self rescue

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self rescue

Postby noFriends15 » Thu Feb 07, 2008 10:06 pm

I need you help to settle a dispute I had with my dad. We're both newer kiters but can go upwind and he can jump. We have forgotten the exact details of self rescue from the lesson days. When all hell breaks loose you land/crash the kite in the water, unhook, take off the leash grab one of the leading lines or 5th if it has 1 and quickly swim up it to secure the kite while being careful not to get wrap in your hands or feet or neck for that matter. From here you just grab the wingtips and try to get back to shore then get busy undoing tangles from your lines. This is my method. Or do you grab a back steering line and do the same thing. I don't think this is right. My dads way is land the kite then wrap the bar up but before doing so take a few feet in from a center line and make sure that it's a bit shorter than the others so if you kite does take off the shorter one will land it. From here you wrap your bar then self-rescue. I think this way is very dangerous, stupid and and easy way to lose a finger or kiting equipment. Please clarify this for me, and I have 5 bucks riding on it also! :grin: Thanks guys
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Postby solo flight » Fri Feb 08, 2008 2:31 am

It must be one kitelength shorter,or with the 5th up to the stopper,before you wind your lines.

Myself I always try to get to the kite as quick as possible,so I trail along one line,steering line for me,until I'm sitting on the kite and then wind the lines afte disconnecting half of my lines from the kite.
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Postby 2talented » Fri Feb 08, 2008 10:41 am

The only other advice I would give would be if you are using a kite with a bridle that you may want to keep the lines attached. The reason is that in order for you to "fly" the kite in the direction you want to self rescue, you need to hold the bridles in order for the kite to get the desired shape.
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Postby stacey » Fri Feb 08, 2008 11:36 am

I'd say call it a draw. I think it's good to know both ways. IKOs standard is to wind up your lines in the water, but I don't think you can say, "this way is right and the only way to do it" on something like this. I only use that method when there's no wind, no rush, I'm really far out, I have all the time in the world, or am about to be picked up by a boat. In most situations, I use your method ... personally I think it's easier and safer and find that I have very few tangles in the lines when I get to the beach (as long as there's not a lot of seaweed). I think it's about what works for you, and what makes sense for the situation.
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Postby mnpaslay » Fri Feb 08, 2008 11:51 am

From a practical standpoint, I was recently in Puerto Rico kiting and they do a lot of self rescues at the spot I was at. They also have their students do a lot as well. Asking the instructors pretty much the same question, they had this to say:

1. Both methods can work; however, not wrapping your lines, just following one line to the kite results is less situations. They said they have seen weird things happen to people when they wrap the lines in as they approach the kite. Some of this things include, lines getting stuck on bottom causing kite to come alive, unknown knots farther in lines causing kite to come alive. Initial wrap sliding off, causing kite to come alive. Basically what they said is the one line method is most assured way that kite will not come alive again.

2. Do not swim towards kite, kicking and swimming increases your chances of getting caught in the lines. Try as best you can to follow one line to your kite staying away from other lines. Usually the current or wind will push the lines in one direction, swim away from this direction. Once you arrive at the kite, flip it over, sit on the leading edge and pull your lines in. Wrap them on your bar and your done.

So, their method is:

1. Land kite (depending on kite, for Best land it on steering line)
2. Completely unhook yourself and leash
3. Follow one line (steering line for Best, fifth line if it has one) to kite
4. Do not swim or kick, avoid lines as best you can, pull yourself to kite
5. Once at kite, flip it over, sit on leader edge on kite
6. Carefully pull lines in, placing them on kite in orderly fashion
7. Once you get the bar, wrap the lines on the bar
8. Secure lines to bar by making a loop with the lines, twisting it and putting over bar.
9. Use kite to get to shore....
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Postby michaelt » Fri Feb 08, 2008 3:28 pm

When there is no wind (or it's too weak), then I am with your dad.

When the wind is strong and the kite can take off, then you must be unhooked, and the #1 objective is to get to you kite as quick and as safe as possible. It's hard for me to imagine that while being unhooked your dad can nicely wrap the lines keeping the tension perfectly on just one line. I personally can't and use the method described above (by mnpaslay).
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Postby noFriends15 » Fri Feb 08, 2008 4:15 pm

thanks guys for all your advice! hopefully will help me and other beginners. now i just have to convince my dad that i don't owe him anything. my question though is i have a lf havoc should i walk up the steering line or a center line? thanks again
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Postby stacey » Fri Feb 08, 2008 5:23 pm

now i just have to convince my dad that i don't owe him anything.

If he gives you any problems, send him my way :lol: Although his is the textbook, oldschool one (that IMO needs to be rethunk), yours is the more practical one that, judging by the responses, many people seem to prefer.
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Postby algor » Fri Feb 08, 2008 5:46 pm

I will be short:

1) Never leave your kite "alone" (without leash!), never.
2) Never grab with "simple" hands the lines! If wind goes stronger / kite re-launch / you need hands to do something other... you will be in troubles!
3) avoid to swim to kite with lines "free" to kill you...

