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Iron Man Iron man downwinder Rancho do Peixe

Kiting – it’s a woman’s thing

On March 19, 2018   |   By

More and more woman are taking up kiteboarding and doing epic downwinders!


Surfin Sem Fim - Kiting is a women's thing!


Words: Luciana Annunziata

There are more and more women entering into the world of kiteboarding. We are learning, falling, getting back up, doing downwinders, and charging waves. We are in Australia, Cape Verde, and Cear. Were everywhere and, if we stop showing up, its because we stopped believing in ourselves.

Last year a group of women who didnt yet know each other converged at Rancho do Peixe in Prea. They underlined the variety of background from which women are now entering this sport. At first they were strangers but they soon began to interact. They discussed the long downwind journeys that Surfin Sem Fim take along the coast of Cear and some of them commented that these challenges seemed almost too ambitious for them.

Among the group was athlete, Marcela Witt, whod previously done the SSF Iron Man route. She overheard the other girls comments and an idea was born. Lets do our own downwind she said. And it was on.


Surfin Sem Fim - Kiting is a women's thing!


The crew at Surfin Sem Fim were soon involved and then there were seven women, including mother and daughter duo Lu and Eliana, all shredding the Jeri sunset.

Jalila Paulino one of the leaders of Surfin Sem Fim would join them. Organiser, PR expert and a passionate kiter, she spent four years working in a kite club in Rio, organising kite events, surfing waves and telling their stories. However, it was only after she moved to Jericoacoara that Jalila bought her own kiteboard and actually took the sport up herself. Last year she was riding in the waves of Pacasamayo and Cape Verde – a huge progression.


Surfin Sem Fim - Kiting is a women's thing!


Also taking part was Vanessa Chastinet, a team member at Rancho do Kite, and a pioneer of the sport in Cear. When she moved there and opened the school in 2006, they only had 8 kites and the predominant equipment was the dreaded 4m C-kite. Today we are one of the largest schools in the world, and equipment has evolved a lot, with more security. More and more women are entering the water and about 45% of our clients are now women!


Surfin Sem Fim - Kiting is a women's thing!


Some women feel they could never undertake something like a multi-day downwind trip. Listen to Milla Ferreira though, a kitewave champion who has taken part in SSF downwinders in the past including the 270 km Delta Poldros route. You know when youre so happy to be doing something and thrilled about it at the same time? Everyone wants to hug everyone, congratulate them and say theyre together! In that group, everyone started out one way and ended with a huge evolution in their abilities.



Downwinders like these are for every female kiter and every woman has her own rhythm. In Julia Rudges case, she was already able to complete the SSF Classic Route with less than three years of kiting under her belt (and she lives in So Paulo, far from the sea).

Analice Diniz, the photographer for the longest SSF routes, wasnt on the water herself but she crossed three states Cear, Piau and Maranho – when covering the adventure and she knows how transformative a process these downwinders can be. Its that kind of experience thats so hard to explain, one has to experience it themselves. The smell of the sea, smiles every day, and the fatigue and happiness that only an expedition can bring.

There are many other female kiters doing incredible things too. Kiting was made for us! It is a sport in which your body must communicate with the sea and the wind is constantly passing through the subtle movements of the bar. It is a sport of sensitivity.


Surfin Sem Fim - Kiting is a women's thing!


You can use your strength, of course, and you can do tricks and take on the wave (what woman doesnt love a challenge?) but all you really need is the courage to go into the water and practice. If you do that then any kiting adventure will one day be open to you.

Who knows, maybe one day soon well have an Iron Woman route.


Find out more about the Surfin Sem Fim downwinders at

The post Kiting – it’s a woman’s thing appeared first on Kiteworld Magazine | The original international kitesurfing magazine.