Dan Sweeney, UK Pro Kitesurfing Champion has been shredding at the Lagoon recently.
Here he explains how riding at Lagoon Wake Park helps his Kitesurfing…
I can always remember my first Cable session when I was a year into my Kitesurfing. The fact of riding on butter flat water in a controlled environment was amazing! I can’t stress how much the cable is a perfect training tool for your Kitesurfing and there are some key points you can work on to send your board and riding skills through the roof.
The cable is controlled by an operator and your primary and only concerns are to hold onto the handle and ride, as opposed to Kiting where your looking out for other Kiters, controlling your Kite, trying to get riding and looking out for those nasty ankle breaker bits of chop!
The pull of the cable is consistent and quite high. This makes it an easy progression to get up and riding, to feel your board, learn how to distribute your weight across it and also how to engage an edge. This normally takes a considerable amount of time on a Kite purely because of the other dimensions and points your thinking about. On the cable once you are riding you can literally look down at your feet see how your riding and what effects your stance and most importantly building your muscle memory.
The only main difference is that your not hooked into the pull through a harness and you are using your arms to hold on. This can seem tiring and hard to start with but there is nothing better than engaging your core strength and learning to relax. This will help you massively when starting to ride along powered by a kite as you will learn to relax into the harness which is super important.
Although some techniques of riding behind a Kite and a cable may differ you will naturally find an efficient stance to soak up the pull of the cable to get you planning comfortably across the water. I think its important to not think too much to your stance between the two as over time your technique will improve naturally.
The most important things are that your on the water, learning to manage direct pull and drive on the water, your learning how you can transfer your intentions through your feet to your board and gaining this experience and knowledge which is the closest to Kiteboarding and will really give you a light wind alternative or training tool to get you to the next level in your learning progression.
Take the next step to improving your riding and get on that cable. The obstacles you can ride and air tricks capable on the park opens up another whole dimension of possibilities and fun! the improvements made to lagoon wake park over the winter have made it brilliant for all levels of rider, especially the addition on a new third cable dedicated for beginners, which has been part funded by the BWSW.
Ride and have fun
To find out more about Wakeboarding at Lagoon Wake Park.