Impact vests

Hdip

Michael Peterson status
Apr 23, 2005
3,178
625
113
Malibu, CA
Yup. I don't wear one, but winging on some lakes they require them. I've never found a "cheap" one that's worth buying, so I just don't go to those lakes.
 

Hdip

Michael Peterson status
Apr 23, 2005
3,178
625
113
Malibu, CA
Yeah, I'm not good. It's fun though. The main thing is it takes me far away from other people.
 

Hdip

Michael Peterson status
Apr 23, 2005
3,178
625
113
Malibu, CA
Yup, it's extremely frustrating. All those times you thought it was blown out when you were a surfer. There wasn't even any wind. That's why you end up at lakes. You need 15MPH steady for it to be good when you're learning. That's practically sand blowing across the beach strong. Then of course if it's to strong it sucks even worse.

Also I'm up in LA. We get a bit more wind than San Diego.
 

juandesooka

OTF status
Jan 12, 2009
316
250
63
Yup, it's extremely frustrating. All those times you thought it was blown out when you were a surfer. There wasn't even any wind. That's why you end up at lakes. You need 15MPH steady for it to be good when you're learning. That's practically sand blowing across the beach strong. Then of course if it's to strong it sucks even worse.

Also I'm up in LA. We get a bit more wind than San Diego.
Haha, that's exactly what I tell surfer cross-overs about the torture of wind-chasing! I saw this most clearly visiting my mother who lives in Puerto Escondido: blown out every day by 10am, surf destroyed everywhere, but it's 7-8kts, not enough to kite even with a 17m ... but just enough to try and fail, over and over. All you can do is try to find a spot where the geography somehow funnels it a little, so even an extra couple kts may be enough to make it work. That's another part of becoming a wind chaser: trust those who came before you. They all drive for hours to the same spot, which seems kooky to a surfer: but that's because the spot has the highest probability of success...lesson learned after years of failing in the spots I thought were doable or better. :)

Impact vest...they always seem too expensive for what they are! I had a dakine surface, provides more float and protection than most. Impact vests are often one of the loss leader sale items at the big kite/foil shops online in their sale events (black friday, etc), so keep watch for deals.
 

Hdip

Michael Peterson status
Apr 23, 2005
3,178
625
113
Malibu, CA
So true!

Learned this when I started sailing.

Did you quit surfing?
Right tool for the job. I surfed 3 times last summer. I surfed once this winter. If it's overhead and barreling I enjoy surfing more. If it's 4 foot or even head high and meh with 1 take off spot and 8 guys. I'd much rather foil.

Example: I looked at pitas and it was head high to just over head, looked really fun actually. I had a surfboard in my car. There were 10 guys on that take off spot. I instead went down and foiled Mondos and didn't deal with another surfer the whole session. Plus everytime you stand up you ride for minimum 45 seconds. Push that close to 2 minutes if your cardio is good. Surfing is what? 8 seconds per ride?

On the wing in one run, I did 7 minutes on foil, covered over a mile in distance. I'm not even good. When I fell I got right back on the board and was up and on foil again within 30 seconds. No paddling back to a peak, no sitting waiting for your turn on the next wave. The guys that are good are doing 2 hours on foil in a session with 30 miles of ground covered. Unlimited # of waves caught. (On Oahu)
 

casa_mugrienta

Duke status
Apr 13, 2008
37,290
11,665
113
Petak Island
Impact vest...they always seem too expensive for what they are! I had a dakine surface, provides more float and protection than most. Impact vests are often one of the loss leader sale items at the big kite/foil shops online in their sale events (black friday, etc), so keep watch for deals.
I bought one with the anticipation of protecting my torso when learning. A waste?
 

Hdip

Michael Peterson status
Apr 23, 2005
3,178
625
113
Malibu, CA
You're going to fall a lot. So it's worth it. No reason not to wear it. I wear a helmet now, but have never hit my head foiling. *shrugs* I didn't own one for the first 3 years. Only started wearing one last summer.
 

sozzle

Michael Peterson status
Feb 23, 2009
1,929
179
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www.youtube.com
You're going to fall a lot. So it's worth it. No reason not to wear it. I wear a helmet now, but have never hit my head foiling. *shrugs* I didn't own one for the first 3 years. Only started wearing one last summer.
tell me it's one of those gladiator style ones.

whats the deal with peeps moving back to helmet use lately? have there been some knocks?
 

