What to Wear Kitesurfing
If you’re a kitesurfing novice, amongst other questions, you may be wondering what to wear for your first session. With so many options, choosing the right gear can be a daunting task, but here at F-One, we want to make it a little bit easier for you! With that in mind, we’ve provided a list of basic kitesurfing clothing and accessories that are a must to wear while out on the waves:
As with many water sports, the best thing to wear for kitesurfing is a wetsuit. However, don’t just pick out any old wetsuit; take your time to look for one that’s been specifically designed for this water sport in particular. Not only will it include special features, but it will also ensure that you can remain out on the waves for longer.
Usually, kitesurfing wetsuits are made from neoprene to improve flexibility and make it easier for riders to perform certain manoeuvres. The outer shell of kitesurfing wetsuits is also made using more robust materials to increase their durability and limit damage. Consequently, opting for a specialised suit rather than a generic wetsuit will drastically help to improve your performance during a session while keeping you as warm and comfortable as possible.
Depending on when you will be going kitesurfing, you may want to opt for either a summer or winter wetsuit. If you’ve read our guide to choosing a kitesurfing wetsuit, you’ll know how important it is to consider the conditions you’ll be riding in as these can greatly influence the style of suit you buy. Generally speaking, when the weather is warmer (and we mean substantially warmer than the tepid temperatures of the British summer), we recommend opting for a 2mm shorty. Alternatively, when it’s colder, a 5/4/3mm full or hooded suit will ensure you can take on the chilly wind and waves throughout the autumn and winter.
Booties, Hoods and Gloves
Kitesurfing accessories like booties, hoods and gloves will also help keep the cold at bay and are a must for those who are kitesurfing for extended periods in wintery conditions. As with wetsuits, each of these items are usually made from neoprene and can protect your extremities from small injuries such as blisters and cuts, as well as the cold.
Additionally, booties and gloves can also help riders improve their grip on both their kite and board while out on the waves. However, if you ride with footstraps, make sure you adjust the straps accordingly so your booties fit in.
If you’re lucky enough to be riding in some of the warmer European kitesurfing spots, sturdy swimwear is a great alternative to a shorty wetsuit and will even allow you to catch some rays while out on your kiteboard. Whether it’s swim shorts, a bikini or an all-in-one swimming costume, warmer weather permits less clothing, so instead of covering up, why not opt for your favourite swimwear instead?
Unlike regular shorts, board shorts are made from a lightweight material that dries quickly and includes a tie at the front to ensure they are kept on in even the choppiest conditions. Created with flexible fabric, most board shorts will allow for a broader range of movement than regular styles and thus are a much better choice if you’re looking for an extra layer to wear while kitesurfing. If your shorts are too tight, not only will they limit your movement but if under too much strain, could also rip.
Finally, while it’s vital to have the correct clothing during a session in the water, having something to warm you up when you get out is just as important. Ponchos are a simple but effective item of clothing that can be used to cover up while getting changed out of your wetsuit. As well as providing you with something snuggly to wear, ponchos also offer some form of privacy meaning you can slip into something warmer without having to battle to remain hidden.
While these are just some of the best items to wear for kitesurfing, there are plenty more to add to your collection depending on where, when and how frequently you go kitesurfing. At F-One Kites UK, we have a fantastic range of kitesurfing gear, from Manera wetsuits to bamboo fabric ponchos, so why not have a browse today?