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January 10, 2012


Adrenajen’s KITE POW- Things we Learn Along the Way.

by flykitesports


Lets talk about Line Length!

Over the years I’ve been kiting, bars have come with anywhere between 20 & 30 meter lines and I was taught to use what I’ve got.  But my latest Best performance bar comes with 20m lines and 3m extensions giving the option of flying with different length lines.  My question was what length to use and when?

John Holzhall author of Kiteboarding’s Simple Plan, was one of first kite instructors to put a learning progression into place.

His method of teaching involved flying the kite with no lines just handles and then progressing in 5m increments as the student became more comfortable until the full length lines was reached.  He believes that using shorter lines is like reducing the size of your kite.  This is an interesting theory that can still be used today.

Shorter lines:

  • Decrease the power of the kite.
  • Create a smaller wind window.
  •  Make the kite quicker to respond to steering.
  •   Allow the use of a larger kite in higher wind.
  •   Can be better for learning.

Shorter lines can be handy at some locations such as a crowded beach covered with people and full of other kiters where maneuvering  between other lines in essential.

Longer lines:

  • Increase the power of the kite.
  •  Create a larger wind window.
  •  Make the kite slightly slower to respond to steering.
  •  Allow the use of a smaller kite in lighter wind.
  •  Can allow the kite to fly higher in the sky.

Some locations call for longer lines.  A jetty or point upwind can create a wind shadow close to the water so longer lines will allow the kite to fly higher in the sky where the wind is cleaner.

So with all that in mind it is a great feature to have 3m extensions to put on or take off as needed.  Extensions can expand the wind range of a one kite quiver or make for a quick adjustment change when conditions alter without having to pump up another kite.

Next time your deciding what size kite to pump up also think what line length would work better for the conditions on hand.

Happy kiting!


4 Comments Post a comment
  1. Cole Russell
    Jan 12 2012

    Great info. We use shorter lines for lessons and work up from there as well. The general rule of thumb is every 3m is a kite size.

    • Melissa
      Jan 13 2012

      I have really come to appreciate the shorter, 20 meter, lines myself, I really like how the kite handles with them. I feel a little more confident putting the kids on them too. I am glad you are reading the blog thanks for checking it out! Hope to see you kiting soon!

      Oh yeah, I would love to get more details on your Georgetown event to post on the blog, I know it is coming together fast now. Cheers, mel.

  2. Packy
    Jan 10 2012

    Good advice, Jen

  3. Jan 10 2012

    Thanks for another great and insightful post! Keep ’em Flying.


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