Practically everyone enjoys childhood memories of watching a paper and balsa wood kite take wing as the ball of twine tethers the flying machine to earth, but today’s materials and technological research have combined to take this outdoor favorite to an entirely new level. Power kites and stunt kites take the simple, idyllic pastime of watching a colorful diamond in the sky, to high speed, thrilling excitement, using the tremendous force of the wind.Unlike single line kites, stunt varieties use two or more lines and a special handle to twist, turn, and flip over and around. These acrobatics often lead to local, national, and international competitions that are as much fun to compete in as they they are to observe. The added control allows flyers to use wind force to duck and dive and somersault across the sky. Power kites, on the other hand, use inflatable foils to harness an astounding amount of wind force, which is then used to “pro-pull” a person, a 3-wheeled buggy, or a 4-wheeled landboard at surprisingly fast speeds. How Do Power Kites Work?Much like their predecessors, inflatable foils capture the force of the wind and then allow that force to be used to create forward motion. Some of the largest varieties are used on commercial shipping vessels to reduce fuel consumption by as much as 30%. Depending upon the size of the inflatable foil, the force can be dangerous if certain safety precautions are not taken. Since the foil is inflatable, it weighs less than other kites of the same size. When it rises into the wind, very little wind force is lost and the flyer very rapidly feels themselves being pulled. Add some wheels, and you can really start moving!Play It SafeThese thrill monsters are not appropriate for small children. Older children can learn to safely control some of the smaller foils, but adult supervision should always occur. The speeds that can be attained can result in injury if the proper safety gear and habits are not used. Most of it is common sense. Gloves, a helmet, knee pads, and some forethought can prevent most injuries. As exciting and thrilling as this ride can be, it’s worth the risks. Most people choose to practice with their first power kite on a beach, where the sand is far more forgiving than, say, a parking lot. Choosing Your First Power KiteAs much as you may want to become airborne yourself, your first power kite should be small enough for you to develop some skills without dropping you in the next county. With these aeronautical wonders, size really does matter. The bigger the foil, the bigger the pull. The larger foils are used to pull buggies and landboards and they come with multiple flying lines and braking lines. Some of the larger foils are also known as traction kites. When shopping for your first power kite, be sure to look for a high quality product that is made with high performance fabric. Also, look for a site that offers live operator assistance and a kite buyers guide, to help you find exactly what you are looking for. Once your power kite arrives, all you will need is a windy day, and a good-sized field or stretch of open beach to discover the thrills and excitement that come when you ride the wind!Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Harmen writes for The Kite Store, where you can find everything needed to enjoy flying kites. Power kites and stunt kites are the newest, fastest, most exciting way to harness the wind.