A windsurf harness is a vital piece of windsurfing equipment. The harness is what attaches you to the sail or boom. You would not be able to surf properly without a harness.
The different types of harnesses vary. There are several reasons for different harnesses. There are varying styles of harnesses. There are some that are more comfortable for different styles of windsurfing. Personal preference also comes into play. Some surfers ride the waves and manage to pull stunts. Others are there to enjoy the wind in their hair and to ride small waves. The different styles of windsurfing require different harnesses.
One popular windsurf harness is one that attaches to the chest. It is a vest harness. When combined with an impact vest, there is additional padding for protection. These are a popular choice because they serve a couple of different functions. It can protect the windsurfer from injury by adding a molded form of padding. Often, impact vests also have high quality floatation properties and they double as a flotation device. An impact vest harness provides excellent back support, which is very important in this sport.
Another version of windsurf harness is a waist harness. These are a low profile harness that straps around the waist and lower back. It does provide some back support, but allows for more flexibility than a vest or chest harness.
The seat harness is also called the slalom harness. Like the waist harness, this version has a lower profile meaning it rides lower on the body. The contoured versions are made to fit nicely against your body without bulging or adding much extra bulk. If you are looking for a seat harness, try a few on first to make sure you are comfortable with the leg straps. If you opt for the crossover harness, you will notice that it fits around the rear, but also has added support and padding for the back.
These types of windsurf harness are vital to the sport. You will need a harness to secure yourself to your rig. Make sure that you find a harness with a fit that you like. If you are uncomfortable in your harness, it is likely you will be uncomfortable with your windsurfing session.
To find the right harness for you, be sure to try several on. It is helpful to try on different styles. Various brands of windsurf harness will also fit differently. Each style and even each model will have differing features and fits. Nothing beats trying out a harness in the water. If you have a windsurfing buddy, you may be able to try on their harness and test it out.
If you are enjoy both windsurfing and kiteboarding, you may be pleased to note that some windsurf harnesses double as kiteboarding harnesses. Many impact vests, in particular can work for both sports. As many wave riders enjoy alternating between kites and sail driven rigs, a dual-purpose harness can definitely come in handy.