Belt harness VS seat harness in kite which one to choose?
The harness is one of the most important elements of your equipment , it is what makes the link between the wing and you . Often overlooked choice when buying equipment the harness often comes last after the kite and the board . Remember that the harness is as important as a good pair of shoes if you plan to run a marathon.
It is easier to see the difference between an average quality harness and a good harness than to see the differences between two kites or two boards.
All the power of your kite is transmitted through your harness . It is therefore more than essential to choose your harness taking into account key elements.
The most important thing is to have your harness perfectly adapted to your morphology and your expectations in terms of sensations and transmission, as well as your practice in order to be able to navigate while combining comfort and freedom.
A badly chosen harness will hurt your back in the long run, if you have opted for a belt-type harness then it will go up in navigation.
In recent years, we have witnessed the emergence of new trends in the harness market such as the hardshell or innovative buckle systems.
Kite harnesses are divided into two main families: seat harnesses and waist harnesses.
1 . Seat harnesses
The so-called “panties” harnesses encompass the buttocks and even have undercut straps. They offer a low pull point for the kite and relieve your lower back. They are the most common in kite schools because they offer a good comfort / control ratio.
The main advantages of the seat harness
- More support for the back,
- More comfort on long sessions in freeride mode
- Does not ascend even with the wing at the zenith
- Absorbs kite traction more easily,
- Less demanding on the abs
The disadvantages of the seat harness
- Freedom of movement of the lower limbs.
- Less natural wing steering.
Who are seat harnesses for?
Seat harnesses are primarily aimed at beginner riders , those who are not physically well prepared , foilers who want to push their foil to the max and riders with sensitive lower back .
2. Belt harnesses
The so-called “belt” harnesses surround the waist without passing between the rider's legs. They are positioned at the level of the lumbar hollow in the lower back. These are the most common to date and the ones we see the most on the spots.
The advantages of the belt harness
- Freedom of movement.
- Easier to put on
- A wide offer
- It can go up and move in navigation
- Less comfort on long freeride sessions and long edges,
- More physically demanding than the seat harness
For who ?
This type of harness is for riders who want freedom of movement.
The latest trends and innovation in the kite harness market.
While 80% of kite harness sales are made today on the waist harness, but the seat harness remains a very good choice for certain profiles (see above).
The brands work a lot the latest trends have revealed technical innovations on the bars with buckles and spreader bar more ergonomic and ever lighter. South African brand AK has just released a carbon fiber buckle. The lens have a light and stiff harness for direct power transmission
There are different interior linings such as memory foam , recently rigid shells have even entered the ranges, which is what gave birth to hardshell harnesses. There are hulls in fiberglass, carbon or in light materials.
The higher the price range, the more rigid the harnesses will be in terms of their structure, they will use pointed materials to avoid pressure points on your back. You have to see it as an investment, if you sail all year round it's a good choice . If you sail in leisure mode on an occasional basis, then a non-hard shell harness.
In Kite, the harness supports most of the wing power and is the transmission vector of this power to the rider. Its role includes both this link between propulsion and the rider and the sensations that must result from it.
Depending on practices and tastes, the harness can prioritize support or freedom of movement. Again, this is quite a personal matter.
Your harness should also be convenient to use. The buckle's quick-attach system must be easy to handle and whether you're in summer or winter.
Budget for a Kite Harness
- Entry-level models start at €150
- For an intermediate model count 150 - 250 €
- For high-end models count 250 to 350€
- For the most exclusive composite models count 500€