Do you want to buy a kitesurf harness? Then you first want to know what is on the market.
Bying a harness
Are you looking for a new kite harness? And if you have not yet made a choice (or do you want more information?) Then read on. There are 2 types of kite harnesses on the market:
- Seat harness
- Waist harness
Every trapeze has its advantages and disadvantages. Generally when you start taking lessons you will get a sit-down strap and a small kite to practise from the kitesurf school. As a starting kite surfer, this is the harness that you will be in contact with first, but if you take a good look around you on the kite surfing spot, you’ll see hip harnesses everywhere. Why is that?
As I wrote above, when you start taking lessons you usually get a sit-on to attach your kite to. A seat harness is a type of pants that you put on over your wetsuit. There are straps around your upper legs that ensure that the harness is not pulled up by the kite. The hook of a seat harness is situated under your navel and stays in place. The big advantage is that your harness is not pulled up by the kite. As a starting kite surfer you often have the kite at 12 o’clock, which means it can pull the harness up. Certainly for women this is not very nice, before you know it your armor is around your breasts!?! But it’s not handy for men either 😉
Because the hook of the harness is situated under the navel, it is generally easier to reach the bar and the depower cord, because this means that they are a bit lower, and it is easier to cope because the center of gravity is lower. A seat harness is used by novice kite surfers, but also race and slalom kiters often wear a seat harness.
Most kite surfers switch to a waist harness as soon as they can kite a little. A waist harness is a bit higher than a seat harnesse, which gives you more freedom of movement. When you ride with a waist harness for the first time you will notice that it moves upwards. That is not comfortable and it is therefore important before you buy a waist-harness to first test some which are best for your body shape. A hip harness that pushes up red roses does not sail comfortably.
The advantages of a waiste harness is that you have more freedom of movement. Because you have no straps arround your leggs, there is more freedom to move. A waiste harness is lighter and also used to do tricks on the water.
Hardshell harnesses are relatively new. A hardshell harness has a hard core and offers extra support in the lower back. For many kite surfers, these harnesses are a solution and can prevent lower back pain.
Manera is a leader when it comes to hardshell harnesses. Manera has been developing the perfect harness since 2013 and with the EXO harness they are getting close. Used materials such as Ballistic Nylon, an extra thick fabric that will last a very long time. There is a double layer of seamless neoprene at waist height to prevent injuries. And using the “cocoon concept” the harness becomes lighter and thinner. The power of the kite is better distributed over the back and ensures even more riding pleasure.
Mystic has not lagged behind either. This kitesurf brand is known for excellent quality and has released Majestic X on the market this year. It is the most advanced kitesurf harness of the moment and is built with the “Bionic Core Frame innovation” and consists of a carbon frame with horizontal stiffness, but with diagonal flexibility. The used foam layer molds to your body for optimum riding comfort and with the EVA modulator foam layer the harness stays even better on your waist/hip. If you want to buy a new kitesurf harnes, go to a shop that has test models and test multiple models, from seat to hip and from hard to soft kitesurf harnesses. Also test different brands, because each brand has its own fit. You have specific women’s trapezes to ride with. You wear for quite a long time with a kitesurf harness, so a good fit and size is important!