If you’re going to go kiteboarding… You need to know how to relaunch the kite from the water. With the proper technique, water relaunches are not difficult! Here are 5 steps to water relaunching your kiteboarding kite. This is for Leading Edge Inflatable kites with the leading edge facing down. You can use this technique to drift launch if nobody else is on the beach.
Let Go Of The Bar
Throughout this exercise, you do not need to use the bar for water relaunches. Holding the bar will result in choking or stalling the kite.
Determine If Kite Is To Your Right Or Left
From where you are, draw a line straight downwind. Now, is the kite to the right of you or to the left of you? If the kite is to your right, water relaunch the kite to the right. If the kite is to your left, water relaunch the kite to your left.
More Line Tension -> Kite 90 Degrees To Water
Reach above the bar and grab the line (if you want to water relaunch the kite to your right, use your left hand on the left side of the bar) more line tension in the beginning. In medium to light winds, more line tension is required to get the kite 90 degrees to the water. In strong winds the kite should require little if any tension to get 90 degrees to the water.
Light Line Tension -> Get The Kite To The Edge Of The Wind Window
From Step Three to Step Four is where most people make their big mistake. The common problem people make is they continue to pull the line hard causing the kite to go beyond 90 degrees and fall back on itself, leading edge facing up. As soon as the kite gets close to 90 degrees, push the line away! Do not let go yet, just push the line away because now little tension is needed to keep the kite 90 degrees to the water. Be patient and get the kite to the edge of the wind window.
Guide The Kite Up -> Let Go Of Line
Once you begin to feel less “pull” from the kite, gently give the line a little more tension to get the kite off the water. Once the kite is off the water, let go of the line and use the control bar.
The key to the 5 steps to water relaunching a kiteboarding kite is finesse. The people that “pull” or use “muscle” struggle the most. Not much strength is required for water relaunching. Technique is everything. If you’re still not confident with water relaunches, schedule a lesson with us and we’ll get you confident making water relaunches in any condition.
Sometimes it’s helpful to visualize the common mistakes when water relaunching a kiteboarding kite. Water relaunches are not intuitive and does require some skill. From our experience on the water, here are three common mistakes.
Pulling On The Bar
One of the most common mistakes when water relaunching is to pull on the control bar. It will be very difficult, if at all possible, to water relaunch by only pulling in on the bar. The best way to fix this is to refer to “Step One”, let go of the bar. Follow the steps above to then water relaunch the kite.
Pulling the Line Too Much
It is okay to pull the outside steering line. But as soon as the kite becomes vertical to the water, push the outside steering line away. If the steering line is pulled in too much, the kite will backstall. To fix a backstall, let go of everything and go backwards away from the kite.
Letting Go Too Soon
A third common mistake is when the kite is vertical to the water. Some kiteboarders will let go of the line and control bar altogether. The kite will push forward in this situation. To correct this, push the line out until the kite leaves the water. As the kite is going up, then let go of the line.
Lightwind Water Relaunches
Lightwind water relaunches can be difficult. We break down how to do a lightwind water relaunch here.
Have questions or stuck on a certain step? Send us a message!