According to surfertoday.com, the origins of kite surfing date to 1984, when brothers Dominique and Bruno Legaignoux designed the first "dual line kite propulsor." It wasn't until the 1990s, however, that kites designed for kite surfing hit the market on a bigger scale and quickly popularized the sport.
Where To Kite Surf
Combine wind, a large body of water and access to an instructor, and you've got the beginnings of a great kite-surfing location. Kitesurfingnow.com suggests Maui, Hawaii; Puerto Rico; Hua Hin, Thailand; and Cape Town, South Africa, as top-notch kite-surfing places. But a quick Internet search for windsurfing locations or kite-surfing schools near you will yield additional and perhaps more accessible kite-surfing locations.
Basic kite-surfing equipment includes: a kite board; a kite-surfing kite; a kite-control device (a two- or four-line control bar and a set of four-line handles); and accessories (safety-release system, harness, wet suit, life jacket, helmet, etc.).
Learning how to maneuver a kite in extreme wind conditions (less than 5 knots or more than 30 knots) can be difficult, and it takes time and dedication to learn how to perform tasks such as kite surfing upwind or relaunching a kite from the water.
Because of the variable nature of wind and the technical aspects of the sport, kite surfing is an extreme and sometimes dangerous sport, and should be approached with caution and preparation. Take lessons from a professional before kite surfing on your own.