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Visual Cues - Or Lack Thereof


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#1 SkyPuppet

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 11:58 AM

Ahhh, what a fantastic day to fly:
Untitled.jpg
Anyways, my girlfriend was out flying with me today :blue_wink:. She kindly :kid_brooding: pointed out that my bicycle spins were sloppy when I was flying with nothing but sky behind the Rev. She also lovingly :kid_brooding: told me that my side slides were flying at angles and horizontal flight in general had too much, um, verticalness to it, when I had no visual cues to help me align the Rev up to. I bravely ;) kept my mouth shut, after all, she had never flown a sport kite until she met me.
She was absolutely correct. :blushing:
As soon as I flew low enough to line up to a light pole, tree, fence, or to the horizon, I was keeping much straighter horizontal slides, and my bicycle spins were much tighter with less drift in any direction.
Unfortunately, Las Vegas is blessed with plenty of days that feature zero clouds in the sky. Does anyone have a tip for keeping the flying clean when you have no visual cues to align to?
Conversely, does anyone have a favorite visual cue or cues they like to use when flying?

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#2 stroke survivor

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 05:31 PM

Usually the ground or horizon work for me!! That's if the wind is clean enough, then again any wind presents it's own challenges!!! Posted Image Trees, houses, fences!! Anything that gives you a reference to work from, will fill the need!! Posted Image

wayne from portland
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#3 Baloo

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 10:43 PM

Life is just too short. My spins are sloppy, slides are rubbish, and I still crash Once in a while.

Do I enjoy it, YES I DO. Do I ever think I will be as good as JB, NO I DONT.

But then I suppose you are only showing the nature of the Human Animal, to strive to be better.

Good luck, practic, practice, practice. But dont forget to enjoy.

#4 SkyPuppet

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Posted 13 June 2011 - 07:33 AM

Life is just too short. My spins are sloppy, slides are rubbish, and I still crash Once in a while.

Do I enjoy it, YES I DO. Do I ever think I will be as good as JB, NO I DONT.

But then I suppose you are only showing the nature of the Human Animal, to strive to be better.

Good luck, practic, practice, practice. But dont forget to enjoy.


Fortunately for me I enjoy the practicing.
I'm reminded of a Rolling Stones song here:
"Ti-iiii-iiii-iiime is on my side, yes it is!"
I'm only 34, got plenty of Rev flying ahead of me. Plenty of time to practice. And develop muscle memory. Plenty of time to strive for excellence.
I'm not interested in trying to be as good as JB, he's got 18 years of flying experience on me, and I have no desire to fly competitively (unless the cash prizes become huge). But I'm totally consumed with doing the best I can. And I enjoy that too ;)

Cheers!

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#5 hyzakite

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Posted 13 June 2011 - 09:34 AM

When there is no visual cues, hand her the credit card for a shopping trip to the mall on the otherside of townPosted Image just kiddin.

#6 SkyPuppet

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Posted 13 June 2011 - 11:04 AM

When there is no visual cues, hand her the credit card for a shopping trip to the mall on the otherside of townPosted Image just kiddin.


:lol: LOL seriously. She was in rare form the other day. I said she lovingly and kindly pointed out my sloppy flying, but this is almost verbatim how it went:

Her: "Babe! That was the ugliest spin you've done in awhile. What's your problem today?"
Me: "Huh? Wasn't that bad, was it?"
"Were you trying to bicycle there? In one place right? That one looked like you're flying drunk."
"It was close en......."
"And that side slide right there - you sure you got both shoes on? Haha"
"You're killing me! I can't tell there's no clouds to spin against."
"Yeah yeah. Well, ok but from back here it doesn't look sharp."

Blah blah etc. We both agreed that once we flew closer to the ground our flying was cleaner.
Looks like practicing with someone who can point it out is going to be the cure. On my own I can't seem to see when my flying get sloppy high up in the sky.

Thanks for the help guys! :)

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#7 --Pete

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Posted 13 June 2011 - 01:48 PM

I think you hit it dead-nuts: when you fly alone, you tend to get sloppy.

Even with no clues, I bet you tighten up your flying if you have an observer, especially if the observer knows what the maneuvers should look like.
--Pete
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#8 Kitelife

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 09:18 AM

My favorite frame of reference is the GROUND...

Visual cues are great, but nothing like hitting the ground to make you sharpen up. :)

John Barresi

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#9 stroke survivor

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 09:23 AM

My favorite frame of reference is the GROUND...

Visual cues are great, but nothing like hitting the ground to make you sharpen up. :)


ROFL!!!! Posted Image By the way, when was the last time you hit the ground unintentionally?? Posted Image

wayne from portland
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#10 monkey

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 09:38 AM

In Vanier Park, there's a great, massive flag pole that stands pretty much directly downwind of the best, from the west, winds. Works great for lining things up!
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#11 SkyPuppet

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 12:43 PM

Flew at the park with stadium lights today! :)
Perfectly tall. Even on the 120's. Perfect for lining up bicycle spins high up in the window. Now I can see the drift! Spent a good amount of time practicing them today. A good bicycle spin done high up feels just different enough than one done lower in the power window. Brake feels more sensitive, and have to try even harder for forward acceleration.
Side slides were cleaner too. I was aligning to the joints between the columns. Again, way up in the air, brake input was more sensitive.
I think I will have an easier time developing the muscle memory for the high-up bicycle. I keep using too much brake when doing a high-up inverted slide, and wind up in more of a glide, which adds, um, verticalness to my slide. I need less muscle memory here lol.
Practice, practice, practice........... :)

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#12 Felix Mottram

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 12:49 PM

<snip>
Practice, practice, practice........... :)


Sorry but Fly/Enjoy, Fly/Enjoy, Fly/Enjoy should be the mantra. It should /not/ be seen as a <deleted> chore...

