Improve your kiting in Langebaan
Planet Kitesurf are some of the world’s leading experts in kite travel and they believe Langebaan’s hard to beat if you’re looking for somewhere to really progress your kiting! Find out why in this feature
Words / Images: Planet Kitesurf and Progression
Langebaan, 90 minutes drive north from Cape Town in South Africa, has a well-deserved reputation as an ideal spot to learn to kite. While more advanced riders might relish the wave spots, howling winds and choppier waters of Cape Town, beginners often feel more at home Langebaan because of the flat water conditions which are much more conducive to a comfortable learning experience.
It’s not just a spot for people taking their first steps in kiting though. The team at Planet have long been big fans of the laid-back lifestyle and lagoon-like conditions of Langebaan and believe it has something to offer kiters of all levels. Here’s a few reasons why…
With its large, obstacle free lagoon, Langebaan is an ideal location to get the hang of foiling. The wind is often softer during the mornings and in the early and late season months of November, March and April the lighter winds can be perfect for foilers.
While it’s tricky to learn at first, once you’ve got the hang of foiling it dramatically increases the amount of time you can spend on the water and it transforms the kiting experience for those who fully embrace it.
It requires greater levels of control yes, but that will transfer over to your kiting on a surfboard or twintip and learning to foil is also an opportunity to do something totally new with your riding. It might just be the new challenge you needed to relight your kiting fire and Langebaan is an ideal place to get a feel for it.
2: Progression-friendly conditions
Langebaan is a more beginner-friendly spot than Cape Town due to the lack of shorebreak, swell or chop. The two main spots in Langebaan – Shark Bay (Kleine Oostewal) and Main Beach – are ideal for any improving kiter with a huge expanse of shallow, warm water and predominantly cross-onshore winds.
The wind is often a little more sedate than in Cape Town as well and you won’t have to contend with a punchy 35 knot+ southeaster on too regular a basis!
3: Other activities – SUPing and yoga
SUPing is the perfect activity for when the wind doesn’t blow or for on those calm mornings in Langebaan. Windtown are more than happy to rent you a board and there are so many places to explore. You can go for a paddle round the island, head down to the picturesque Kraalbaai or see a different side of Shark Bay when it’s not packed with kiters.
Along with salvaging windless days on the water, regular SUPing could make a difference to your kiting level as it builds fitness, improves cores strength and coordination and you can also progress into the waves elsewhere along the coast once you improve.
Riding waves without the power of a kite totally transforms your understanding of them, the way you read them and how you choose them and that increased awareness will make you a far more knowledgable wave rider next time you’re out on a kite.
Another good no-wind option is yoga. It’s also a great way to destress, and the breathing techniques you’ll learn in a yoga session can help you stay composed when you’re out on the water struggling to learn a new trick or just dealing with the stresses and strains of day to day life!