Today we are going to go over how to do a backroll to toeside with a downloop transition
This is one of the most stylish kiteboarding transitional-based tricks you can do. It's also probably one of the easiest.
You only have to do a half backroll; the loop timing can be modified for skill and the grab comes very naturally. If you watched and learned from our Jump with Style playlist, we filmed a couple backroll videos like the backroll stalefish and the backroll tail grab. We also have a few videos about riding toeside and we've done some extensive videos on downlooping. If you're feeling uncertain on any part of this trick, give those a watch as well for extra help.
We recommend you download the attached PDF on your phone. Check it before your next session!
This might be your next favorite trick! It's a combination of a few basic tricks that, combined, make for one of the best-feeling transitions in kiteboarding.
Send the kite high
Step One- Send the kite
There are a couple ways to pop and throw a backroll. In this tutorial we'll be using a sent jump. Get good speed, then send the kite deep into the window and up towards noon. As the kite moves up, start to edge and load up the lines. Right before the kite hits noon, pull in on the bar, push off your back leg, and look over your front shoulder.
This will initiate a clean backroll with good height. Remember to pop right as you're sheeting the bar in and come into this with decent speed.
Rotate half a backroll
Step Two- Only do a half roll
As you'll be landing downwind into a transition on this one, you don't have to complete the backroll. Rotate just until what was your back shoulder is lined up downwind and pointed at the kite. This is going set you up for the late grab as well.
You don't have to do an inverted roll for this one. Just like we taught in our Jump with Style playlist, you can do an off-axis roll. It helps to bring your front knee into your chest and poke your back leg up in the air. This will make the grab easier and the roll look stylish.
Grab late and tweak
Step Three- Grab late
Grab late on this one. Right after you complete the half rotation, bring that front knee tight into your chest. Imagine you're trying to knee yourself in the stomach. Reach back with your back hand behind your legs right between your feet. This should feel surprisingly natural. Just like the last step, taking your back hand off the bar is going to set you up for the downloop.
Loop the kite
Step Four- Loop the kite
Now for the fun part! After you tweak out your grab at the apex of your jump you'll start to come back down. Now it's time to pull the loop. If you are not comfortable pulling loops, you can redirect the kite forward like a normal jump, land downwind and then pull the downloop. This will pull you into toeside. We recommend working your way up to pulling the loop in the air. This is going to pull you forward and give you the feeling of a powered trick. It's going to look and feel amazing.
Just like all of our loop-based videos, land flat and downwind. You don't want to land favoring an edge. Technically you're landing toeside, but first you must land flat and redirect the board into a toeside edge. This is done after landing flat and riding downwind. The downloop will naturally pull you back on the the edge as you start to ride away.
When it comes to kiteloops, most kites will get the job done, especially for beginners. That said, some gear does work much better than others. A great rule of thumb is to learn on something no bigger than a 11 or even 10 meter. Larger kites will still loop but they are much slower, more difficult, and not very effective. There are several categories of kites that cater to different styles of riding. We much prefer the freestyle kites in most brands' line-ups. That said, many of the freeride kites work. To demonstrate this, we used the Cabrinha Switchblade 11 to film the majority of this list.
For intermediate to advanced kiteboarders
The fastest, most powerful kites for loops fall in the crossover category. These are three-strut C Hybrid kites designed specifically with kitelooping in mind.
The Switchblade is an outlier on this list. It's technically a freeride kite. The FX is superior in speed and arc, yet the Switchblade packs some power. We chose to film with this kite due to its powerful low end. As we were filming in the Keys, the wind could be quite light. We don't recommend going larger than the 11 for kiteloops unless you are an advanced kiteboarder.
For newer to intermediate kiteboarders
These are faster freeride kites. They're not designed specifically for kiteloops, but as they are all faster they work quite well. They also tend not to be as powerful when looping. The RPM might be the most powerful on this list.
These are just a few kites that we prefer. There are plenty of good options beyond these. If you already have a freeride kite and are new to loops, switching to a crossover kite will not make or break your progress. It will, however, help. If you are a more advanced rider, chances are you've already made the switch to something designed with loops in mind. Either way you go, we encourage you to simply have fun with it. Kiteloops can be scary and, like any kiteboarding trick, they can be frustrating. Take your time and learn to enjoy the process.
-Written and produced by Blake Olsen & Ryan (Rygo) Goloversic.
A Michigan boy through and through (even though he was born in Saudi Arabia), Blake is a youth with a lifetime of experiences and adventures. Not only that, he's passionate about sharing his zest for life with others. He is proficient at many fields, including kiteboarding and acting as concierge to any who simply ask. Looking for an adventure? Well, Blake is your guy. From sailing the Gulf and the Caribbean to backpacking Hawaii and Southeast Asia, he knows his stuff and can make your vacation into an adventure.
Ryan (Rygo) Goloversic
Just a dude from a kite shop testing all the gear one session at a time.
Many people dream of quitting their job, traveling the world and pursuing their passions. Rygo is one of those people who pulled the trigger. A few years into a postal career, he decided to change everything and travel as a kiteboarder, freelance videographer & writer. His mission is to help people and share the stoke. Get out there and kite!
Producer of: Ride with Blake I Sessions I Versus I Destinations I Foil Fridays