Kite flying is an interesting pastime and one that is mostly enjoyed purely as a hobby rather than for competition, however, it’s quite common to wonder whether it can also be enjoyed as a sport.
In fact, kite flying does have competitive elements depending on how you judge your kite flying ability compared to someone else’s, though, most kite flying is done for display purposes (as a joint effort), rather than trying to beat someone else.
It’s kind of like yo-yoing in that regard; most of the displays and tricks are judged by interpretation rather than having an obvious physical metric to go by e.g. someone being able to run faster or lift more weight.
So, is kite flying a hobby or a sport then?
Kite flying can definitely be enjoyed as a sport, and in case you didn’t know there’s a niche area of kite flying called sport kite which has competitive show elements that can be judged by experts.
In fact, many of the official competitions are hosted nationally, and even internationally throughout the year all across the world that you can enter into.
It goes under the name of STACK (Sport Team and Competitive Kiting) and the world championship is hosted twice a year meaning you have two opportunities every year to show off your kite flying skills.
We would rank competitive kite flying up there with the likes of synchronized swimming or figure skating in the sense that it’s judged mainly on the display and control exercised by the flyer rather than any physical feats being performed.
That doesn’t mean it’s less of a sport than anything else, and in fact, it means you have to be far more inventive every year with what you come up with to help you stand out from the crowd.
How fast do winds need to be to fly a kite?
There’s no conclusive answer for this question as it depends on the weight of the kite and its aerodynamic design.
With that said, if you can feel a breeze you should be able to fly the large majority of kites without too much trouble.
Stunt kites are far more aerodynamic and thus need much less wind for flying effectively where you’ll be able to perform a range of stunts or tricks.
Here’s a great video about stunt kites that explain the technique needed to fly it safely and how to judge the wind appropriately:
Can kite flying be dangerous?
Kite flying can be dangerous if not given the right precautions.
Always make sure you’re flying in pre-approved areas and make sure you check in with any local regulations to avoid breaking the law for flying your kite.
In most countries there are limitations on how high you can fly your kite including where you’re allowed to fly them — you may even need a permit.
Some instances of electrocution have been heard of when flying kites with metal-lined wires meaning you’ll need to be cautious about overhead powerlines too.
Lastly, if you’re not skilled at kite flying you can easily cause accidents or injuries to other people so make sure you practice in an open space without anyone around.
Kite flying can be both a hobby and a sport (stunt kite/sport kite) making it highly versatile and scalable in terms of progression.
You can get involved in displays all over the world or can enjoy it for your own personal benefit, not to mention all the exercise you’re getting just for partaking in the activity.
With that said, we recommend taking caution when flying your kite and make sure you’re not breaking the law by getting in contact with your local government office for rules or regulations.
As always, if you found our article informative or helpful then make sure to check out the rest of our site for hobbies and pastimes you can get involved in.