2015 National Freestyle Championships

Thanks to Antoine at NSWKBA this just came by my inbox! This will be a really good event for sure and it’s right on our Sydney doorstep!! Kurnell is going to be a great spot for the comp, great wind, lots of space to sit and watch from and the local hospitality will be legendary! This comp is open to anyone that can jump and it looks like there will be a comp specifically for people like you and me that aren’t doing knee defying 200ft megaloops! It’s going to be a blast and I hope I can make it down there to watch and maybe do a report. Check out the details below and shoot any questions you have in the comments below..

Kiteboarding Australia and Kiteboarding NSW presents:

2015 NATIONAL FREESTYLE CHAMPIONSHIPS

for all Intermediate to Advanced riders.

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It is on our doorstep at Kurnell Beach so we expect a large turnout of NSW kiters to enter this event and hopefully take home the TOP Awards and some UP & COMING Awards.

Entries from other States are on the rise, so come on SYDNEY – WE WANT YOU! – ENTER NOW! The event will be held over 4 days at Kurnell beach from MARCH 12 -15 with predicted winds around 15-20 knots but we recommend you bring kites of all sizes, as that time of year can bring some howling wind mixed with breezes.

Note- that the Juniors are broken up into Under 16 and Under 18, so here is a great chance for the New Comers to take home an Award and/or a great Prize!

Exult Kitewear are designing the Event Tee which is going to be a sort after item which each entrant will receive on arrival. Bravo Pumps are on board with some powered pumps and other items to give away and DEMO on the beach Mystic have given us some harnesses and the BIG KITE BRANDS are all there to lend support. Kitemag will be covering the event, so you may end up as an article in the NEXT MAG!

Last year we saw Newcomers pick up sponsorship deals – this could be YOU this year! ALL WELCOME – The “2015 NATIONAL KITEBOARDING CHAMPION” could be YOU!

All Divisions OPEN to: Australian Citizens and Permanent Residents
Entry Fee: $90 includes a quality TEE ! Entry Fee also Includes: Food BBQ Sizzle / Drinks / Water / No Wind Activities / Access all Areas etc Presentation Sunday 4pm – Awards and Prizes (Extra award/prizes for Encouragement and Expression riders.)
Divisions: Junior – 16 & Under as of 1st JulyYouth – 18 & Under as of 1st July Open Mens – Any age Open Womens – Any age Master – 35 & Over as of 1st July Allstar Event – Non Citizen Expression Session. (Fun Extra Event if Wind and Time permit!)

Yes this is a 4 man Double Elimination round robin, you don’t get knocked out in first round! Heat Time: TBA – depending on wind. Example: 20 min session – Continuous Start, wind dependant. We have some of the finest Judges to score you at this event – Intermediates are most welcome.

Thanks to our FANTASTIC SPONSORS: OZONE / CABRINHA / NORTH / BEST / EXULT Kitewear / Bravo Pumps / Mystic and our favourite Mag ; KITEMAG . Also a big thanks to KITEPOWER who are also sponsoring the event with lots of prizes and help!

Register and pay here: https://www.registernow.com.au/secure/Register.aspx?E=15376


Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/kiteboardnationals LIKE IT !

Kitechicks Eleven Report

The weekend of the 22nd of March saw the eleventh KiteChicks event descend on the shores of Culburra located on the outside of Jervis Bay in NSW.  25 girls and 7 instructors and coaches attended the latest incarnation of the KiteChicks training camps that are run by volunteers, passionate about kitesurfing to help introduce women into the sport and aid in bringing like minded girls together. The camps cater for all levels from complete beginners to confident kiters looking to improve and hone their skills.

Kitesurfing.com.au’s Pete was proud to be asked to head down as a coach again this time around and once again, this event has been a cracker!

