KiteChix Langebaan - Paula Novotna
Paula Novotna was one of the many international riders cruising the desirable winter location of Cape Town, but this year she was on a mission; to gather women from around the city for a laid back, windy weekend on the water, all in the name of fun, community and progression.
It’s always uplifting to see our riders give back to the kite scene worldwide, so we caught up with Paula to hear about why and how the KiteChix event came about.
What was the aim of the event?
I’m a true believer that kiteboardeing is a sport for all. As a female rider, I feel I can be proactive in bringing women together. In Cape Town, my aim was provide something fun for the local girls scene. KiteChix was intended for all levels and Langebaan was the best location to encourage and inspire. I teamed up with local North Kiteboarding rider Jenna Velter for the weekend, to share our vision and experience on how to become a better kitesurfing both in and out of the water.
What was the format?
We kicked off the days with yoga , showing how it can be used as a warm up before a session on the water. There was a lot of wind so all the girls were enjoying themselves out there, trying to jump higher or try that new back / front roll. It was a great mixture with some just taking their first steps or looking to stay upwind. We also included a downwinder for everyone which really upped the stoke, as well as a Queen of the Air comp with PIQ.
Why Langebaan and who was involved?
Langebaan is one of the closest spots to Cape Town with flat water and lighter conditions for freestyle and freeriding. The famous Blouberg beach in Cape Town can get pretty big waves and the wind can be strong, so Langebaan was a great choice. We were based out of Windtown hotel which is right on the kite spot. The vibe, food and accommodation is just great. Windtown Kite School also helped us to get those who were complete beginners out on the water. The new North Kiteboarding distributors from the Brand Stable shop in Cape Town provided us with a huge range of the newest 2018 gear for all the girls to try. The support was epic.
How did the smaller, last minute event work out?
I was very late with planning, but together with Windtown and Andrew from North Kiteboarding South Africa we managed to pull it together. We put it out there and the response was great. The girls came and left with big smiles, along with ‘She Kites’ t-shirts.
Tell us about the Social Media competition you ran.
We decided to run a social media competition on Instagram to win a North Soleil board. All the girls got involved, taking creative photos and writing down inspiring captions. The theme was, why do you kitesurf? Why do you want learn kitesurfing? What do you like most about kitesurfing? The photos were great and the captions were event better. There was only one winner, Candice Lawrence. She really touched my heart with what she wrote in her post. In my life I always set goals and I have a lot of dreams. Candice has set a goal to learn kitesurfing and to conquer her fear. Also to inspire other women from her community to set goals no matter how big or small they are and to strive to achieve them. To be the best version of yourself and to step out. Thanks Candice!
How is the local kite scene growing in CPT?
Kitesurfing in SA is growing fast. More girls are getting into wave riding which I find awesome. I came to CPT for the first time 5 years ago and since then there are way more girls on the water. Come on girls, go get it!
What was the response for the event?
I think the most important thing was that we all enjoyed it. The girls were stoked. They were all inspired by each other and trying new tricks on the water. With good wind and good vibes what’s not to love. Langebaan is very chilled place, I always feel like I am on holiday getaway from Cape Town. If you haven’t been come next year, we’ll be running KiteChix again!
Photo Credit: Svetlana Romanstova