Thanks

Felix

#13 Kitelife

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 01:04 PM

Different tunes for different loons. :)

Myself, I really LOVE "practice"... Tuning, fine-tuning, repeating, variations, etc.

Not all the time, but probably 50/50... I truly enjoy it just as much as "fly/enjoy".

Ill go with the fly/practice/enjoy/share mantra myself... I think all 4 are necessary to really excel. :)

John Barresi

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#14 Felix Mottram

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 01:24 PM

Different tunes for different loons. :)

Myself, I really LOVE "practice"... Tuning, fine-tuning, repeating, variations, etc.

Not all the time, but probably 50/50... I truly enjoy it just as much as "fly/enjoy".

Ill go with the fly/practice/enjoy/share mantra myself... I think all 4 are necessary to really excel. :)


OK I'll give you Piano Scales... but it is still /not/ a chore...

<grins>

share... no question!

Felix

#15 AldenMiler

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 01:53 PM

When there is no visual cues, hand her the credit card for a shopping trip to the mall on the otherside of townPosted Image just kiddin.


Came in late to this one, this would have been my advice except keep the credit card to yourself! :kid_devlish:

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#16 Simon

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 02:16 PM

BTW Only use the ground as a que if its level...




I used to fly on Epsom Downs (Home of the Derby) and if you do a horizontal ground pass the wrong way you start 10 feet above ground and end up hitting the ground !!!




As for shapes in the sky, don't forget your view will be different than anyone else's.




So if setting up for an audience if they are not directly behind you they will see a weird shape.




Competition judging is /was the same if you fly a square do you fly a square or the shape that looks like a square to the judges ???




So that should give you a few excuses as to why she see's it differently to you :o)

Oh and if you do hit the ground just repeatit three times and she'll think you meant to do it !!


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#17 HedgeWarden

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 06:12 PM

I've started flying a lot of goofy stuff just above the ground. I crash a lot, but I also find I am quickly gaining confidence and skill.

That is a good place to practice bicycle turns and lots of other "snap-and-recover" stuff. Hard to explain, but I "jazz" a lot while I am not practicing but am trying to improve my muscle memory and connectedness with the kite. From that, I have found several maneuvers that I can perform to a ragged degree - like side-slide circles (well, still decreasing spirals - but improving!) The idea is, "jazzing" around is not quite practice, but it can lead to ideas to practice, and does really improve reaction time and connectedness to the kite (for me). And the ground is a good reference for practice. When you take it higher - well I guess the ground practice will have to provide you with the basic skills.

As for inverted side slides, the dunes provide an horizon above the beach level. I don't care if it is level, as long as I can maintain a visual distance above the dune line. Of course, you will have to come down to our neck of the woods to fiddle with dunes and level beach panoramas. :kid_devlish:

Umm - that's my suggestions. Next year I hope you will instruct me. :kid_smartass:
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#18 SkyPuppet

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 07:45 PM

Sorry but Fly/Enjoy, Fly/Enjoy, Fly/Enjoy should be the mantra. It should /not/ be seen as a <deleted> chore...

Thanks

Felix


Aw man.... You gave me more work to do :)
Now, I have to practice not practicing, and I have to practice not doing chores :lol: and I have to practice a new mantra :P
J/k Felix ;) I understand your concern. Please, don't fret, I'm having more fun than I've ever had since I firsted started sport kiting. Its never a chore.
I didn't know the word "practice" had such negative connotations!

Different tunes for different loons. :)

Myself, I really LOVE "practice"... Tuning, fine-tuning, repeating, variations, etc.

Not all the time, but probably 50/50... I truly enjoy it just as much as "fly/enjoy".

Ill go with the fly/practice/enjoy/share mantra myself... I think all 4 are necessary to really excel. :)


I really like "different tunes for different loons". I'm going to start using that immediately ;)
I'm about 50/50 practice as well. Fly/freestyle on my way between practicing different skills!
I like the sound of either mantra - though maybe JB's should read fly/enjoy/practice/share :)

<snip> So that should give you a few excuses as to why she see's it differently to you :o)

Oh and if you do hit the ground just repeatit three times and she'll think you meant to do it !! <snip>


:lol: Thanks for the ideas! However, this is exactly what she will reply: "Excuses are tools of incompetence. Those who specialize in them seldom achieve anything." I should have never taught her that one lol.

<snip> As for inverted side slides, the dunes provide an horizon above the beach level. I don't care if it is level, as long as I can maintain a visual distance above the dune line. Of course, you will have to come down to our neck of the woods to fiddle with dunes and level beach panoramas. :kid_devlish:<snip>


:) Yes, yes I will. I plan on someday being able to brag that I kited in every state!

Thanks for the suggestions everyone! :)

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#19 Jim Foster

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 08:10 PM

Fly with someone and you always have a point of reference.

You may think that you are still in the air, but get someone else next to you and you'll find out for sure.

At our home field here in Walnut Grove, CA, there is a 2000 foot high TV transmission tower which is usually directly down wind of our nice Delta Breezes. The field is only 1/4 mile from the base of that tower.
Fly together! Share the joy, Share the fun




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