Culburra is a near perfect location for running this type of event,

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There is almost enough of everything to suit every skill level, there are waves and sea for the more advanced girls, flat shallow water for teaching and when the water levels are right a large lake that can cater for all sorts of riding and teaching. Couple this with perfect beaches, good coffee shops and a brilliant pad for everyone to crash in you can’t really go wrong. There is also a raft of other activities that can be had close by.

The event this year has been taken over by Maja, new to organising kitechicks but not new to attending she had put a lot of work into organising everything and it paid off, this had to be the most relaxed and enjoyable kitechicks I’ve been involved in.

Saturday

Saturday morning started with a mad panic of surfing, most of the girls attending this year have a passion for surfing I’d not seen before on this scale. Culburra has a few sneaky little surf breaks around. Reasonable small waves were had before breakfast and with a 9am deadline for Yoga the surf cleared out for the first kitechicks yoga session. Instructors and students alike got all bendy on the grass (and bitten by sand flies)

Introductions and formalities of a team event came next with Maja introducing everyone and the instructors to their groups. With a changeable forecast for wind and a real requirement to keep people sane the girls split up into groups for other activities like SUP’ing and surfing. Thanks to WindSurfNSnow Watersports we had the use of 3 SUP’s that proved fantastic entertainment on the flat water of the river.

A small building Nor-East breeze at about 1pm caused a sudden flurry of activity with girls and instructors dashing for kites. Mel made the most of it with a brief 15 minute session on the flat protected waters of the river before a thunderstorm and rain really screwed things up by killing all the wind! Things were looking pretty bleak for Saturday from this point but a small semi-forecast southerly came through in the mid arvo that once again got everyone moving and heading down to various locations to commence the kiting.

I took my group (the wave and surfboard riding girls) out to the main beach opposite the lagoon to check it out. There was enough wind to kite but its a little cross-off. I explained and pointed out the obvious dangers to the girls who were keen to get stuck into it. Things didn’t go so well with the wind, currents and waves proving a little too hard (I had a go and it really was a struggle) so we moved into the almost empty and VERY murky lagoon to practice a few things on twintips that the girls wanted to learn. Whilst this was going on there were trainer kites and girls getting there first feel for flying kites! Smiles everywhere! The beach at the lagoon offers an incredibly large area for teaching!

This fun continued until the light ran out. This got everyone back to the accommodation for a well deserved shower and onto dinner. I have to hand to the organisation here, with everyone chipping into helping out and a well laid food plan we were served up a real treat. I’m not sure if there are any photos but with super healthy fish and other healthy bits my tummy hasn’t seen in a long time everyone was getting stuck in!

Memories fade after dinner, I remember rum, I remember tequila, I remember a man in a bikini and playing ping pong with a SUP paddle! Happy days.

Sunday

A weary start for many on Sunday and a coffee run is always welcome. The weather is great and there is a real buzz of excitement in the house. This unfortunately comes to an end after the 9am Yoga as the house needs cleaning, but not before a killer breakfast! With everyone chipping into cleaning up the house it doesn’t take long and we are out at lunch. The wind forecast is rubbish which is a shame but everyone is keen to make the most of the weekend away and heads back to the beach for a surf. I’ve never seen so many women in the surf before and after speaking to a local, neither have they!

Supping and great warm waves are being had all round, for those that don’t surf great conversation and laughs on the beach.

With this thought of a long drive home many people started to pack their cars and head home. This turned out to be a small mistake! Even tho a small Nor-Easter had been building all day at 3pm the remainder of the people decided that was time to pack up. I decided to make the call tho – It’s ON! So whilst people are packing up, I’m pumping up! with a mostly sceptical response I pump up the new 2014 12m Cabrinha Siren (yes its PINK!) and I grab the surfboard. Oh it’s ON! After about 15mins of smashing back and forth and catching waves I look back to the shore to see a flurry of activity and kites getting pumped up!

