Kiteboarding in the Florida Keys is some of the best flat-water riding in the entire country. Through Islamorada, Marathon and Key West, the small chain of islands are connected with an intertwining web of sandbars and ‘flats,’ the knee deep playgrounds for Florida Keys kiteboarders. The consistent wind and shallow, clear, warm water is ideal for learning to kiteboard, whether its your first kiteboarding lesson or that last guided session you need to make you an independent rider.
Our kiteboarding season here in Islamorada consists of about 7 months, October through May, with the best and most consistent wind in the spring months. See “Florida Keys Kite Beaches” section at the bottom of this page for details on the best launches in any given wind direction if you’re already and independent kiter.
oTHErside’s Kiteboarding Lessons & Packages:
Otherside’s kiteboarding instructors are PASA and/or IKO certified, licensed and insured. With more than 10 years of teaching kiteboarding for a living EACH, they are some of the most qualified instructors on the planet. These guys live, eat, and dream kiteboarding. If you’ve had lesson elsewhere and have been less than satisfied, try oTHErside, where the grass is greener. Do your homework before you book with other schools, learning to kite is not something you want a bargain instructor for!
Otherside is pleased to offer our professional kite services out of two locations serving the Middle and Upper Keys. Choose from our Islamorada location based out of the PostCard Inn MM84, or our Marathon location based out of Hawks Cay Resort MM61. Sessions run daily (weather dependent) from 9am-12pm, and 1pm-4pm. Most of the time, we use our kiteboarding specific pontoon boats to access one of the offshore sandbars where we enjoy crowdless, shallow water riding conditions.
BEGINNER COURSE - Wind theory, wind-window, set-up, safety, launching, landing, kite control, water relaunch, self-rescue, board skills. $329 for one-on-one instruction. Add a second person for $100. For those students who are coming into kiteboarding with limited board skills, our instructors highly suggest a Cable For Kite session at Keys Cable Park
PRIVATE INTERMEDIATE/ADVANCED - What do you need to work on? Private instruction to pick up where you left off. $329
SITTER SESSION – For intermediate riders that just need a few pointers. Riders must be able to stay upwind to qualify for this option. This is not a private lesson. It can be a downwinder, or a stationary session in which your instructor will be kiting with you. Their objective is to ‘keep an eye’- To be there if help is needed, act as a guide, or offer tips to enhance your riding experience. Our gear- $175. Your gear- $129. Disclaimer: If a sitter session turns into a lesson, based on the instructors discretion and their comfort level with your kiteboarding skills, the full $329 lesson rate will be applicable.
BOAT TRIP - There are those days when we get wind out of the north or west when conditions on the Oceanside are less than favorable, or impossible. There is very little public water access to the Bayside of the Florida Keys, so we’ll take one of oTHErside’s kite-specific pontoon boats to get you out. We’ll take you to our secret spot dubbed ‘The Otherside’ (bayside) which is a sick sandbar right offshore. This option is for self-sufficient, up-wind riders only! If anyone needs a downwind rescue because of pilot error, or inexperience, a $100 fee will apply. Boat trip typically run 9am and 1pm. Call in advance to reserve your spot. We require a minimum of two riders for the boat to leave the dock. $65
PRO COACH SESSION - oTHErside is fortunate enough to work with some of the best professional kiteboarders in the world. When you are ready to take your skills to the next level, these guys are available for premium instruction. Check out our kite team here, book with your favorite pro, and walk away with much more than just an autograph.
CABLE FOR KITE, a coached cable session - Specifically for board skills. oTHErside is the very first kite school in the world to operate their own cable park as a kiteboarding training facility. Our two-tower systems simulate kiteboarding better than anything else. Its has created an opportunity for kiteboarding students to practice board skills in a controlled environment with the same upward lift that is generated by the pull of a kite. Your coach can take you through basic beginner kite board skills including water starts, riding switch, heelside, toeside, upwind carving, and transitions, all the way through load and pop jumps and advanced inverts. A session at Keys Cable is not mandatory, but highly recommended for new kiteboarders coming into the sport with little to no board-riding experience. ($180, 1.5 hours, up to two people)
CANCELLATION POLICY - When booking a kiteboarding lesson, or to reserve a spot on a boat trip, credit card info will be taken as a security deposit. The card will not be charged until after the lesson, or not at all if you choose to pay cash. In the event that there is no wind, or unfavorable conditions and oTHErside cancels the booking, no fee will be charged. All other reservations must be cancelled 24hrs in advanced. No-show reservations will be charged in full, as our instructor have allocated their time, and missed an opportunity to teach another student. Lessons cancelled with less than one days notice will be charged 1/2 off the appropriate lesson fee.