The Kite Boards: Parts and characteristics of a Twin Tip

The kite board is the connection between kite surfer and water surface. lt transmits the kite’s power into riding.

We have 2 main Board types

  • Bidirectional / Twin Tips: Symmetrical boards that can be ridden the same in both directions.
  • Directionals Boards: Boards with a shaped tail and front, rideable only one direction.

Bidirectional Board  / Twin Tip

Bidorectional Boards are the most commun kite boards.

A Bidirectional Board, called also Twin Tip,  is a board that can be ridden the same into both directions.

Parts of a bidirectional board

  • Nose/Tip/Front: Front part of the board in riding direction.
  • Rail: Long edges of the board.
  • Straps: Enable the feet to be attached to the board.
  • Pads: Cushions with anti-slip- surface.
  • Grab handle: Used to grab and hold the board.
  • Inserts: integrated into the board to attach pads, straps, handle using
    screws.
  • Fins: Provide stability while riding.
  • Fin Screws: Fix the fins to the board.
  • Tail/Back: Board’s back part in riding direction.
  • Deck: Upper part of the board
  • Bottom: Bottom part of the board

Twin Tip board’s characteristics

A board’s performance and characteristics are determined by its shape and outline.

Board Length

  • Long boards: Good for beginners (forgiving) and low wind (early planing), controllable in high riding speeds.
  • Short boards: Good for strong winds, agile, loose.

Board Width

  • Wide boards: Early planning, light wind.
  • Narrow boards: Controllable in chop and high wind speeds

Board Thickness

  • Thin boards: Direct, light weight, specific flex zones.
  • Thick boards: Stable, more buoyancy.

Rocker

Describes how much a board is bent when looking from its side.

Big rocker:

  • + Comfortable riding, board catches less during maneuvers, easier controllable in chop and strong winds.
  • – Slower and therefore worse planing capabilities.

Little rocker:

  • + Fast, precise edge control for popping (especially in flat water).
  • – Boards rails are catching easier, more challenging to ride

Flex

Boards stiffnes, resulting in comfortable riding and forgivingness during maneuvers.

  • + More flex: More comfort for riding and landing (chop is absorbed by the board).
  • – Too much flex: Board is not direct and too soft to pop efficiently.

Stiff boards are for hHeavier riders, lots of power, freestylers.

Soft boards are for Light weight riders, light wind, freeriders.

NOTE:

  • When a board is too stiff it will feel uncomfortable in choppy conditions.
  • Flex tips: Enhance edge control, riding comfort and pop ability.

Concave

Describes a board’s bottom’s arch looking from rail to rail.

  • + increases the board’s stability, better edge control, easier edging, more upwind ability at the same length (early planing)
  • – Less flex, stiffer, harder to turn, can increase catching characteristics.

Shape/Outline

Describes the outline of the board. if

Round (convex): 

  • + Easier to turn. Wide tips: Early planning, good
  • – Less edge control for take off. for popping (take off)

Straight:

  • + Good edge control for take off Narrow tips: Great control in
  • – Harder to turn strong wind, good carving abilities.

Board Leash

A leash is a constant connection between a kitesurfer and his board, speeding up the restarting process after a crash.

  • Surfboard leash: Like used for surfing. t,2m – 3m long, attached using Velcro to one’s harness or foot.
  • Roll leash: During a crash the leash rolls out automatically and will not create tension before rolling up slowly.

IMPORTANT:

Using a leash is HIGHLY dangerous:

  • Board can act like a bullet and hurtyou seriously!
  • Equipment might get tangled _and impaired!

Stance

The Stance is the way how to stand on the board.

The angle and the distance between your feet on the board  is adjustable.

Angle of the straps (Duckstance)

  • Big angle: Good for cruising and freeriding, helps when going upwind (you can point your front foot better upwind).
  • Small angle: Good edge control (heel can put pressure on the edge well), which is good for New School tricks.

Position setup on the board (middle vs side)

  • Middle: Good control for riding, big feet.
  • Heelside: Good edging, small feet.

NOTE: Neither your pads, nor your feet should catch water.

Straps Set Up

  • Possibilities: Different screwing position for the width,
    Velcro for size.
  • Width and size can be adjusted to one’s preferences and style. l\/lostly, rather tight for Newschool freestyle and more loose for Airstyle.

Bindings

Nowadays wakeboarding has a huge influence on Newschool freestyle.  Therefore bindings have become very popular for this powerful and fast discipline with its aggressive, fast, loaded jumps.

Advantages of Bindings:

More precise positioning of the feet on the board enabling higher speeds in manoeuvres, more board control and better landings. For
many a big style factor, good suspension for hard landings.

Disadvantages of Binding:

Limited ability to move (especially in emergency situations) less upwind performance, extra stress for joints (forced into uncomfortable positions) heavier than straps.

ATTENTION: Slipping out of one binding only is VERY risky and may result in serious injuwl

Frequently Asked Questions on Bindings
  1. Can I attach bindings to any board? Generally yes, however most brands offer special boards for bindings. They have extra strong inserts and are wider than regular boards.
  2. Can I swim with bindings? Yes you can, even though a bit limited.
  3. Can I get out of the bindings in an emergency situation? In crashes, your feet will slide out of the bindings quite easily. Specific, well tested release systems imported from wakeboarding help you to do so.
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