My hint: take a IKO instructor and learn the self-rescue IKO procedure ;) that is simple and safe for ALL situations: low / strong wind etc etc.

HINT to Best: could you add a Selfrescue handles to new BEST kites?
Image NewKiteZone.it 100% Safe = 100% Fun
Official Best School, using IKO methods.
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Postby stacey » Fri Feb 08, 2008 6:48 pm

IKO does a lot of good things for the sport, but it bugs me that on this one point, they've decided that their method is the only best and safe way and people hang onto it like it's the Word of God. Everyone's entitled to an opinion, but not everyone feels that this method is best, obviously. I've had more problems and near-misses with the wrap-the-lines-around-the-bar method than with the alternate method described above. On the other hand, I've never had a problem pulling myself to the kite, along one line, after undoing my leash, and just because a group of kiters has formed an organization and decided that their way is best doesn't mean I have to listen to or agree with them. Both methods have their uses, and for me, which method I use depends on the situation.
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Postby solo flight » Fri Feb 08, 2008 6:53 pm

The Waroo selfrescues great on the bridle.

If you're doing a selfrescue the kite is in the water more or less the same as it would be in the air,you lying on the lower wingtip while using the upper wingtip to drag you to shore,with SLE's this can be troublesome as the kite pitches to and fro,to prevent this I tie the upper steeringline pigtail to the first bridlebridge ,if you now grab the bridle you'll see you have a perfect profile to drag you above your head.
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Postby solo flight » Fri Feb 08, 2008 6:59 pm

Second that, common sense and not winding lines around your neck are way to go,take care in offshore winds .
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Postby michaelt » Fri Feb 08, 2008 7:03 pm

Self-rescue with leash attached, no grabbing the lines, and no swimming with "free" lines (i.e. all 4 lines are to be under tension at all times) - I guess just wrap up the bar until you get to the kite. This is how I do it ... only when the wind dies. Has any IKO instructor actually done this in a moderate or strong wind? I'd love to see that.
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Postby algor » Sat Feb 09, 2008 7:25 am

IKO does a lot of good things for the sport, but it bugs me that on this one point, they've decided that their method is the only best and safe way and people hang onto it like it's the Word of God. Everyone's entitled to an opinion, but not everyone feels that this method is best, obviously. I've had more problems and near-misses with the wrap-the-lines-around-the-bar method than with the alternate method described above. On the other hand, I've never had a problem pulling myself to the kite, along one line, after undoing my leash, and just because a group of kiters has formed an organization and decided that their way is best doesn't mean I have to listen to or agree with them. Both methods have their uses, and for me, which method I use depends on the situation.


Dear Stacey,
I'm not a "religeous", I'm a rational rider AND a IKO instructor (as second).
I have to be SURE my student dont go in troubles or risk and I can explain why your "simple" methot is dangerous:

1) if the wind increase when you are in mid of the way, between bar and kite, unleashed... and the kite start to pull a lot... Do you think a 45kg girl can "keep" in hands from one tensioned line (a kite looping or dragging)? What will happen to her hands?

2) Why risk to be wrapped by floating lines all around if that method can avoid any problem about it?

3) with the way you suggest = <equal> = end_of_session, I can bet about it. All lines will be so tangled you will be happy to untangle it before sunshine...

4) You risk a boat to help you because thay not "see" a cue of lines floating in the mid of waves...

5) You should know: NEVER leave unleashed your kite, never. A uncontrolled kite can be mortal.

6) IKO method can be done force-less (about) using the bar as lever and in the same time to approaching the kite keeping order on lines. Also a kid can do that also in waves & 30 kts (!)

7) What happening if the wind when you are on kite goes very strong if you are unleashed?!??! You (generic "you") will cannot keep in your hands
and you loose your kite and you will be in the middle of ocean...

So, I practice that method much before IKO codify that and before I know about IKO. But I try to use a kite at maximum responsibility for me and the others.

A hint about bridles, when you are on the kite, on Best 07/08 models keep the upper part from a gray (thicker) lines to avoid chaps and the bottom hand on the t3/t4 depending on wind speed.
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Postby noFriends15 » Sat Feb 09, 2008 10:13 am

so let me get this clear. There are 2 or more methods that you guys use.

1. the IKO (wrapping bar when you crash.)
Im a little confused on this one. You said never unclip your leash. Do you you just leave it on where you put it for riding. Also, maybe I read wrong but you said keep all 4 line tensioned doesn't sound safe. I would think pulling in a few meters and keeping that line shorter, which line should I choose for this?

2. swimming to kite then wrapping bar while sitting on leading edge.
Which line do I walk on last years Havoc?

Method 1 for light nowind
Method 2 for high wind when your really tired

And yes I have had professional instruction, just haven't practiced selfrescue for a bit and needed to make sure I had it right

Thanks guys! I never thought I would get so many replies
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