We caught up with Kitesurfing instructor Sophie Taylor on the delights of Kitesurfing. Check out her tips and insight on how to take up this incredible sport below…
While the scorching temperatures of our long hot summer might seem like a distant memory, the sunshine is still doing its best to shine, basking us in what might well be the last warmth of the year. With this in mind, surely, there has never been a better time to embrace a final hurrah with a break at the beach. Stunning landscapes, ice creams, a chance to top up the tan and a sea that has had all summer to warm up all provide a very welcome break from London life.
An escape to the seaside doesn’t have to just involve an over indulgence in frozen calories though, and within 90 minutes from central London lies Camber Sands. Famous for its dunes and miles of sandy beaches, it’s also got a reputation for the place to go in the South of England for world class extreme sports. Most notably, kitesurfing.
For a weekend break, a kitesurfing lesson is the perfect opportunity to get outside and do something different. Whether with a group of friends, solo or for the perfect date with a difference, even just a taster of what the sport has to offer will have been a weekend well spent. Kitesurfing is renowned as a sport with a host of health and wellbeing benefits. A great way to tone up it does wonders for your fitness and core strength, is a great way to feel connected to the ultimate matriarch that is Mother Nature, and you’ll immediately be welcomed into a community full of fun loving people.
So what actually is kitesurfing? Kitesurfing uses inflatable kites to propel the rider across the surface of the water. The kite is attached to you via a harness, and most kiters start off with a board called a twin tip (like a wakeboard) attached to their feet. The harness takes much of the pull of the kite so don’t be put off if you fear upper body strength isn’t your thing. As the sport increases in popularity and developments with kit are made, so do the number of disciplines available. From waveriding, freestyle, tricks, big air, kitecross, hydrofoiling, downwinders, speed events and racing, there really is something for everyone and endless opportunities for progression.
Whether you are serious about picking up the sport, or just fancy a blast of sea air and throwing a wetsuit on, The Kitesurf Centre have it covered. Take your pick of courses that run from just one day, to up to five days long. They provide everything you need, although if you have your own wetsuit it’s always worth bringing that along. Not sure about kitesurfing? They also run powerkiting, kite buggying and Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) lessons. SUPing has become increasingly popular, and it’s easy to see why. Excellent for training your core and improving balance, it’s also a really easy, fun day activity. Lessons run either on the sea, or cruising along rivers in the local Sussex countryside.
The nearby town of Rye is a picture perfect spot to stay with plenty of options for accommodation, tonnes of restaurants sourcing local produce and fresh seafood, and more than enough choice for somewhere to quench your thirst. For a romantic weekend away (and both of these options are on the pricier side of the scale) The George Hotel in Rye or The Gallivant in Camber Sands itself are your best bet, serving excellent food and offering beautiful instagram worthy interiors. Both are definitely worth a visit for food and drink if not to stay.
So get planning and book your seaside adventure. You’ll return to London merrily exhausted with enviable sun kissed cheeks and salty tousled hair, and if you’re anything like me, addicted to kitesurfing.
Guest Post: Sophie Taylor