Start of an adventure

Signing up for a new chapter

In Mai 2019 a friend and fellow student asked if we should sign up for a course offered by the university sport institute together. After going through the large number of courses we agreed to take our first kitesurfing class in Breitenbrunn at Lake Neusiedl in Austria.

Lake Neusiedl is large muddy lake at the eastern border between Austria and Hungary. What’s special about it is that the deepest spot in the entire lake measures only 1,8m. So you can basically stand everywhere. In retrospect a really nice spot to start this new sport.

First experiences

Full of excitement the day before we traveled by train and set up our tent at the kite spot. After a rough camping night, our sympathetic kite instructor from WestCoastKiters awaited us. Due to the wind forecast we started with exercises strait away and saved the theory lessons for later.

We took the schools van to get to a nearby gras field without trees or comparable obstacles. At about 20kts we developed our first maneuvers with a 2m² practice kite.

  • Parking the kite at different positions of the wind window
  • Looping the kite
  • Power dive with stand up movement

Getting wet

After that things were about to get real. We put on our wet suits and harnesses pumped up a 9m² LiquidForce kite and attached a bar with short lines. The instructor took his wave board and kited upwind. Meanwhile we were walking jealously through the muddy lake towards the agreed spot.

Our one-on-one session with the instructor unveiled how much pull a kite induces. Being beginners the intuitive reaction is to pull the bar tight to hold on to something. After the initial kite positioning exercises we got to practice the body drag first without and then with the board.

Even this lowest level of kite experience was exciting for me. I was amazed by the pull of the kite and was keen to ride my first meters at the next session.

Nothing but theory

Unfortunately the wind was down the next day. Therefore, we spent the time to get to know the fundamentals of kite theory and equipment setup and disassembly.

On the next day we were still unlucky and had to cancel the training with 2 out of 3 training days. Still the gathered impressions were so strong, that I was checking the internet for second hand equipment within my student budget.

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