Kiteboard Leash Attachment Points – Suicide VS One Line

So you have started kiteboarding, and you know how to use your gear, and your at the beach one day getting ready to go out, and another kiteboarder come up and asks you why you have your kiteleash hooked your leash up suicide style. If you have no idea what that means, then here is the explanation.

Kiteboarders attach a short leash from their body to the control bar of the kite, which prevents the kite from getting away from them if they detach from or let go of the control bar. There are a few different places to attach the leash to the kite control bar, each with its own advantages and disadvantages, but only one is called the suicide attachment, and despite its name it is the most popular attachment point.

It is always safest to attach the kite leash to a single line of the kite, which is designed so that when the control bar is released and the leash is the only thing holding the kite, the control bar slides up toward the kite along the line the leash is attached to, taking all the tension out of the other lines of the kite. Reducing the number of lines with tension of them to one disables power kites like those used in kiteboarding, stopping the kite from flying and reducing its pull to nearly nothing. This is called a single line or one line leash attachment point. Kiteboarding kites use four and sometimes five lines to fly, two outside lines and two or three inside lines. When attaching the kite leash to a single line point it is best to use an inside line, but any of the lines will work.

Although not as safe as attaching the leash to a single line of the control bar, some kiters prefer to attach the leash to the power control line or harness loop, which essentially attaches the leash to both center lines of the kite. This is what is referred to as the suicide leash attachment point. The advantage of this attachment point is that when released onto the leash, a kite attached in this way is merely depowered, but not disabled. The kite may continue to fly, or if it does crash, it is still ready to be relaunched. This is a more convenient leash attachment point for kiters that fly the kite without always being hooked into the power control line and frequently let go of the control bar and release the kite onto the kite leash. The name is derived from the rare instances, mostly with early design model kites that had very little depower, when a kite released onto the leash attached in this way continued to pull very hard and drag the rider for hundreds of yards. Although there is still a chance of this happening with modern kites with leashes hooked up suicide style, it is much less likely to occur.