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4981Re: [ksurfschool] A dangerous sport ???

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  • George Sarris
    Sep 5, 2004
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      I agree with you in that the "extreme" or "dangerous"
      depiction of kiteboarding should be dropped. I kite
      in conditions of 15-20 kts and it is far from extreme.
      Above 20 kts such as yesterday here on the west coast
      of Florida and I resort to windsurfing where I have
      more experience and feel comfortable up to 35 kts. As
      with any sport, one can take it to the extreme and
      that's what gets media attention. Just look at the
      newscasters/storm chasers out on the southeast coast
      of Florida in the height of hurricane Frances. They
      even admit that they are stupid for being out there.
      Sensationalism sells and there is certainly more
      sensationalism than ever before with this hurricane.

      Also, one thing you have brought up in the past is
      that the kites need to have 90-100% depower
      capability. I don't know of any LEI kite that has
      that feature. The manufacturers need to somehow
      develop this capability.

      --- Hung Vu <hungvu2000@...> wrote:

      > In the past, almost everyone considered kiting as a
      > dangerous sport
      > (probably due to not sufficient data nor awareness)
      > Similarly, We did the same on
      > http://kitesurfingschool.org and paid
      > quite a bit of attention on safety.
      > The combined effort of many kiters and manufacturers
      > seems pay off
      > nicely as most kiters and manufacturers is now aware
      > of the safety
      > issues of kiting and works on improving the safety
      > of the sport.
      > While labeling kiting as a "dangerous sport" helps
      > kiters to be aware of
      > the safety issues, it also create an "extreme",
      > "rebellious" image of
      > the sport. This "extreme", "rebellious" image of
      > the sport may have
      > been used by some local authority as an argument to
      > ban kiting at some
      > locations.
      > The reality is that kiting can be a very safe sport
      > compared to the
      > others. Locally, We have been kiting around here
      > since 1998 and until
      > now haven't had a single serious accidents compare
      > to snowboarding which
      > had quite a few accidents in its first few years of
      > introduction to the
      > local scence. (last March, a snowboarding
      > instructors hit me in the back
      > while I was snowboarding with my son and I had to
      > stay in bed for 3 weeks)
      > Kiting has been mature so much now with a networks
      > of schools across the
      > globe and online information such as
      > kitesurfingschool.org that can
      > guide newbies through the safety issues of the
      > sport.
      > We will continue to spread the awareness and work on
      > improving the
      > safety issues but the information is fairly readily
      > available now at
      > schools and online sites. Maybe it's time to drop
      > the "dangerous sport"
      > label for kiting?
      > Maybe it's time to use the following phrase to
      > describe kiting safety:
      > "Kiting is a reasonable safe sport as long as one
      > follows proper safety
      > guidelines ..."
      > Hung.

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