Take a les­son with Beth or sim­ply watch in awe!

Tropical Traveller Magazine - - ISLANDSPORTS -

Not ev­ery wa­ter sport is as en­joy­able for spec­ta­tors on the beach as it is for par­tic­i­pants on the wa­ter, but kitesurf­ing is one spec­ta­cle that thrills from all di­rec­tions. If you have ever watched a lone dude jumping and som­er­sault­ing by the light of the full moon, you'll know what I mean - it re­ally is breathtaking to see. Saint Lu­cia has sev­eral cen­tres where you can watch the leap­ing and twirling of ex­perts or start off with safe and pro­fes­sional lessons in this fast- grow­ing ad­ven­ture sport.

Beth Ly­goe is the owner of Kitesurf­ing St Lu­cia at Cas En Bas Beach and she has been kitesurf­ing and teach­ing as an IKO Level 2 in­struc­tor since 2001. De­spite be­ing an ac­com­plished sailor and Saint Lu­cia's 2012 Olympian in Women’s Laser Ra­dial, kitesurf­ing is Beth’s pas­sion, and it won’t take you long to re­alise that.

“( When I was a kid) I sailed Laser Ra­dial dinghies, and raced in re­gat­tas in the UK and around the world. My first job out of school was as a wa­ter­sports in­struc­tor - teach­ing Sail­ing, Wind­surf­ing, Yacht­ing, Kayak­ing and Powerboating, as well as coach­ing ad­vanced sail­ing clin­ics. But then the ex­cite­ment of kitesurf­ing took over. I learnt to kitesurf on the Isle of Wight in Eng­land and then I left to travel and kitesurf. In the past few years I have lived and taught in Aus­tralia, Do­mini­can Repub­lic, Hawaii, Saint Lu­cia and all around the Caribbean. Kitesurf­ing has given me so much en­joy­ment over the past few years, I want to share it with peo­ple and show them how to learn this amaz­ing sport."

Learn­ing to kitesurf in a re­laxed at­mos­phere is im­por­tant, and there is nowhere bet­ter than a warm beau­ti­ful Caribbean beach. On Beth's web­site she ex­plains that Saint Lu­cia has almost per­fect con­di­tions due to our steady con­sis­tent tradewinds of be­tween 10 to 30 knots through the long Novem­ber to Au­gust sea­son, and be­cause the wind blows all day and all night ( hence the moon­lit rider - but only for the ex­perts!).

Wikipedia ex­plains: "Kitesurf­ing or kite­board­ing is a sur­face wa­ter sport com­bin­ing as­pects of wake­board­ing, wind­surf­ing, surf­ing, paraglid­ing, and gym­nas­tics into one ex­treme sport. A kitesurfer or kite­boarder har­nesses the power of the wind with a large con­trol­lable power kite to be pro­pelled across the wa­ter on a kite­board sim­i­lar to a wake­board or a small surf­board, with or with­out foot- straps or bind­ings."

Like ev­ery board- based ex­ploit, a lit­tle prac­tice is needed to get up and surf­ing, but Beth has it cov­ered, and all the equip­ment too. Whether you are a be­gin­ner or al­ready know how to kitesurf, Kitesurf­ing St Lu­cia has lessons to suit. You can learn to fly a power kite and body drag in the 2 hour Dis­cover Kitesurf­ing ses­sion, or you can tweak your tech­nique on one of Saint Lu­cia's most beau­ti­ful east cost bays.

Are you learn­ing to get up on a board? Is go­ing up­wind a prob­lem? Want to learn to gybe? Can’t land your jumps? Do you have prob­lems wa­ter re­launch­ing? Want to learn ad­vanced tricks? No wor­ries, a few pri­vate lessons with Beth will have you pol­ished up and join­ing in with the pas­sion­ate kitesurf­ing crowd that takes on the bay be­fore hang­ing out at the beach.

Beth Ly­goe's Kitesurf­ing St Lu­cia is based on Cas en Bas beach to­wards the North­ern tip of the is­land, ac­ces­si­ble via Cap Es­tate; the lo­ca­tion is near all of the main ho­tels and restau­rants in St Lu­cia, but on a lo­cal un­spoiled Caribbean beach away from the main tourist ar­eas.

Kitesurf­ing Lingo

Air time: the amount of time spent in the air while jumping. Five to ten seconds is not un­usual. Body drag­ging: be­ing pulled through the wa­ter with­out stand­ing on a board. This is an early step in the learn­ing process, and is rec­om­mended be­fore try­ing the board after fly­ing a trainer kite. Down­wind: the di­rec­tion the wind is blow­ing to­wards; to leeward. When a rider is fac­ing down­wind the wind is at their back. Up­wind: the di­rec­tion from which the wind is blow­ing; wind­ward; into the wind. Gybe: change di­rec­tion by turn­ing down­wind and then con­tin­u­ing to turn un­til you are go­ing in the other di­rec­tion.

Beth Ly­goe in her favourite pur­suit! Beth re­cently took 3rd Place in a Latin Amer­i­can & Caribbean

com­pe­ti­tion.

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