Kiteboarding Taking Off
Kiteboarding as a recognized adventure sport has been around for a little over a decade. Once considered the most dangerous sport on the planet during its early years, today it is getting a second look from water, wind and outdoor sports enthusiasts. Here's why:
- The equipment and gear has improved through the years.
- Instruction for the sport is mushrooming in beach resorts from the coastlines of Brazil, Ecuador, Puerto Rico, Australia, Dominican Republic, Egypt, United Kingdom, France, Italy, Canada, Maui, Florida, Oregon, North Carolina and practically any place you can find water and consistent wind. Definitely a revenue source for the local beach economy.
- A sport dominated by men with noticeable growth in interest from women and teens.
- Kiteboarding is an all year-round sport and has grown into multi-categories including kiteboarding/kitesurfing, snowkiting and landboarding.
- After the investment in lessons and quiver (collective term for kite equipment) all you need is wind, water, snow or sand to enjoy the thrill of the sport.
- Travel is a huge component. Kiters are known to visit exotic places to kite and plan all their vacation around their sport.
- Once a kiter there is no turning back. It is a lifestyle sport.
The kiteboarding lifestyle attracts a certain personality type. It is not for the mass market since it requires time and dedication to get the basics. A single brand new quiver starts at $1,000 and up. While lessons can cost from $450 to another $1,000 and more depending on your learning ability. So who are the crazies getting into the sport?
Professionals who have an average income of $75K and up and high net worth individuals. The sport attracts people from industries that are usually high-stress, high-risk and high-reward including venture capital, finance, medicine, technology and entrepreneurs.
Technology and social media is a big component of a kiter's lifestyle. Kiters with jobs that allow them to remotely stay connected with their professional organizations live a mobile kite life. Bringing their source of income wherever they go. Still considered a niche community of over 200,000 worldwide in 2006 and expected to grow 20% each year, the kiteboarding community is definitely a movement to watch.