My wife and I stayed at the Watermark on Kite Beach, directly across from The Method Lodge kiteboarding school. The owner is John Holzhall, who is one of the top respected coaches and innovators of the sport who helped introduce the sport to Cabarete after years of helping further the development of the sport during it's early formative years. John is also an author of 3 books on Kiteboarding, which I'd highly recommend picking up (amazon.com) if you are serious about learning the sport.
We stayed for 10 days, and took lessons from John and his team for about 8 of those 10 days. We considered using one of the other many schools in Cabarete, but after chatting and emailing with John a number of times prior to getting to Cabarete, it was clear that the instructional approach John uses is by far the best coaching you can get. It didn't hurt that a lot of the other schools basically use portions of John's teaching methods as they work the best - and are the safest as well! So, why would you ever go learn from a 'watered' down version from someone else at a different school, when you can learn from a leader and pioneer of the sport himself? And we're so glad we did. After seeing the difference in the instruction the schools offer, it's clear that John knows this sport 'cold' and how to teach that knowledge better than anywhere else in Cabarete.
John's is the only school where they have a top level kiteboarder IN THE WATER to help you when you get to the waterstart stages. He helps fix the kite if it gets fouled during waterstarts (after falls), if you lose your board - he retrieves it, along with any other issues. No other school offers this - this itself is reason enough for choosing The Method Lodge for any instruction. This means you spend more time learning to kiteboard, rather than floundering in the water or fixing your gear. He also uses experienced riders on his team to help expedite your equipment back to the starting point while learning, again, so you maximize the time spent learning and kiting, versus getting your kite and equipment back upwind.
John also offers SUP (Stand Up Paddling) which is a great time either in the expansive lodge or in the ocean learning to paddle surf the waves surrounding Cabarete. We can't say enough great things about working with John and his team, only to say that next time through Cabarete, we will definitely be taking more lessons (hopefully advanced ones at that time) from John and his team!
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