To snap a line or having your LE blown out are two misadventures that can happen when you’re kitesurfing. If you’re unlucky one of these incidents happens just when you’re kitesurfing alone or when you’re far away from other kiters that perhaps can rescue you. Both of these situations require that you wind up the lines on the control bar while swimming in the water (if you’re in deep water), something which is easier said than done… The key for a successful self rescue is to not panic. One can read at Wikipedia that:
Panic is a sudden sensation of fear, which is so strong as to dominate or prevent reason and logical thinking, replacing it with overwhelming feelings of anxiety and frantic agitation consistent with an animalistic fight-or-flight reaction.
Imagine a scenario where the kite for some reason has crashed in the water. Perhaps did the LE blow up or the bridles got entangled, the kite is in either case impossible to get back up flying. You lay there in the ice cold water several hundreds of meters from land and commence a self rescue. Suddenly you notice that a line is entangled in one of your feet… this is hence a situation when it’s not time to panic since it only will make the situation worse. Pause for a moment and slow down, save your energy, think of a plan and slowly swim upwind using your arms only. Gradually ease the foot from the line and go back to winding up the lines on the control bar once you’re free. Keep calm and stay focused. Also remember that “hot” water still is far from your body temperature and it will slowly but steadily weaken you.
Tip! If you’re kitesurfing alone then it’s wise to bring an extra leash. For example you can put it in the space between your lower back and the harness. You can use the extra leash to secure the board once you’re busy winding up the lines.