Is Your Child Ready to Learn How to Kiteboard by Julia Castro

Is Your Child Ready to Learn How to Kiteboard by Julia Castro

If you would like to know how to teach little kids how to kiteboard, Julia Castro is here to give you some very good advice.

My name is Julia Castro, 22 years old, born in Fuerteventura and the eldest of 5 siblings.
I am here to focus on a difficult subject which is how to teach little kids how to kite (less than 11-12 years old).

What should you have in mind? Are your kids ready? What do you need to teach them? I’ll tell you my experience through my 2 little siblings, Jacqueline (9 years old) and Christian (7 years old).

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

1. Do they really/truly want to learn?

It is the first and most important thing you should ask them.

Jackie and Chris have been coming to the beach with me for the last 5 summers. They have seen me kiting and kited with me on my back and standing on my board and the last 3 years I would ask them: “Do you guys want to learn?”. They just said yes, truly.

I just don’t think it makes any sense to push a kid that doesn’t want to do it. Does it?

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

2. Adapt to their rhythm (but keep the discipline).

Kiteboarding can be hard for kids so I recommend you to know your kids and read them before things happens for you to be able to anticipate.

For instance, the first day Jackie wanted to be with the kite on the sand the whole day but she needed to know her limits that’s why after 1 hour and a half I stopped. Chris in the other hand after half an hour was done… Little by little. They set the limits.

I can also recommend not do to everything they ask you to (you don’t give them candy every time they ask you, right?) so when you loose their attention try to trick them by doing something new or something which will just catch their interest. Simply find the balance!

Tip: I never do more than 2 hours by day. Better that they ask you for more than they become extremely tired and not really happy to go kiting.

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

3. Find the right gear.

Essential. Find something they like and mainly, that fits them and helps them to progress.

In my case the perfect gear was:

Kites: North Kiteboarding MONO 3,5m and 5m
Bar: 22m lines Quad Bar from North Helmet we got from Red Shark Fuerteventura.
Board: North Gonzalez 134 Get them covered and safe!
Use sunscreen (like Swox or Sunzaper) and get them a wetsuit if the water is cold.

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

4. Adapt the theory.

Kiteboarding theory can be tiring and boring, and even more for kids.

Every kid is different and you need to know the way they learn better. In the case of my siblings it was a little bit of theory and application. They got everything super fast!

It is also important that you make sure they understand what you’re saying! Take your time, explain slowly, little by little and be patient. Make them be curious about what they’re learning.

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

5. Do it together.

I believe since kiteboarding it’s such an individual sport it can be very good, especially for kids, to do the sport as a team. Team work can be so positive, not only for kiteboarding but for every life aspect. Everything they are learning now will make the adults they’ll be in the future.

Show them how to care, to share, to respect and to help others… If it’s another kid or their own sibling it’s even better.

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

7. Give them confidence.

I was very surprised by how much confidence my little siblings had in me.

I’ve been teaching adults a lot and you can feel they don’t believe in you 100% and they try to experiment by themselves (not too bad to do it sometimes).

But with the kids it was blind confidence in everything I was saying. No doubt at all.

If you’re going to give the responsibility of your child to someone else, make sure they know each other and that your kid feels confident and believes in his/her instructor. Confidence is the key.

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

8. Show them how to believe in themselves.

With Chris everything was going slower but with Jackie we went to do bodydrag the third day of teaching and at the end of the day we did the first attempts of waterstart.

When I told her she had to do the same on the water she was very scared but I told her that she could do it and body drag with her on my back, I demonstrated her how to do it. She went in the water and did it with 2 hands for a lot of times and then she suddenly was body dragging and going upwind.

Give kids confidence, it’s probably one of the biggest lessons you can give them in life.


9. Show them security.

Show them how the safety release works, how to activate it and mount it themselves. Leash activation. When to and when not to… All this points should be more than clear.

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

10. Don't forget to make them smile.

If they are not smiling stop almost immediately. This sport is all about fun and enjoying. Let them love kiteboarding as much as you do.

Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

Things you have to know about this article.

  • Jackie made her first meter kiting after 3 days.
  •  I got her attached all the time to me through a mix between few leashes connected and ropes.
  • She took the lessons with a lot of time in between (I wanted them to ask me to go kiting, not me having to push them).
  • Chris is still with the kite on land, he’s asking all the time when he can go to the water.
  • Chris is very technical, he love’s to know things I never thought a kid would ask.
  • Chris managed to find out how to activate the security of the chicken loop even before me showing him how to kite (and he managed to put everything back in place all alone).


Is your kid ready to kiteboard - Julia Castro

Written by Julia Castro

Please follow Julia on Facebook and Instagram.

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