In the grand scheme of things, kiteboarding is a very young sport, “juvenile” let’s say, in comparison to the more “veteran” and long-established sports. However the kite’s history dates back further than most.
The origin of kites is routed in their use as a means of propulsion and it is believed that the Chinese first used kites back in the 13th Century. Fast forward (skipping some other key moments in the 18 and 1900’s), the late 1970’s/early 1980’s were a key turning point for the birth of kiteboarding. New inventions, ideas and patents were coming out thick and fast, and by 1984 brothers Dominique and Bruno Legaignoux began to experiment with the world’s first inflatable kite, demonstrating the first prototype in 1985.
Since then, both kite and board design have changed dramatically. So why has kiteboarding become the world’s greatest board sport? Well….kiteboarding’s roots and inspiration come from a long list of other board sports including windsurfing, surfing, snowboarding, wakeboarding and skating, which provides its participants with an ever‑evolving opportunity for variability, adventure, travel and excitement.
I don’t know of one other sport that provides its participants the freedom you can get from kiting. Freedom to ride by yourself, if so desired. Freedom to ride in almost all conditions. Freedom to swap and change board and or kite styles to suit your mood, wind, water or snow conditions. Freedom to chop and change styles, whether that be racing, surfing, freestyle, wake-style, cruising, long-distance. I truly believe that you’d first run out of money buying equipment before you get bored. Age isn’t a factor either – as long as you have a good ticker you can be on your way (the youngest rider was just 3 years old while the eldest was in his 80’s).
Perhaps that’s why Chapter One | The Kiteboard Legacy Begins was created. To prove that there are so many benefits to being “youthful” sport. To show that the sport is not confined to particular age groups or locations. To show how far they have come in a relatively short space of time, and that there is still so much more to come from the sport.