- 03 September 2015 | Kiteboarding
In the kiteboarding universe, windy days can easily mean crowded waters. When dozens of near-invisible kite lines cross the skies, accidents can happen. Learn how you and others can lower chances of suffering unwanted crashes.
With more than 20 riders jumping, accelerating and performing tricks in the water, it's never easy to think and act fast. Knowing kitesurfing's right of way rules is mandatory, but we never know what others are about to do.
For example, if a rider falls off, the lines will be invisible on the water, and they will easily catch the fins of fellow windsurfers, surfers, and kiteboarders.
The general rule of thumb is that we must show consideration and respect for others out in the water, even if, sometimes, you hold priority over them. It's a matter of attitude and etiquette.
Giving thumbs up and asking permission will also lead to fewer collisions and conflicts. Let's take a look at a few good practices aimed at those kiteboarders wishing to have a good time in the (crowded) bays, lakes, rivers and seas of the world:
1. Avoid riding close to friends or other kiteboarders - lines and kites may become tangled;
2. If you're a kitesurfing beginner, sail in a separate area - beachgoers and advanced riders will thank you;
3. Scan the surroundings and continually measure distance from others - having time to react is a safety measure;
4. Adapt your course to what others are doing - become predictable and others will follow;
5. Keep your kite as vertical as possible - you will be reducing the potential conflict area;
6. Don't jump over other riders - that's disrespectful and dangerous;
7. Ride defensively if you're in a shipping channel - avoid close encounters with other riders in this area;
8. Always give way to surfers and bodyboarders in the waves - kite lines can cut flesh;
9. Don't deliberately maneuver into a right of way position - snaking is disrespectful;
10. Kites, lines, and foils are killing weapons - always play it safe;