Kitesurfing Kite Styles - Buying Guide

Kitesurfing Kite Styles - Buying Guide

Kitesurfing is made up of numerous categories and we often get asked what is? Freeride, Wakestyle, Freestyle, & wave and what kites should I buy. Well, here at Bay to Ridge we can talk you through each aspect and then custom fit you with the right equipment. This comes from over 17 years of kitesurfing knowledge.

Freeride Kites

So the term freeride is loosely used as it can cover the whole spectrum of kiteboarding. Cabrinha use this term and associate it with a certain kite in their range: the Switchblade.This kite sums up  the freeride market. Easy to use, great wind range, easy to re-launch and just bundles of fun. This is what a freerider is all about, just going out and cruising around enjoying yourself and having the right tools for the job. The Cabrinha Switchblade is the perfect kite for 99% of modern day kiteboarders. Equally versatile and efficient in all conditions, is the flagship kite of the Eleveight range, the RS. Especially with the latest release of the RS V5, Eleveight have revolutionized the term "Freeride" with a brand new construction that sets the bar higher than it's ever been.

Freestyle Kites

Freestyle is all about throwing down the latest and greatest tricks, now this is where it can get complicated when purchasing a kite, as you will find that certain kites in the Cabrinha range will crossover from Freeride to freestyle, this for example works for 2 kites in the arsenal. The Cabrinha FX and the Switchblade. Now with these 2 kites there is a big  difference in the way they fly, which also means they will be different in how they preform freestyle.

Lets look at the Cabrinha Switchblade first, this kite is what we would class as a 5 strut bow/ hybrid design with fusion wing tip shapes and a forward draft, this will also mean it’s a slightly higher aspect ratio than some other kites (Click here to find out about aspect ratios)

Meaning the Switchblade is basically slightly longer and thinner and has 5 struts, therefore giving it a higher aspect like a glider wing, this will give you more float, hang time and a faster forward flying kite. The switchblade is designed more for the Boosted freestyle type rider who goes out looking for big Air, board off multiple rotations. The switchblade is a plug and play kite.

The FX is a 3 Strut Modified C shape Arc with Box wing tip designs, the FX is a kite that requires a bit more input from the rider, the low end of the FX is not on a par with the Switchblade but the FX can be worked to generate low end power. But the FX kite really excels at freestyle whether it is boosted, Kiteloop or unhooked, this is the kite for you in the Cabrinha range.

Surf Kites

So this term is for the hardcore style of rider, normally only associated with Surf style boards and Bindings. This style is all about Power and surf. While surfing, you want your kite to be as invisible as possible. Having a kite which can quickly power and depower are the keys to fluid board control. And there is no better feeling than the moment when your kite ‘drifts’ effortlessly down the line as you absolutely tear apart the wave on your surfboard.  The Kite best suited to this in the Cabrinha Range is the Drifter a 3-strut, moderate aspect hybrid design with 2 bridle setting options.