This is a quick run down on some of the foil trainer kites we like:
This is a cheap and cheerful kite that you can give to the kids, without being precious with it. It flies on two 25m lines with colour coded wrist straps. The simple design isn't particularly efficient or powerful. You won't get much in the way of pull from it and it's safe for kids to fly on their own in lighter wind, although we would suggest that you are with them all the time. This is too small for any traction based activities and doesn't offer a great deal to adults looking for a kitesurf trainer.
Ozone make paragliders alongside their kites and this really shows in the quality and design effort that has gone into the Imp. Its twice the price of the HQ Symphony for the same size kite, but you can see why. The kite has a much more refined aerofoil shape and the way it flies is so much more positive. It flies forward right to the edge of the window and stays stable there. The reaction to steering input is immediate and its speed around the window is remarkable. As the wind speed increases this kite starts to generate a pull as it flies that will bring a smile to anyones face.
Stepping up to the bigger 2m Imp from a smaller kite, you will notice the pull is becoming a bit stronger and more noticable. The slightly longer lines and larger size make the kite a little slower than the 1.3, I would consider this to be the right size for anyone looking to get a trainer kite for kitesurfing. If you don't have a kite flying background any time you spend with the trainer kite will pay you back when you try on the water. The Imps have padded wrist straps, which are fine for recreational flying, but you might consider a bar if you want to use this as a kitesurf trainer.
Ozone Imp 2.5m:
As for the 2m Imp, but slightly steadier and with a bit more pull in lighter wind. Actually it is amazing how little wind you need to fly the Ozone foil kites, about 5mph is all you need to keep one in the air. The 2.5m Imp can be used for kite longboarding, although this is easier if you use a bar rather than the wrist straps. Ozone don't recommend the Imp for use in any more than 20 knots, so it won't work as a high wind buggy or landboard kite.
Ozone Ignition 2.5m:
This is by far the best kitesurf trainer kite we've seen. It comes with a bar and 18m lines that have a 200kg breaking strain. The kite flies on the lines attached to the ends of the bar but unlike the two line Imps, the Ignition has a third line which goes to the back or trailing edge of the kite. This extra line passes through a loop on the bar and attaches as a wrist leash. This allows the pilot to completely let go of the bar and have the kite come down to the ground on the safety line. This system is so effective that the kite can be stopped mid dive, just by letting go! As a kite instructor this is a great reaction for students to learn before they move onto the water.
The turning speed on the Ignition is much more moderate (closer to a kitesurf kite) than the Imp and it's also steadier accross the window, giving a smooth predictable pull and backing off nicely at the edge of the window. The stability from luffing or overflying in gusty conditions is spot on, so it's good for flying inland at the park.
If you have any questions about kites, kitesurfing or getting some lessons give us a call and one of or friendly team will help you out.