Published on March 30th, 2008 | by sideshow1
Set your feet free and your mind will follow…
I remember about five years ago riding 16-20m C kites struggling on the lightwind days. Let’s face it, lightwind was a four letter word and we were all doomed to frustration by riding medium to high wind twin tips with huge kites. My friend Daryl Drown advised me to get a skimboard so I could start enjoying those light conditions. After all, I live and ride in a place that is well known for it’s lack of wind. So I took his advise and never looked back. The skimboard first opened my my eyes to riding two kite sizes smaller than others on the water. What a difference on those hot summer days! I experimented with footstraps, fins, wax, pads, etc. to find the best overall configuration for the skimmer, but it came full circle back to the purity of the shape – no fins, no footstraps… set your feet free.
Skimboards led to wakeskates and to surfboards then back to skimboards; next came aerials, olies, grabs, handle passes, and shovits. With no foot straps, I had allowed my creativity to take over… my mind was free. The beauty of riding any board without straps is the freedom that comes with it. Each session is different – it can be an easy going relax ride or a quest to come off the water with a new trick under my belt.
Whether it’s a wakeskate, skimboard, and/or surfboard; or waves, chop, and/or glassy flats, riding strapless transcends it all and un-straps your feet to push kitesurfing into a limitless number directions. Want to freshen your outlook on kitesurfing? Get on the water, lose the straps, set your feet free and your mind will follow.