A full kiteboarding package can cost anywhere from $1000 to $3000 depending on size, brand and year. We’ll break this article down into what is needed to get out on the water and how to choose your first kiteboarding gear. We’ll talk about second hand gear and if it’s worth buying. Keep in mind, once you learn how to kiteboard and everything’s purchased, wind is free.
How Much Should Kiteboarding Gear Cost
$600 – $2000 – The kite will be your big purchase. When looking to buy a kite, you want a kite that has good wind range, performs well and will last you. You want to make sure the kite is the right size for the area you’ll be kiteboarding in. If you’re not sure what size kite to get, contact your local school and they’ll help steer you in the right direction. Here’s an article on how to choose the right kite size for St. Petersburg.
$200 – $800 – The control bar is the second most important piece of equipment. It is what connects you to the kite. When looking at control bars, you want to make sure the safety system fully flags out. On earlier bars, there’s a safety line or flag line that goes up the center lines and sometimes that line is not long enough to fully cut the power from the kite. Most modern controls bars feature a system that’s clean, easy to use and fully cuts the power of the kite. Check out the three safety systems a newer control bar offers.
Kiteboard and Straps
$200 – $1000 – Although kiteboards look like wakeboards, there are some key differences. Kiteboards are designed to make it so that riders can go upwind easier than a wakeboard. One of the most important things when considering a kiteboard to purchase is size. You want to make sure to get the right size board that you can go upwind efficiently but a board that’s still fun to ride. Here’s some more information on kiteboard sizing.
$100 – $400 – Kiteboarders wear a harness that the control bar hooks into. This is what absorbs the energy of the kite so riders can stay out for hours without feeling exhausted. There are two main types of harnesses, waist harnesses and seat harnesses. With a waist harness we recommend two straps on each side to hold the spreader bar down and prevent it from riding up.
Pump and Safety Leash. Most “packages” will come with kiteboarding pumps. The pumps we use for kiteboarding are not anything special or fancy although there are some fancy pumps out there. Control Bars come with a safety leash, but if you get a second hand bar it may not come with one.
Second Hand Gear
If you know what to look for, you can find some great deals on second hand gear. It’s a risky game because you can also have a lot of frustration. Although a kite may look like it’s in great shape, you don’t know what’s underneath the material. If the owner stored the kite in a hot environment, the valves can be compromised and it may be expensive to have the kite fixed.
The year the kite or control bar was manufactured matters. We’ve seen a lot of people find “great deals on craigslist” but the kite or bar is worthless because it is too old. Kiteboarding is a relatively new sport and the technology has improved over the past decade to make the sport safer, easier and more fun. Old kites do not have reliable safety systems, poor aerodynamics and poor performance features. We do not recommend getting any kite or bar older than 6 years old.
If your budget only allows for second hand gear and you’re new to kiteboarding, go through a retail shop. Not only are you supporting your local shop, they will have likely tested the used gear out to make sure it’s in good and working order.
How To Purchase Kiteboarding Gear
If you get the right gear, it will last you for many years. Kiteboarding is one of those sports that once you learn, you can get good fast so you’re going to want gear that will suit you as you get better. When purchasing gear, seek your instructors advice. Your kiteboarding instructor will steer you in the right direction to a setup that will be right for you and will last you a long time.