# How Kitesurfing Works

## Physics of Kitesurfing

To understand the physics of kitesurfing, you first have to understand how a kite works and some basic principles of aerodynamics. A kite flies, in accordance with Newton's laws of motion, as a result of the forces being applied to it. Since a kite is heavier than air, it needs the motion of the wind to generate the aerodynamic forces of lift and drag. The movement of the air flowing past the kite creates drag, while the lift is the movement perpendicular to the wind. The interaction of these forces determines how well the kite will fly. The ratio of lift to drag and the stability of the kite are tied to the length of the line; that is, the more line is released, the more drag is created.

To launch a kite, you need to create a lift force that is greater than the weight of the kite. The lifting force of a kite is created by the deflection of air downward; the change in the kite's momentum produces an upward force because the air traveling over the top of the kite is going faster than the air that's passing underneath. This fast-moving air produces less pressure, and because there's less pressure beneath the kite, it's forced upward.