Snowkiting requires a unique set of glove design variables for optimum performance.
Those variables include:
1) Grip: Snowkiting is a sport where control and performance are most determined by your connection to the control bar, which is most often made of soft rubber. For the best grip, the palms of your gloves need to be made of soft, grippy leather that has been tanned specially for that purpose. The surface of your hands need to be free of sweat or the dreaded clamminess, so maximum breathability is essential.
2) Dexterity: The twin brother/sister of grip. The best dexterity for a winter sports glove comes from premium grain, soft, grippy leather that molds to the shape of your hand. That is greatly assisted by utilizing a liner and insulation that is thinner and less lofty, such as Breathefil™ with 3M Thinsulate®. Dexterity is also assisted by a short-cuff wrist closure with Velcro. The bigger the Velcro patch, the better the ultimate fit.
3) Toughness: Manipulating the snowkiting control bar in the cold is highly abrasive on the palm of the glove, so the glove needs a leather palm with a re-enforcement patch that covers all areas of high wear on the palm. The type of leather is also important: properly tanned and treated premium grain cowhide is the toughest leather, with the best combination of grip and toughness. It’s what cattle ranchers use.
4) “Waterproof”: Water-resistance is important, but not at the expense of maximum breathability. The water-proofing should come from DWR, durable water repellent that is engineered into the leather and fabrics of the glove. Current technology of water-proof insert membranes puts you on a slippery slope of functionality, which decrease the versatility of the gloves.
5) Warmth: Obviously snowkiting happens when it's cold, but the sport is very active, so you need a glove with moderate levels of insulation, like a backcountry ski glove. A good amount is 200 grams of highly breathable insulation like Breathefil™.
Free the Powder Gloves has specifically designed a glove for use in snowkiting. Learn more