By Alex Brown
Posted Monday 7th July
Bow kites, SLE kites and hybrid kites; I have no idea why they are all called different things; but one thing is for sure, these are the shit for landboarding. If you have considered flying inflatable kites on the land, here is a quick run over for you, that should clear a few things up.
I rode C kites on land just under 2 years ago. After flying a bow for the first time, when SQ341902874902314509328 (aka Simon Clark, Best Marketing Director) came to visit me before I signed with Best, it was an obvious choice to leave my C kites for the water and use the advantages that a bow kite offered for landboarding. So first things first, what is a C kite and what is a bow kite? A C shape kite is the classic kite surf kite shape, look side on and it will look like the letter "C" turned onto its side. These kites were the original design of inflatable kites that have been used for around the past 10 years. The bow kite is a new design, which is a more flattened out C kite. These have a new bar system giving 50-100% more depower than the previous V kite shape design. These are still inflatable and came in the same sizes, but offer more depower and control for beginners and increased light and practicality for advanced riders.
So why use a bow kite on the land ... the main selling point for using a bow kite for landboarding is the amount of depower you can get from your kite. This increases the wind range you can use your kites in on land and allows you to stop the kite's power if you're getting overpowered. Best Kiteboarding built the first land-specific bow kite, the Bularoo, which has some key features making it very popular for land use. The leading edge (this is the inflatable part of the kite) has a series of added rubber protection pads to protect your inflatable edge from popping when you crash it on the land. It also helps to protect the kite from self launching on sand and snow. This maximizes the age of your kite and saves you those repair bills!