Top 8 Beginner Kiteboarding Questions!

Hey guys! Welcome to the Tona Blog. Here we will be showcasing videos and ideas that we think may be of interest to you guys and it’s all going to be here in one place. Today we have a video made by our team rider Jake Kelsick about the top 8 beginner kiteboarding questions.

1: How Much Does Kiteboarding Gear Cost? – This depends on if you buy new or used gear, prices can also vary from brand to brand. If you are just getting into kiting, I’d say take some lessons and rent gear until you are pretty safe and not putting your kite in the trees every session. Then once you are safe and self-sufficient you can look into buying some gear. The rough cost for NEW kiteboarding gear is 2600 USD – 3600 USD  you can see a price breakdown of Tona’s Boards here and Tona’s Kite here. Gear is the last big expense for getting into kiteboarding but once you have the gear its a game changer as you can ride whenever you want and kiteboarding is basically free from then on because you are powered by the wind! The gear from Tona kiteboarding that I would recommend if you are just getting in the game is the Tona Joyride & The Tona Stratus. The Joyride is a great board to learn on but is also a board you can progress on. Most people make the mistake of getting a board that is too basic and outgrow it within a few months of consistent sessions. The Joyride will progress with you for years to come. Same goes with the Tona Stratus, this kite is designed to an all-around kite, and it truly is a great one kite to have in the quiver. Has everything someone riding at a high level would need but is also friendly and forgiving which makes it perfect for learning on and getting steady progression out of it.

2: How Much Do Kite Lessons Cost? –  This is the first big expense for getting into kiteboarding and depends a lot on where in the world you learn. But roughly the cost of kite lessons in North America and the Caribbean are anywhere from $90 USD an hr all the way up to $150 USD an hr. It usually takes around 10 – 12 hrs to get to where you are riding, going upwind and a safe and self-sufficient rider. So you are looking at $900 – $1500 USD for a 10hr course. Kiteboarding lessons aren’t cheap but are worth every penny! I have seen too many people try and learn from a friend for free and end up either destroying their friend’s kite or getting such a scare from being dragged into the trees that it puts them off of kiteboarding. Don’t risk it, take some lessons to learn the basics and enjoy kiteboarding for the rest of your life!  Kiteboarding is an extreme sport and can be VERY DANGEROUS if you don’t know the basics so put in the time to become a safe and knowledgeable rider for yourself and everyone else at the beach. 

3: Does A Wakeboard Work For Kiteboarding & Does A Kiteboard Work For Wakeboarding? – Wakeboards usually don’t work well behind a kite because they have too much rocker which is the banana in the board. Which makes them slow and power-hungry. Kite boards on the other hand have a lot less rocker which allows you to get going easier and keep speed with a lot less effort. So I wouldn’t recommend using a wake board for kiteboarding, but you can use a kite board for wakeboarding. Most kiteboards will feel a little fast behind a boat or cable and tend to land a little harder than a wakeboard but they will work. Tona kiteboarding actually makes a hybrid board called the Tona FLOW which is designed for this exact purpose. If you like kiteboarding and going to the cable but only want to have one board it will be hard to find a better board than the FLOW.  It has the perfect rocker line for feeling nice behind a kite and riding great at the cable, also has nice flex in the tips which makes hitting rails feel like you’re slicing through butter. Learn more about the FLOW here.

4: Are Kite Bars Interchangeable ? – Most kite bars should work on any kite. The only thing you need to check for is if you have a 4 or 5 line kite. 90% of kites are 4 lines so there is a high chance you have a 4 line kite. You should also check your pigtail attachments some kites have different line attachments, that may not match the bar you have. But once the line attachments match the bar  it should work fine. The only issue you could potentially run into is over sheeting and back stalling which is where your kite stalls and flies backwards when you pull your bar in. If this is happening you can try sheeting in your powder strap and making sure your back lines are on the first knot furthest away from the kite. This will help make the front and back lines equal and hopefully stop any back stalling. Back stalling is caused by stretched front lines or in the case the front bridle lines being longer that the back line attachments. 

5: Can you kite board in the rain ? – This really depends on where you are riding in the world. Here in the Caribbean if its raining its best to come and see what the weather does. Sometimes the wind can change direction, get crazy windy or completely die so it’s always a good idea to be careful when riding in rain or story conditions. But with that said there are some places that the only time it’s good for kiting is in rainy/ stormy weather so in case its acceptable to ride in the rain but make sure to keep an eye on other riders and if you see everyone head back to the beach you might want to as well. Riding in light rain can be fun feels like someone is throwing little stones at you. 

6: Can you kite board alone ? – Kite boarding alone is possible but not recommended. It’s nice to have someone to help you launch and land and it’s also way safer to have someone else with you. You can have a lot of magical kite sessions without any issues but Kiteboarding is still an extreme sport and freak accidents can happen. That is why its always a good idea to have someone else with you in case you get hurt or need help. Much easier to get help when someone else is with you.

7: Who’s Faster A Windsurfer Or A Kite border? This is a question that people always ask especially if they are brand new to kiteboarding. So I googled it for ya, and here’s the answer. The current speed record for a Windsurfer is 53.27 knots and the current top speed for a Kiteboarder is 57.97 knots so, at the time of writing this, Kiteboarders are a good bit faster than windsurfers. 

8: When was kiteboarding invented?  This is another one of those questions that always seems to come up when people have questions about kiteboarding, and to be honest I didn’t know the full answer until making this video. Kiteboarding was invented by two brothers, Bruno Legaignoux and Dominique Legaignoux, from the Atlantic coast of France. They started developing kites in the late 1970s / early 1980s and then patented an inflatable kite design in November 1984. This design allowed big windsurf companies to start developing their own kites. So the idea of kiteboarding has been around for a while, but it didn’t really catch on globally until around 1998 / 2000. Pretty crazy right?

Before we wrap up here’s one last fun kiteboarding fact for ya! Kiteboarding hit Antigua & Barbuda in 2001 and Tona’s Co-Founder Andre Phillip was one of the early adopters who was getting hooked since then. It’s been a fun journey watching the sport grow and as a company being able to contribute to it with, stories, knowledge, and tools. Thanks for reading guys and gals!

Hopefully, this helps answer most of the questions that you might have had about kiteboarding. 

Make sure to say up to date with us on social.  @TonaLife @JakeKelsick
Peace, love & big ups! 
Jake