If you are a kitesurfer or you have friends who are, I am sure you already thought or talked about how addictive this sport can be. This is an article about the symptoms of a kite addict. I observed myself and my friends from the Kiting Addiction Club (we call ourselves that) and selected the most important and easy to spot symptoms. Take a look at yourself, identify the severity of your addiction and get a quick remedy. Here are the 5 symptoms:
1. If there are more than 20 knots, nothing else matters.
This might be the first symptom you and your friends will notice. When the wind is blowing, everyone knows where to find you. Family, boyfriends or girlfriends, commitments, parties, survival food shopping, nothing matters to you if there is enough wind to have an amazing session. This symptom might cause side effects like people getting annoyed with you because of breaking commitments or disappearing from the dry map. But most of the addicts find a quick solution that actually comes naturally: make friends at the beach who are equally as addicted as you. Is that healthy?
2. You don’t know how but you become the most accurate wind forecaster of your town.
One day, you find yourself being the master and most accurate weather forecast expert in your country. As the wind is the fuel for all the kiteboarders, you start chasing and controlling it like crazy. This is a clear sign: when you check your favorite wind forecast station more than your favorite social media channel. You will also find yourself using domestic but very accurate tools to read the wind such as the curtains of your bedroom or a “forecast tree”. I can seriously know what session I am going to have by how many times my bedroom curtain touches my feet. Then I confirm the information by the way a special palm tree in front of my house dances in the wind.
A variation of this symptom is when you start checking the wind forecast from other countries and following that, then checking flight companies and making excuses for work. If you see yourself between those lines, don’t worry, I am sure your addicted friends will give you support and build up your traveling plans to chase the wind around the world, because as a good addict, you will move everything that is possible to make it happen. Is that too crazy?
3. You wear your Kitesurfing harness 24/7.
So being an addict is not easy to control. Neither to hide. If you check yourself in the mirror you will find some signs of this symptom. A harness tan is a classic. Brown face, brown arms, white tummy, brown hips and legs. There are other variations depending on the weather conditions or the context of your addiction, like dry suit tans (white body tan face), raccoon tan (from sunglasses), etc. Are you worried? Read our blog “Is There Vanity in Kiting?” to feel better.
4. Your car, and your life, is like a kitesurfing shop at the beach.
The kitesurf addict has a shitty car. Moving your kiting gear in and out of the car as well as being a person constantly breaded in sand, makes your car a dirty kitesurfing garage. You can find things in your “going to kite transport” like a beach of sand, lots of empty water bottles, sticky towels and cloths, forgotten rashguards hiding under a smelly humid towel, spare swimsuits and, of course your kites, boards, bar and harnesses. Is your life becoming a mess? Clean your car on a non-windy day.
5. Your emotional status has a strong relation with the wind.
Adrenaline, happiness, freedom, accomplishment, challenge, fun, being active, healthy and being with nature… This is what kiting brings to the addict and with it, the addict will have the best mood ever. However, if you are somewhere “kiteable” on a windy day and you don’t have your kiting gear, a rain of emotions will invade your body. You will feel stupid, frustrated, mad, and nervous. Remedy— be always ready for the action, you never know!
Is that too much? Is it healthy or is it too crazy? As an addict, I think it is the healthiest thing that ever happened to me. I never felt as happy and alive. If being addicted to kitesurf brings that to your life, I say keep it forever.