Most kiteboarding schools start instruction on the beach and then move to deep water – a slow, and often dangerous way to learn. Not only are their obstacles to dodge, including rocks, people, and umbrellas, but there's a risk that you could fall or be dragged across hard surfaces. Trust us, that's not very fun. This environment puts yourself in danger, poses a risk to beach goers, and potentially puts the sport at risk in your community. Perhaps even worse than a bruise or scrape, your learning progression is much slower out of the water. This means that you'll spend much more time learning the basics than you will flying around the ocean on your own.
Once you develop kite skills, most schools will then move you out to ocean deep water. This creates several more difficult challenges to overcome. The primary challenge comes from the fact that you can’t stand up. Imagine trying to swim and learn how to fly the kite at the same time while waves are crashing over your head and you're swallowing salt water. It's about as comfortable as it sounds.
Furthermore, deep water can change quickly and it almost always has swell movement – adding additional discomfort and stress that may overwhelm new learners. Heavy waves can also make it extremely difficult to get off the beach and past the surf zone. All this together makes learning to ride the board in deep water quite challenging – hindering your progress and make you learn much slower.
Learning to Kiteboard in Shallow Water
Simply put, shallow water is the best place to learn how to kiteboard safely. Shallow water allows students to stand up and feel comfortable while getting dialed in with kite control and building muscle memory in a safe environment.
Being able to stand up is a key factor in a kite lesson that allows you to maintain more control, get more reps in, and focus on handling your kite without needing to swim. It also allows us to run variety of circuits and different skill drills that will make you progress much faster.
Unlike learning on a beach, shallow water kiteboarding enables you walk with the kite and practice flying it with one hand, without the risk of injury or a face full of sand. If you make a mistake, you'll simply fall in the water, before standing up and trying again. It sounds simple, but it's quite comforting to know that you can't really get hurt, even if you make a mistake.
You also use less energy kiteboarding in shallow water because you don’t have to swim the entire time. This means you'll be able to work longer without needing to take breaks for faster progression and quicker learning. When you do need a break, simply stand up, let the kite sit on the edge of the wind window depowered, and take it easy for a few mins. It couldn't be easier.
With ideal conditions, low risk, and few distractions, you'll experience fast progression and quick learning speeds in shallow water.
Where to Find Shallow Water Kiteboarding Lessons?
For all the reasons above, we were very careful about the location of our kiteboarding school in Stuart, Florida. Today, Next Level Watersports has the only location in central Florida that offers waist-deep, flat water for an ideal learning environment.
All of our beginner lessons start in these waist-deep waters. This allows our students to become comfortable with the kite, build up muscle memory, and get a bunch of repetition in before progressing to advanced skills.
The shallow water also makes the surface much more calm. Where we teach on the bay, there are no swells or big waves. With limited wind chop, the surface of the water is smooth and flat. This makes dialing in the board much easier because you don’t have to navigate through swell or waves – you just ride!
Another major difference is that every NLW kiteboarding lesson comes with boat support. This means that our pro-level coaches are able to stay by your side the entire lesson, while providing instant feedback for rapid progression out on the water. Once you get going, we also utilize BB talkin radios so that we can provide clear and concise coaching and feedback each step of the way.
Finally, at NextLevel Watersports there's also no walking your kite back up the beach. We use our boat to ride the kite back upwind, so you don’t waste energy or move out into deep water.
The NLW FL difference?
Click here to learn more: Next Level Watersports Difference
Why Stuart Florida?
Our lesson center in Stuart Florida boasts some of the best learning conditions that Florida has to offer. We operate in a protected bay with waist-deep sand bars. This allows us to get clean wind in almost all directions for a ideal, safe place to learn – clear of obstacles and other people. It is a much safer environment, especially for kids and people with less athletic abilities. If you fall, the water is soft and forgiving – unlike the beach.
Next Level Watersports is the only kiteboarding school in central Florida to offer lessons in waist deep, flat water with complimentary boat and radio support. Combine with our pro coaching staff, you'll get the most professional, safe and fastest progression kiteboarding lessons in South Florida. Come visit us in Stuart, Florida and learn to kiteboard with our beginner friendly lesson center.
Be sure to follow us on Instagram for some wild photos of our pros and new learners cruising the bay: @NEXTLEVELWATERSPORTS