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Kitesurfing is a popular watersport these days, but if you’re just starting you might be wondering if lessons are really that important for learning how to do it.
Any time you’re trying to master a new skill or hobby you need to put in the hours to learn it, but is professional help required to master this particular sport?
Are kitesurfing lessons really worth it?
For beginners, it’s absolutely recommended to spend at least a few hours being professionally taught how to kitesurf. As kitesurfing is considered an extreme sport, you’ll need to learn the important safety aspect as well as the technique and equipment used.
Kitesurfing also involves being able to read weather and water conditions which is another crucial aspect that you’ll be taught.
Becoming an independent kiteboarder is the goal when starting out, and the only way to achieve this is with help from a professional.
You’ll need to know how to safely operate the gear out on the water and what to do in dangerous situations, and know how to do it on your own.
Thankfully, there are kitesurfing schools and instructors found just about anywhere this sport is practiced so it’s easy enough to get started.
Where Can I Get Kitesurfing Lessons?
Kitesurfing as a sport seems to be growing in popularity and with this growth comes the emergence of many new kitesurfing schools and classes popping up everywhere.
Some people might decide to learn when they’re on vacation at a popular kitesurfing spot and others will want to book in advance in their local area for more specialized lessons.
Kitesurfing schools are the easiest way to learn and they usually offer lessons depending on where your skill levels are.
You might take a group class with others who are just starting or choose private instruction, with costs varying depending on your choice.
Most come with certification at the end of your course, showing that you have been taught to international standards.
If you’re learning while on vacation, some hotels and local beaches even offer lessons right on the shore or directly through the accommodation.
You might not get enough experience to become a totally independent kiter in just one lesson, but it will equip you with the basics so you can have a bit of fun.
Private instructors can also be found in some areas, but you should always verify their credentials.
You’ll want a teacher who has lots of experience themselves and one that understands the safety concerns of the sport.
This is a case where cheaper is not better, so don’t simply look for the lowest cost.
Some people have taught themselves to kitesurf, and it can be done, although it’s not always recommended.
If you do choose to teach yourself, you’ll need to spend many initial hours on the shore learning how to operate a kite before you even consider getting into the water, and some people simply don’t have the patience for this type of learning.
What’s Involved in the Typical Kitesurfing Lesson?
Your first kitesurfing lesson will differ depending on your previous experience and they will also vary depending on the school.
Before starting any lessons, most schools will recommend you learn to fly a trainer kite first.
This gives you a basic understanding of how a kite works with and against the wind, and how to control it with the bar.
With an understanding of a trainer kite, you’ll usually have to show the instructor how much you know.
There may be a shorter stage of land training depending on your skills, which includes things like safety systems, bars, and how to control the kite, as well as key concepts including the wind window and safety.
Once you’ve established the basics of the kite, you can then move into the water.
Tandem body drags are the best first place to start and is a basic skill of the sport regardless of the conditions you kite in.
With knowledge of body dragging, you’ll be able to recover your board after a crash, and it’s almost always one of the first things you’ll learn, as well as how to relaunch the kite in the water.
After you learn the basics, you can then start practicing kiting with the board.
With these basic skills mastered, most people find they can take over learning for themselves from here.
How Many Kitesurfing Lessons Will I Need?
There’s no definitive number when it comes to determining how many kitesurfing lessons one will need.
The most important thing to consider is your skill level.
Those who have zero experience in kitesurfing or kiting will need many more hours compared to someone who has already been on the water or flown a kite before.
A typical kitesurfing lesson will be held in calm water as this gives you the ideal conditions to learn.
As your skills progress, you’ll be able to kite in windier conditions, but that will come much later as you start to feel confident.
Depending on the conditions around you, you may need more or fewer lessons until you’re ready to kite alone.
Another thing to consider is the format of your lessons.
Generally, people who learn in a one on one setting with an instructor will need less time to master the techniques.
People learning in a group or larger class won’t’ have as much time dedicated to them individually, and this usually requires some extra lessons.
To save yourself time and money, it’s best to purchase a trainer kite and practice using it before you consider starting any formal instruction.
Learning how to kitesurf can take time, but it’s a skill worth learning the right way.
If you’ve been considering brushing up on your kitesurfing skills or are a total beginner and want to know more, we’ve got the answers to some commonly asked questions about this extreme sport.
How Much Do Kitesurfing Lessons Cost?
Although the cost varies depending on the location and school, an average kitesurfing lesson taken in a small group of a few people is around $200 for a two-hour lesson.
The price increases for one on one lessons, or maybe even less for larger groups.
Private instructors not working with a school will have specific rates that they charge for lessons.
Are Group or Solo Kitesurfing Lessons Better?
There are pros and cons to both group and individual kitesurfing lessons so it will depend on the individual.
Although solo lessons are more expensive you might need fewer of them to grasp the basics., and they’re better for more specific teachings.
However, group lessons are good value for money and offer a pretty thorough general education.