Upright and Inverted Slides

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Focusing on upright and inverted slides today.

A key skill when flying quads are upright and inverted slides. When you have that skill down, you’ll have much more fun flying. At least I think so and today I focused on this.

First the upright slide. I find it much easier than the inverted one. Launch the kite and fly it up to between 30 and 40%, stop and hover. I then try to stabilize the kite in that hover position before I start the slide. In good winds only subtle input is required.

When feeling comfortable I initiate the slide – let’s say to the left – by slightly move my right hand somewhat forwards while keeping my left hand still. This makes the kite angle the wind differently and when done correctly, the kite starts to slide to the left.

Inverted hover
Inverted hover

I focus on a steady speed and a straight line without wobbling. …and iy’s harder than it sounds! 😉

After sliding some distance I stop the slide by returning my right hand to a neutral position. The kite should now hover in the air. I change direction of the slide – now to the right – by slightly move my left hand forward while keeping my right one in a neutral position. The kites now starts sliding to the right.

I practice going in both directions many times still focusing on constant speed and straight lines.

Then there is the inverted slide. I’ve been struggling with this for a long time. I have had trouble both with keeping the kite steady in the starting position, an inverted hover and doing slides of somewhat quality.

But today I cracked it!

By working with my hands and handles in an “A-frame position” kind of “relaxing” on the line and being very alert to any changes to the wind adjusting the hover with minimal input.

Then I figured out a very easy (?) way to slide the kite!

From a stable inverted hover I just moved my left hand slightly forward and to the left and … VOILA! the kite started to slide ti the left!

The same but opposite (!) to slide to the right. I kept the left hand in a neutral position while moving my right one carefully forward and a little to the right. No worries, the kite slides to the right!

Just like in the video below!

3 thoughts on “Upright and Inverted Slides”

  1. I see a very rapid progress in the last weeks. Except for jump-starting with a few fancy things (playing with object, single hand flying and kite swimming) you seem to build solid from the ground. First general feel, then a flying with intent square/landing exercise and now normal/inverted hover practice while not forgetting about the hand position.

    To easier understand how to counteract the kites tendency to turn (or to wobble when suddenly changing slide direction) when pulling one of the handles closer during a slide, one can try to see how quickly one can side slide by creating a large offset between the hands (or fly along the LE in any direction). This will force one to compensate with the non driving trailing hand and make it evident how the compensation should be performed. Another help for the slides is to use a bit stiffer LE – much flex will make the side slide difficult (it will strive to turn along the curvature of the LE).

    I thought I did unusually much kiting the last weekend (had favorable winds so I did not need to do much traveling): 1.5h on Friday evening, 1h on Saturday and 1.5h on Sunday (and doing garden work during much of the remaining weekend time gave very much fresh air b.t.w.) – normally I aim to do kiting one time per week minimum. If one should have have a chance to match the pace of your progress, you offer very little rest! Also I forgot completely to think about any hand position during my latest session. Thank you for offering an almost local (well Nordic then) “kiting-in-a-non-kiter-vacuum and technique reminder” QLKing service! To mirror and compare kiting activities illuminates details of flying, becomes a dry run rehearsal/reminder and serve as a spur for further practice/improvement. Keep the good work coming!!!

    1. “…I see a very rapid progress in the last weeks. Except for jump-starting with a few fancy things (playing with object, single hand flying and kite swimming) you seem to build solid from the ground. First general feel, then a flying with intent square/landing exercise and now normal/inverted hover practice while not forgetting about the hand position….”

      Thank you Christian!
      Yes, I can feel it myself too. I’d like to think that quantity flying adds to the skills. You kind of become good at things you do often/a lot and I try to put in quite some time flying these days. …and like I mentioned, I can feel my skills are improving.

      I also (always) try to include some … fun flying every time i go flying. You know, like playing with objects, “flying” in water and what not. (Working on a DIY dogstake thingy as well 😉 )

      Why?

      For fun, for variation, for improving, for experimenting, for pushing the envelope, ’cause if you don’t break anything, you don’t try hard enough! 😉

      /Sven

  2. John Barresi also commented to the video on Youtube…

    “… Goal in the inverted slides is to pick that trailing wing up so it’s level with the leading wing (straight leading edge), then pull your leading wing a little less, and speed will increase. ;) …”

    To be tried out the next time on the field! 🙂

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