By Kayla Meyertons
With never-ending summer heat, adventurous Texans have found new, fun ways to cool off in the water using wind power in two “extreme” sports: windsurfing and kiteboarding. No doubt you’ve seen them at the beach or the lake — those daring souls who attach colorful sails and kites to boards so they can skim across the water and even soar above it.
In windsurfing (also called sailboarding), there is a sail attached to your board so you can glide across the waves like a sailboat. Take the challenge of surfing, add a lot of power and speed, and hang on so you don’t wipe out.
In kiteboarding, your feet are attached to the board (like a snowboard), and the sail is attached to your body by a harness. When kiteboarding, the wind can lift you many feet into the air. “Kiteboarding” is more widely used in the U.S., while the term “kitesurfing” is used commonly outside the U.S.
With so many lakes and a perfect stretch of surfing coastline from Galveston to South Padre Island, Texas has lots of places to take lessons and practice. Add a wetsuit and you can play all year long.
Where to Go
Coastal, either sport
• South Padre Island
• Corpus Christi
• Port Aransas
• Texas City
• Bob Wentz Windy Point Park, Lake Travis
• Canyon Lake
• Lake Buchanan
• Houston Kiteboarding Center
• Austin Third Coast Kitesurfing
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