With 2 of my 3 girls still remaining its back to coaching for me :) I lend the 12m to Tatiana who heads out to battle her fears after a few years out of the surf to see her slip back into a familiar old skool kiting style that is sadly missing in todays kiting. Maja heads out on her new North 5’10” whip. – a seriously good surfboard for kiting! – and start practicing her carves to toeside. With a good stiff breeze that would have seen me put up a 9m the rest soon followed and great wind was had until about 5pm at which point we had to call it a day and head back to Sydney! What a finish!

Overall, this has been the most enjoyable kitechicks I’ve attended, a real pleasure to help out! remembering this event is run by volunteers just makes it all the more special. It’s also great to see help from within the industry to back it. NSWKBA, WindSurfNSnow, Alliance GearKitepower, Balance Water to name the ones I can remember. The tireless efforts of Maja, Lise and Lauren in organising everything. Giovani Genovali for being the kitelauncher and photographer for the weekend (he thought it was a hard job), All the coaches and instructors and everyone who attended and help make it possible.

More pictures to follow when we get them.

New kite boarding location guide for Sydney and beyond

Hi All,

This will probably be a little controversial but to keep up a good solid base of information about kite surfing in Sydney and NSW we’ve made a new locations guide google map! This should end up being a good reference to everyone and whilst it will never be complete and may ruffle a few feathers we believe its in everyone’s best interest to highlight the local dangers at some of these spots. (rocks, dangerous currents, power lines etc)

The guide is aimed at visitors to Sydney, learners and people looking to progress their skills and try out new spots. We’ll also post up some downwinder routes for the more macho kiter.

Some of this info is out in the web already but i doubt its being maintained and added to. So have fun and head on over to the new page!

[button color=”green” size=”medium” link=”http://www.kitesurfing.com.au/kite-boarding-locations-in-sydney/” ]Take me to the maps..[/button]

or click here if the button isn’t showing :)

2014 Kite surfing National Championships

Hey all.

A quick shout out for the new AK National Championships being held down at the Royal Brighton Yacht Club and sponsored by Cabrinha!

Below is the flier, but for more info I’d suggest checking out www.aksa.com.au

It’s also a good time to get your AK membership back up to date and get the all important 3rd party insurance!

ARTICLE : Who has the right of way when Kite Boarding? Part 1.

This article is aimed to help educate everyone (including myself) about on the water etiquette and the right of way when kite surfing / kite boarding. As we are Northern Beaches focused and constantly have issues at a few of our common spots I thought I’d use these as examples.

For reference I suggest reading this post on Seabreeze  ‘Right of Way Rules’ as it has some good info and adopts the ‘common sense’ approach that I will hope to elaborate on here. Ok, lets get some fundamentals out the way. Also the CLEAR system by NSWKBA / AKA should be adopted at all times.

Port & Starboard

Hmm, two slippery nautical terms for left and right. If you don’t know, PORT is LEFT and RED and STARBOARD is GREEN and RIGHT. But what does that actually mean when we are on the water. To be honest, I think the terms are almost irrelevant to kite surfing unless you are RACING. These guys know the rules, they have to. They’re are all trying to get to a common point as fast as possible at the same time (an upwind mark) and without very clear rules it would be carnage.

So how do we apply the basis of Port and Starboard to our general kiting so that it helps us? 

Let’s look at what PORT and STARBOARD technically means. In theory if you are on STARBOARD tack you have the right of way over a boat on PORT. YEAH,, but how do I know on a kite if I’m on Port or Starboard? In a boat its easy, if you are sailing in a boat and the SAIL is the left hand side of the boat you are on STARBOARD tack, if its on the right you are on PORT tack. OR you could say that if the wind is falling onto the STARBOARD side of the vessel (board) you are on STARBOARD tack, likewise if the wind is hitting the PORT (left) side of the board you are on PORT tack. Now STARBOARD should have right of way but this sometimes fails in kiting because of all the differences to us and boats. I’ve heard LOTS of different explanations of how to work out PORT and STARBOARD on a kite, a certain foot forward, holding the bar with a certain hand etc etc. But its messy. What if I’m riding toeside, or backwards (blind) or I’m body dragging and don’t have a board!

