When it comes to kiteboarding lessons, there are 4 options:
1. try to teach yourself,
2. get lessons from a buddy,
3. get a lesson from some random dude,
4. or find a Certified professional kiteboarding instructor.
Unfortunately the first three options are terrible choices, and could be risking your health and safety, and maybe even your life.
If you haven’t heard already, Kiteboarding is an Extreme sport, and lessons with a professional instructor are necessary for a safety entry into this sport.
This has been the wisdom that has saved our sport from early extinction, and has allowed us to grow our community and sport to its current level.
Why is kiteboarding so Extreme?
Kiteboarding is an extreme sport because the kite system can generate huge amounts of power, and because the kite acts like a wing it is a form of flying. Kite dynamics generate extreme bursts of power can that can easily lift a person off the ground, to dangerous heights, and/or propel them at deadly speeds. Unless continuously controlled the power can sometimes get the participant and bystanders into deadly situations. New participants need to learn to control the power by learning complete operation skills, power management techniques, proper use of the safety systems, and correct procedures.
Kiteboarding is a complex and technical sport, that can appear deceptively easy.
Many people get a false sense of security because kiteboarding appears so simple but in fact subtle mistakes can have very severe consequences.
Why not learn from or teach friends?
Most people will tell you that “friends don’t teach friends to kiteboard”, this is because kiteboarding is risky to people and gear, it can be scary, and it can be frustrating. If you teach a friend you not only risk their lives, but also your own gear could get trashed, and you are also responsible for damage they cause to other people. Plus they might get frustrated and scared and it will strain your relationship. So for sure you never want to teach your spouse or partner.
Why not learn from some random dude?
What are your instructors’ qualifications? Who taught them, what makes them qualified to teach you a risky and complex sport. Did they ever receive training or did they just make stuff up? Did they teach themselves, or did they learn last week?
When you learn from some random dude, you are rolling the dice with your life, because some techniques are ticking time bombs, waiting to explode. There are many examples of bad techniques and risky methods that are being passed along every day. Unfortunately a new kiteboarder does not know enough to see if the person is giving them good information or bad. So the person teaching you has the power to set you on a path of success or ultimate failure. Sadly more and more people think that they can teach, when in fact their knowledge is at best limited or worse flawed to the point of being dangerous.
Why learn for a qualified Professional?
When you learn from a qualified professional instructor you have at least the confidence of knowing that they have completed a known training program that is checked and verified by their trainers and their network. The information they pass along is standardized, and follows a set sequence. They use a check-list of tried and tested techniques and training methods. Their structured lessons are designed to pass along the vital information, and help the student to acquire the essential skills needed to safely participate in the sport.
The choice is clear:
As far as safety is concerned it is a clear choice, only a Certified professional instructor can offer that level of confidence and safety.
So why risk anything else? The lessons from a professional instructor are not the cheapest option. And short-term, learning from your buddy or some dude may save you a few bucks, but you may be risking your life. So if you value your time, if you value your health, your safety, and your life, then you should invest in professional lessons. That way you are taking a responsible approach to learning this extreme sport. And you are putting a higher value on yourself.