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Learn About Foil Kites

Foil Kites for Snowkiting & Land

Sheetable Depowerable Foil Kites

Designed for Snow Kiting and Kite Landboarding
Apex -  Montana - Matrixx

  • HQ Apex 4-line, Open-Cell Foil.
  • HQ Montana 4-line Open-Cell Foil
  • HQ Matrixx 5-line, Closed-Cell, Amphibious-Foil

The video below should be watched by anyone wanting to learn more about "Sheetable Foil Kites". It doesn't matter which model you're interested in because almost all sheetable foil kites share some basic design features that allow them to depower.

Sheetable / Depowerable Foil Kite Overview

Foil kites are the preferred option for land based kite-sports.

The "sheet-able" foil is the ultimate design for getting the maximum wind range. If you've ever adjusted the mainsail on a sailboat or the sail on a windsurfer then you already have experienced "sheeting-in" and "sheet-out" to adjust the power.

Sheeting is a windsurfing term which refers to trimming (or adjusting) the "angle of attack" (AOA) of the sail, or in this case a kite.

Sheet-in: Pulling your kites control-bar inward and Increasing your kites angle to the wind and generally increasing power.

Sheeting-out: Moving your kites control bar out and away from your body and decreasing its angle to the wind, and normally its power.

  • On a Sailboat you would pull or release the "main sheet" (The heavy Rope)
  • On a Windsurfer, you would trim the sail using your hands to pull-in on the "boom"
  • With a Kite, you control the sheeting via the Control bar, and/or Trim strap located just above the bar.

Standard foil kites regardless of the number of lines, 2, 3, or 4 line have a pre-set "angle of attack" and are not sheetable.

Adding a sheetable control bar to a non-sheetable, standard foil, kite would NOT make it into a sheetable kite.

With a "standard foil kite" you simply steer the kite right or left just like a 2 or 3 line kite. Sheet-able foil kites first became available in 2003, and they function much like today's "inflatable kites", allowing you to adjust the power of the kite instantaneously simply by moving the control bar closer or further from your body.

Like everything in life, nothing is perfect and thus there are a few pro's and con's to consider before you decide which kite is best for YOUR needs and budget.


"Standard Foil" or "Sheetable (depowerable) Foil Kite"?

Standard foil if you...

  • Have trainer kite skills
  • ready for more power
  • but want to keep things as simple as possible
  • are not ready to purchase a harness
  • fly in an area that generally has steady winds, or
  • feel a sheet-able kite would put strain on the budget.

You can always get a standard foil for now, and graduate up to a sheetable (depowerable) kite in the future.

Sheetable foil if you...

  • Already have some kite experience and...
  • Are ready to graduate to a more powerful kite
  • Want a kite to handle a wider wind range.
  • Ride in areas with gusty wind conditions,
  • Want the security of quickly being able to drop excess power.
  • Want "extra power on tap" for boosting more air (jumping).
  • Don't like spending time deciding which size kite to set-up.
  • Don't mind buying a Kite Harness.

Deciding Which Model

Once you have decided on getting a sheetable foil... your next question would obviously be "Which specific model?"


Will the kite be used only for land based sports such as snow-kiting or kite-landboarding?
If yes, choose an "Open Cell" Apex

Is it important that you can use the same kite on the water?
If yes, choose a "closed cell" Amphibious Foil  Matrixx.


If you will use the kite on the water, and have breaking waves, you definitely want to use an inflatable kite:
Examples: Best Kahoona or TS modles

Sheetable Foils: Performance vs Price

  • Are you more likely to be a cruiser
  • a freestyler who's constantly pushing the limits
  • or somewhere in-between?
  • Do you normally buy the "top of the line" gear for your other sports?
  • Do you look for high quality gear at the lowest price available?
  • Do you look for gear that's in the middle, good performance, but moderately priced?
  • Is the name brand of high importance to you?

3 types of Sheetable Foils

1. User friendly, Ultra stable,
low to moderate aspect ration design. Example: Apex, Neo

2. High-End Performance, Higher aspect design.
Examples HQ Montana, Ozone Frenzy, Matrixx

3. Amphibious, Closed cell foil which can be used on land or water:
Example: HQ Mattrixx (See the Video at the top of this page)

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