Not every post needs to be heavy drama and intensity. Today we bring you the dynamics of Kiteboarding from a new student. I signed up for six hours of training at Kitepuertorico.com. It costs a pretty penny but includes experienced instructors. Mine, Ryan, has over nine years of experience and the calm demeanor of a professional instructor. Patient, clear and knowledgable, he teaches exactly what you need to know in the right order. This is the sign of an experienced instructor. If you listen carefully and repeat what he says as he shows you, your body and muscle memory learn as one unit. Classical Yoga taught me this principle as well as 20 years of teaching thousands of hours of curricula.
Harness and Rigging
First you learn how to don the equipment and unroll your kite. There is a harness with a “Chicken Strap,” and other accoutrement including the ever masculine “Donkey Dick.” Not sure how he teaches women this apparatus, but that is not my gig right. Regardless, once you are “snapped-in,” you learn how to “punch out,” pulling what I call the “Kill Switch,” a big red detaching clip. All the equipment is designed to be hyper-simple, functional and light. Remember at most time you will be using it in the saltwater of the ocean the most unforgiving of environs.
Next you learn how to unroll the lines. Similar to sailing you cannot cross them (like Ghostbusters?) and you need to ensure your lead line is on the far right when facing the kite on the sand. This also lines up with the “bar,” which has a “red, right side while rigging” configuration. Once lined-up you can have an assist with launch and a thumbs-up gesture. Key things with kiting are the wind windows. This is where the kite can gather wind based upon conditions. Unlike traditional wind sports, you describe the wind from the direction it leads: “Onshore” toward shore, “Offshore,” away from shore, “Side” toward a side. The best for our purposes are “Side on,” for “Side Onshore.”
The window itself comprises an area like a clock or angle of attack indicator in a plane. Another great article for wind physics can be found in Surfer Today. Regardless of dynamics, the simple point is this: Launch the kite from the ground with an assist or when it is facing downward with the leading edge toward the sand. You pull on the right or left line and as the kite gathers wind, you then release the bar all the way out as it starts to lose air. You can feel this in your harness.
DO NOT CHOKE-UP ON THE BAR; RELEASE THE BAR!
The key thing a with all wind sports, do not choke-up on the bar, keep it outward and relaxed. Let the kite pull you through the harness; turn it with the bar by pulling or releasing on a side, not by steering! I will be repeating this to myself regularly. Always release the bar. Release the bar. If in trouble, release the bar. Did I mention release the bar?
Finally as you get the kite aloft, guide it through the power zone and at the edges. Kite control is the key at this point. On day one the wind shifted significantly, hence I feel good about my ability to control the kite on land. Today we do some water drills with body dragging.
Before I finished I would like to share how this affects the waking dream. Kiting is like navigating the dream. You get to choose where in the wind window you want to operate. Historically I often chose the power zone, strong, hard peaks and valleys. In fact, every year I powered higher and higher up the curve. Now I choose a more gradual and fun ride. I catch the currents I choose best. This will gracefully carry me through my life.
Many do n0t realize this, but the path of your life generally follows a channel, or “vasana,” which means “track” in Sanskrit. These reinforced paths throughout you or your families lineage over thousands of years build inertia. You can release that inertia by not only stopping travel on that path by relaxing, but by also letting more sattvic currents carry you skyward. More about “Sattva” or truth/equilibrium later. Your general trajectory can sometimes be changed depending upon life path. Only you can really know this by study, training, and practice.
I recommend finding your wind window, your parameters, and your capabilities by learning and trying many things both structured and unstructured. However, whatever methods you choose, do them deliberately and progressively beginning with only one variable at a time. In other words, don’t change relationship, location, vocation and occupation all at once. Slowly master one then progress to multiple variables. The good news is that computers are making the math part more automatic, so no one need learn Calculus if they do not want to.
In fact, your mind performs complex mathematics every time you look at something. Even the blind have their bodies use physics when walking, standing, or reaching. As do the inner ear mechanics. My goal has always been to understand enough to practice and systematize, then enough to teach.
To those who will one day learn from me:
We are all learning at all times. See how even, I, with all of my experience subordinate to my instructor Ryan who shows mastery. Teaching is a serious skill that must be supported by practical capability. Also remember, that Michael Jordan was nowhere near the best coach. The best teachers are masters of the craft and of showing it to others.
Material Cause, Instrumental Cause, Efficient Cause
- You are the efficient cause of your life, the driver.
- Your skills and tools are the instrumental causes.
- The wind windows are the material causes.
The Waking Dream
Learn yourself first, your talents, hopes, and fears.
Second, learn tools to capitalize on your talents to achieve your hopes and dreams while mitigating or integrating your fears.
Finally, find your wind windows as your life unfolds.
I have spend since I was thirteen years old trying to navigate this dream. It was then that I took LSD and discovered that reality is a liquid not a solid. It took me many years to learn what was fixed and mutable in myself, my skills, and the world around me. Then I had to train to extend or decrease any of the dynamics to capitalize on the static. Remember even the so called fixed aspects of your life path change based upon the current and streams around you. Anyone can can achieve his or her dreams.