Look at the following diagram and see where this does and doesn’t work. 

In this diagram both kiters are heading directly at each other, if they keep going its going to be a mess. Working out the boards is easy but the kites are the issue here they can’t occupy the same space easily so someone HAS to do something. This is quite common in the ‘learner’ spots where a group of people will go back and forth ‘mowing’ the lawn. So who is going to do what? In theory the kite on PORT would need to take avoiding action, this would mean turning AWAY from the wind. By doing this you will end up in the much more common situation below where things start to become simpler.

OK, so this is what you are more likely to see when kiting: One rider slightly more upwind than the other rider, by this we mean that ONE of you is closer to that big invisible arrow where the wind is coming FROM. One rider, in our case here the PORT tack rider (BTW, when you hear the term ‘tack’ it just means the current direction you are heading, when you change direction and cross through the wind you have ‘tacked’ or ‘gybed’ depending which way you crossed through the wind and you are now on a new ‘tack’) MUST lower his/her kite and should keep it steady whilst the UPWIND rider must give him room for his kite by raising his kite higher in the sky and keep it steady.

In some cases you will have a better rider who is able to ride better upwind that another rider, this means that the two approaching kiters are heading at different angles and from a distance a rider may be downwind 100m away but at 50m he could be upwind. If he intends to cross you he will RAISE his kite higher in the sky as a sign that this is his intention. (FYI, trying to shout at another kiter on the water is pretty pointless, you won’t likely be heard!)

OK, so what about this then?

In this example we are all doing the same thing BUT the PORT tack rider is more UPWIND that the starboard tack rider. The dotted line shows what the PORT tack rider would have to go through to ‘avoid’ the STARBOARD tack  rider thats pretty silly so as always the UPWIND rider must RAISE his kite and the DOWNWIND rider should LOWER his kite and pass DOWNWIND of the PORT rider. Pretty simple stuff really.

Ooh, and as a side note. If you are EVER considering playing the ‘I have right of way on starboard’ or the ‘power gives way to sail’ on a boat of ANY description then you should go away and re-assess your life on this planet. And don’t forget your first obligation as a skipper of a vessel under Waterways regulations (YES, you are a “skipper” and your kiteboard is designated as a “vessel) –that obligation is to avoid a collision at all costs. Having right of way and not avoiding a collision when you could will not allow you to escape any liabilities if you end up at the mercy of the Water Police

It’s pretty simple, we are small, they are HUGE! UNLESS you are in a position where you simply cannot do anything else to avoid the other craft (downed kite, broken leg etc etc) then simply go behind them or turn and go the other way until it’s safe to proceed. Remember, no-one can hear you shouting and ‘they’ may not have seen you but you should have seen them! This brings us nicely onto the next big issue.

Observation & Awareness

When we are out on the water we have a responsibility to be aware of our surroundings, unlike driving a car on a freeway people are not all traveling in the same direction, you can’t just look ahead and we certainly don’t have mirrors to look behind us.

It’s a common problem in any sport or activity, when the brain is concentrating so hard on learning a new activity we can only focus on one thing and in essence we get tunnel vision. I’ve ridden up underneath someone whilst coaching so close that I could physically touch them and they had no idea that I was there even though I was shouting at them from a foot away. This to me shows that that person was solely occupied in going forward and unaware of anything else beyond the bar.

MAKE A MENTAL NOTE BEFORE YOU GO OUT TO LOOK AROUND AND TAKE THE VIEW IN EVERY 10-15 SECONDS WHILST RIDING.

It doesn’t take long, we’re not trying to read the serial numbers on peoples kites, you should be aware of who is behind you, in front of you, downwind of you and up wind of you at all times. it’s a glance, a check, am I safe? Is anyone else going to hit me? Am I safe to do a trick? (That’s another story)

Heading out and Heading in.

Here is another interesting point that I’ve heard different versions of over time. Does the person leaving the beach always have right of way over a rider coming in? This one falls into the common sense basket. For this I’ll use an example.

