The first time I saw someone jump a kiteboard I knew it was the sport for me. And the first time I jumped was like riding a bike; or should I say driving a Flintstones car? The board flew off my feet and I pedalled the air at a million miles an hour. The harder I pedalled the higher I flew. That’s how my subconscious was convinced it worked at least. With each jump, I pedalled harder and flew higher. By jump attempt number twenty I was getting twenty feet of air, and pedalling the air so fast I could have made butter.
My son Kai has inherited my Flintstone car pedalling ability. His love of jumping has fueled that endless tree watching that every kiteboarder knows; hoping for that first sign of wind.
“I really want to go kiting,” has become a daily refrain. Following his progress has me flashing back to my progression in the air, and has rekindled my interest in jumping. I’m not sure how long I’ll be the biggest jumper in the family, but I’ll claim that title for today, and work hard to maintain it tomorrow.
This issue, if it had an unofficial theme, is all about jumping. The Kitesurfing Magazine test team takes a look at the best jumping kites on page 82. Five-time world champion Aaron Hadlow shares his thoughts on the progression of kitesurfing, and today’s resurgence of big air. And Reider Decker shares a few tips to learning the Mario jump (when I work on that one, I’ll need to stop pedalling when I land on the board).
See you at the beach. The next jump awaits.
If you don’t read this caption you might think this is John Bryja, that’s OK with him… but it’s James Ropner. Richard Hallman photo