feeling' and for a moment forget that he has a kite in the air.
Waveboards come with different types of fin setups, so you have a thruster setup (three fins) and a quad setup (four fins). A quad setup is looser on the golf and gives a skatey feel, this is because the rear fin is missing. A quad setup also ensures a board that runs better and is faster down the line.
The construction of a kiteboard says a lot about the board's sailing characteristics. The technical terms that can help you in your search for the perfect kiteboard are explained below.
The rocker of a kiteboard is the curve in the board that runs from tip to tip. The rocker has a major influence on the sailing characteristics of a kiteboard.
Boards with little rocker have a larger contact surface area with the water and will therefore plan faster and build up speed. If you're looking for a light wind board, a board with little rocker is a wise choice. The disadvantage of a flat board (small rocker) is that you are overpowered faster and suffer more from choppy (cluttered) water. The chance to catch up with your tip in the water is also greater than a board with a lot of rocker.
Lots of rocker
A lot of rocker can be found in wakestyle boards. Boards with a lot of rocker are generally slower, making them easy to control in strong winds and during fast-hard landings. The downside is that the boards are not very efficient in light wind, so it is recommended to take a size bigger than you would normally do.
The vast majority of kiteboards on the market have a medium rocker, and perform well in every style. This is a compromise, of course the board will never perform as well in the field of wakestyle as a real wakestyle orientated kitboard.
The concave of a kiteboard is the curve in the bottom of the board that runs from rail to rail. Concave mainly ensures that water is pushed in a certain direction, resulting in a board that runs better upwind and is faster. Kiteboards are generally executed with a single or double concave.
Compared to kiteboards without concave, single concave boards plan faster, edging them better, sailing better upwind and giving more control and grip. A single concave can therefore be found mainly on freeride and beginner boards.
A double concave ensures: stiffness in the middle, more pop (because the water is pushed to the tips), soft landings (the concave breaks the water easily). A double concave can therefore be found mainly on freestyle and wakestyle boards.
The outline is the circumference of the kiteboard when it lies on the ground and you look at it from above. You have kiteboards with a round outline and board where the outline is very straight, below the differences are explained.
Boards with a round outline carven super good, this makes it fun toys for the waves. Also, a round outline is better controllable in strong wind conditions and cuts through the chop like a knife. Boards with a round outline are mainly freeride/allround oriented and are ideal for beginners.
Boards with a straight outline provide more pop and are therefore mainly freestyle oriented. The straight outline also ensures a more stable board because the rail makes a lot of contact with the water.
As with snowboards, kiteboards have a certain flex. You can feel the flex when you put your board upright and press the center of the board with your hand. The amount of flex is usually divided into the categories: hard, soft and medium.
Boards with little flex can build up a lot of pop and are relatively fast. The disadvantage is that the boards are not very comfortable in choppy water. Wakestyle boards generally have little flex.
Boards with a lot of flex are relatively slow but very comfortable in choppy water. Beginners & Freeride boards generally have a lot of flex.
Boards with a medium flex are the most all-round and suitable for the most diverse conditions. Freestyle boards generally have a medium flex.
I am a novice kitesurfer, what do I need?
As a beginner, you are looking for a board that quickly planes, walks high and easily starts watering. A slightly larger board is therefore a sensible choice, so that the above needs can be met. As a beginner, it's best to buy an all-round or freeride board. Sure, you can also start with a freestyle board, but the learning curve will take a lot longer, so you will have less time having fun on the water.
Many people think that you'll soon get bored on a beginners board, but this isn't the case for a large part of the kiters. With a beginnerboard you can enjoy cruising and occasionally make a jump, and let this be just what 90% of the kiters likes to do. Have you become a little wiser and would you like to see your kiteboards? Check our kiteboards of all top brands.