It's a question that we get asked all the time! If you're investing your hard earned cash in a top of the line waist harness then it should never ride up right? Unfortunately that's not always the case. To dig a little deeper into this problem I asked 10 of our REAL Pros for their tips and advice on how to tackle this simple problem and their answers were very surprising.
I expected to hear the same answer regurgitated 10 different ways but instead I found that everyone has their own little tips or methods to keep your waist harness around your waist (or stomach).
After gathering everyone's answers together I went out for a session and actually found myself using everyone's tips to help keep my harness in place while riding. These tips really helped me out so hopefully you will find them just as useful!
What the REAL Pros say:
I try to avoid standing around with my kite straight above me and I always tighten my harness again once I get into the water.
When sizing your harness, if you're on the fence between two sizes then go for the smaller size. I could wear a SM or an XS so I choose the XS and that works well for me. Every time I put my harness on I make sure I tighten it as much as I can.
It's not always your harness - it can be your stance. Try to remember ass-in not ass-out! If you're still learning, you may find there's no way to stop it riding up so don't be afraid to use a seat harness for a while.
The hold down strap that most harnesses have is there for a reason - use it! That's the single biggest thing that helps me.
Put your harness on right and get the right size the tighten it as much as you possible can. If you're still struggling, take a look at the Mystic Code. It compresses from the front and the back which makes all the difference!
I find that I can grab the edge of my harness and wiggle it down while riding. If you carry your width in the middle of your body and put your waist harness around your widest point (your stomach) - it's going to end up under your armpits! If that's your body shape, you are a better fit for a seat harness.
Wear your harness really really tight. I choose a harness that I can barely velcro when I first get it because I know it's going to loosen up over time.
When my harness rides up I just ride towards the kite so the lines go slack. Then its much easier to push it back down and carry on riding.
I often ask someone to help me tighten my harness before I launch my kite because I can't get it tight enough by myself!
Keep your board in between you and your kite. If you are jumping a lot, keep your kite low while riding in between jumps. It will force your harness back down.
I find it helpful to grab hold of the center lines just above the chicken loop to take the tension out of the lines. Then it's easy to push your harness back down.
Gear or technique?
Hopefully all of those tips will help you out when you are riding. The overall message is that in lot of situations, your harness will ride up a little and you just need to learnt to push it back down. If you're harness keeps riding up, we really recommend the Mystic Code. Because it has the BOA compression on the back as well as the spreader bar compression on the front - it stays in place like nothing else! Check out Matt's review of the Code 1 below...