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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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Old 06-29-2011
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Opinions on windsurfing/kitesurfing

Just wondering what some think about using windsurfing or kitesurfing as sailing "experience". I don't mean to replace actual sail time or anything, but I can get a cheap windsurfing rig until funds come together for a real boat, and until I figure out what I want.
I realize that the rigging and equipment is totally different, but I guess I'm after the 'feel' of it, and maybe windsurfing is better than nothing?
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Old 06-29-2011
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Better than nothing agreed but go with a sailing dinghy if you can. You can catch a good deal these days on craigslist.
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Old 06-29-2011
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I learned a lot about winds and currents while windsurfing in my 20s. You really learn to read the wind as you need to anticipate gusts and lulls.

I still windsurf on occasion and it is a great workout. Builds core strength.
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Thanks guys, I appreciate the feedback. I definitely need to think about it a little more.
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Old 07-04-2011
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Have you ever sailed a boat?
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Old 07-04-2011
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Windsurfing is related to sailing more than kitesurfing. You are in control of the sail, just like on a boat. Kitesurfing is fun and addictive, but relates more to wakeboarding I think...

Last edited by JohnRPollard; 07-08-2011 at 03:25 PM. Reason: removed link to commercial website
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Old 07-05-2011
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Yes, but only a little sailing. I'd say that I'm novice still-
A couple short jaunts on a Sunfish years ago,
Chartered 40+ footers with family when I was a kid

I found a couple dinghys locally for cheap, so I might go that route and skip the windsurfing, although it does look like a lot of fun.
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Old 07-05-2011
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If your objective is to improve your general sailing skills, I would agree that the sailing dinghy is the better approach.

I used to windsurf a lot -- back in the '70s and early '80s. It is definitely a blast.

But they are not as much fun in light air, so you will tend to only go out when there is a good breeze blowing. What then ends up happening, is that you go so fast on these planing boards that the apparent wind is almost always far forward.

So you do not get the same practice as you would in a dinghy where you have to learn to manage the boat on all points of sail, and in varying wind strengths. In other words, the dinghy sailing experience is much more similar to larger displacement hull sailboats. Plus, you can take a friend and a picnic along.
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Old 09-03-2011
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kitesurfing is much fun, a bit diff from sailing.

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Last edited by JohnRPollard; 10-14-2011 at 09:03 AM. Reason: removed commercial links
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Old 09-03-2011
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i suggest that if u want to go windsurfing,kitesurfing,u must have the best quality of equipments..


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Last edited by JohnRPollard; 10-14-2011 at 09:04 AM. Reason: removed commercial links
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