In this example of our own lovely Fishermans Beach, I’ve highlighted the great big rocks that stick out and have a tendency to munch kites, boards and feet. I’ve stuck some boards on it for an example. The rider trying to leave that very tight spot HAS to make it above the long rock out from the beach but below the flat rock section slightly further out all whilst not tripping up on the small one in the middle, there isn’t much wind in that little section of water so IF the rider coming in were to insist that the rider coming out lowers his kite (he might have to be working it to get enough power to get out) then the rider trying to leave the beach is probably going to get pinned on the rock.

So what does this mean? COMMON SENSE must prevail, the rider coming in (unless shark bite prevails) should use his new found OBSERVATION skills before he comes in to check that no-one else is just launching before he commits to riding into the beach, have a look back and tack back if clear to allow time for that person to get off the beach.

As another example let’s use Long Reef, we’ve got heaps of room at Longy, so who has the right of way? The guy riding in or the guy riding out? Well, if you are riding in, AND you see someone trying to set off why would you just ride at him? Chances are that the rider coming out will loose a bit of ground downwind starting off but with your new OBSERVATION skills you saw him way before you got close enough for it to be an issue, you could just stay upwind a little or not insist on landing exactly where you launched from. 30m upwind or downwind would probably be fine.

So what if you are about to launch and you see someone heading for you? Did you have a look before you walked into the water to see if anyone was coming in? Maybe a quick look out from where you are about to launch from is a good idea? Lets use our Fishermans example again:

In this example the rider coming in is already committed, maybe he saw the guy standing at the waters edge and maybe he didn’t, there isn’t a lot of room here so what’s the most sensible thing to do? (I really hope you are starting to get this). Are you going to just blindly head out with no speed, and get in the way of the guy coming in? Are you going to launch and CLAIM the ‘I’m leaving the beach, I have right of way’ card? Again, common sense is your guide, along with avoiding a collision at all costs.

In future parts we’ll talk about the surf! wave riding, tricks and jumping.

And just as a quick closing note whilst I think about it,

Your right of way as a kiter on the beach.

This one is really simple. When you are on the beach YOU HAVE NO RIGHT OF WAY! Nothing, not even an inch. This applies to certainly every beach in Australia EVEN if there is a designated kite launch zone. Members of the public and other beach users have the right of way, period! Even if you were there first.

Kite safe! watch out for part 2.

NSWKBA Season Opener 2013 – Northern Beaches Style

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Hi All,

The great guys over at NSWKBA.com.au are hosting the 2013 North Side season opener at Narrabeen on Oct 13th. Looks like there will be a Big Air Comp, Demo kites, Clinics and more. There is – as always – a BBQ, music and bar. Hosted at the Narrabeen Surf club this event should be great! If it’s like last year we had cranking surf and brilliant wind. Good on ya NSWKBA.

kitesurfing.com.au will be in attendance to help raise profile for the site and take some photos etc. Hopefully Pete is all fixed up and can get out for the big air comp!

Be there or be the odd one out!

Pete

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KITE LOCATIONS IN SYDNEY

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If you are new to Sydney or thinking about travelling here for a kitesurfing holiday or for work then you will probably want to know where you can and more importantly can’t kitesurf.

Thankfully the guys over at NSWKBA have a reasonably comprehensive list of locations that are suitable for all levels. There is a lot of information to absorb so have a good look around.

It’s not a totally comprehensive list but has the majority of safe places that won’t get you into trouble. Click one of the buttons below to take you to the locations pages.

We will also post up some of our own location info with more details about our spots local to us in the future.

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ARCHIVE : NSWKBA STATE TITLES 2005

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In the Archives here we have some old NSWKBA Event action. Can’t find any details about it more than the below. I’m not sure if there was any wind at this event as there seems to be no kiting pictures!

2005 NSWKBA

State Titles
Flatwater Event
Wallis Lake
Forster, NSW

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