Kiteboarding

Kiteboarding is an action sport combining aspects of wakeboarding, snowboarding, windsurfing, surfing, paragliding, skateboarding and sailing into one extreme sport. A kiteboarder harnesses the power of the wind with a large controllable power kite to be propelled across the water, land, or snow. On water, a kiteboard, similar to a wakeboard or a small surfboard, with or without footstraps or bindings, is used. Kitesurfing is a style of kiteboarding specific to wave riding, which uses standard surfboards or boards shaped specifically for the purpose. On land, a mountain board or foot steered buggy is used while skis or snowboards can be used in snow.

There are different styles of kiteboarding, including freestyle, freeride, speed, course racing, wakestyle, big air, park, and surfing.

With the development of Internet markets for used stuff, used but reliable kiteboarding equipment has become much less expensive, significantly reducing the barrier to the adoption of the sport. Moreover, the sport is utterly convenient regarding transportation and storage, since the kites are foldable and the boards are smaller than most surf and paddling boards.

Compared to the other sailing sports, kiteboarding is both among the less expensive and the more convenient. It is also unique in that it harvests the wind energy from a much larger atmosphere volume, comparing to sail size.

 

In 2012, the number of kitesurfers was estimated by the ISAF and IKA at 1.5 million persons worldwide. The global market for kite gear sales is worth US $250 million.

 

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