Hdip

Michael Peterson status
Apr 23, 2005
3,178
625
113
Malibu, CA
Nope, Gath with a visor. I got sick of having a sunburnt nose and face. I can go out and keep the visor down anytime I'm not up and riding. My eyes aren't burnt at the end of the day. I barely have to use sunscreen.

When you only need 1 foot crap to go out in and have the time of your life you end up being in the water A LOT more than when you need chest high and above to have fun.

There has been a lot more focus on head injuries in surf media lately though. I think it'll eventually get somewhere closer to snowboarding and skateboarding. I would like to see it more normalized. We shall see though. I have a hard time wearing it if I'm not at a pure foil break. I haven't worn it when I surfed on a regular board yet.
 

juandesooka

OTF status
Jan 12, 2009
316
250
63
Impact vest: I wore it at start, not any more. The likelihood of getting hit by board or foil isn't really high. It helps with wipeouts where you breach and fall on your back from full mast height....that can be one of those slaps that takes your breath away. If you have one already, worth wearing, but I probably wouldn't spend the big bucks (vs kiting where impacts can be massive, worth having for sure while learning).

Helmet: I am a big believer! I am the Nerd Captain at my local, one of the last few to still wear a helmet kiting or foiling. I figure getting hit by your own board is the main danger, both foiling and bigger wave surfing too. I went over the falls foiling last winter, with foil tip to side of head, 6 stitches...a rare day I wasn't wearing my helmet. But other people are also a hazard: this year I got run over twice by kooks on longboards too, one with a bad leg injury, but either one could have been a head strike, with emerg or worse. Hate to be dramatic about worst case scenarios, but if you get a good smack by your board or foil in the wrong situation, and get knocked unconscious, you could drown and be dead before anyone even knows you're in trouble. Among the many ways to go, that seems a particularly stupid one, as it's avoidable. <shudder>

Anyways, back to the positive: both kiting and winging, the promo line could be endless waves plus the paddling is fun! It really is remarkable to get wind power harnessed for your pleasure ... especially for surfers who have spent decades hating it ... like a kid tasting ice cream for the first time.
 
Aug 28, 2020
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I have a couple of Billabong vests I bought for wake foiling (required by law). I often wear one winging and it does help with warmth on cold days. One of my buddies got speared in the back and it poked a hole in his vest but did no damage to him. I like the extra flotation as well. I took a wingboard to the mouth twice so I swapped to a coil leash; the vest keeps my a little higher in the water so maybe I would only get hit in the throat?!

Things can get funky learning things like heelside tacks so a vest helps with confidence if nothing else.
 

Kaser1

Tom Curren status
May 3, 2004
10,246
204
63
Foiltown , Hawai'i
Right tool for the job. I surfed 3 times last summer. I surfed once this winter. If it's overhead and barreling I enjoy surfing more. If it's 4 foot or even head high and meh with 1 take off spot and 8 guys. I'd much rather foil.

Example: I looked at pitas and it was head high to just over head, looked really fun actually. I had a surfboard in my car. There were 10 guys on that take off spot. I instead went down and foiled Mondos and didn't deal with another surfer the whole session. Plus everytime you stand up you ride for minimum 45 seconds. Push that close to 2 minutes if your cardio is good. Surfing is what? 8 seconds per ride?

On the wing in one run, I did 7 minutes on foil, covered over a mile in distance. I'm not even good. When I fell I got right back on the board and was up and on foil again within 30 seconds. No paddling back to a peak, no sitting waiting for your turn on the next wave. The guys that are good are doing 2 hours on foil in a session with 30 miles of ground covered. Unlimited # of waves caught. (On Oahu)
The erBB has come a loooooong way. I remember spamming the main discussion forum a few years ago with my foil posts with nobody giving 2f's about foiling and the mods made a foil section to get me outa there. Now look at you guys, so cute with these posts, warms my heart. :roflmao::cheers::dancing: