Our Business has been built around our passion for all things water sports, so we made sure to gather a team who is just as passionate as we are!
Our Mission: We strive to provide exceptional service and genuine interactions with those interested in watersports. We hold dear our passion for being out on the water and maintain this as our foundation for all business practices. By carrying quality products and providing honest, expert instruction and advice, we aim to help build up our local community of fellow businesses while continuing to “spread the stoke” among our customers.
(Runs the St. Petersburg location)
Aaron (A-aron), born and raised in Florida, has been a watersports junky from the beginning! As an avid sailor, he learned wind patterns and tide movement at a young age, later benefiting him and his passion for kiteboarding.
Aaron began kiteboarding in 2007. As time went on, he began seeing a growing interest in the sport and decided to start teaching kiteboarding lessons full time in 2012. He operated a mobile lessons center and a kite repair shop out of the house for five years until he realized he needed more space; the sport of kiteboarding was evolving fast!
April 1, 2016 Aaron and his wife, Vanessa, opened Elite Watersports in St Petersburg, Florida. Aaron remains out on the water as our Lead Instructor but also spends much of his time at the shop repairing kites (Elite Watersports is a full-scale repair shop too!). Don’t worry, he still finds time to squeeze in some time for a kite session here and there!
Executive Shop Manager
(Runs the Tarpon Springs location)
Vanessa, our rose between the thorns, was born and raised in Kansas. After meeting Aaron, she found herself diving head-first into everything that Florida had to offer, including all things kiteboarding.
Growing up in Kansas, Vanessa spent her summers on the lakes and rivers, which is where her love of watersports took flight. Now in Florida, she frequents the local wake cable park and kites the Skyway whenever possible.
Vanessa is our Executive Shop Manager and Social Media Guru. Feel free to stop by our Tarpon Springs location and check out what she has new in the shop!
From Venice, Florida, Dave was raised around the watersports culture famous to most Florida natives. Dave thrived in the watersports-scene and has built his life around his favorite hobbies. His favorite of course is kiteboarding, which he has been actively involved in for 13 years; 9 of those years he has been an instructor. If Dave isn’t out kiteboarding or teaching kiteboarding, he could be found instructing scuba diving. Somehow he also finds time for other passions as well like, skydiving, surfing, flying airplanes, and traveling to different kiteboarding destinations. His core focus with his kiteboarding progression is on freestyle and surf kiting.
Ryan is another Florida Native! Born and raised in St. Petersburg, FL, Ryan grew up surrounded by wind and water. He started sailing at the age of nine and continued sailing competitively on the collegiate-level stage at Florida State University.
While at FSU, Ryan began wake boarding and kiteboarding. He helped found the second collegiate kiteboarding club in the nation, the FSU Kiteboarding Association. He continues to work with college students aspiring to kiteboard, through the Collegiate Kiteboarding Association (CKA).
Ryan is an IKO Level 1 Certified Instructor and a Level 2 US Sailing Instructor.
Lead Instructor for Tarpon Springs
Bill’s Bio Coming Soon!
Kyle, too, is a Florida boy who grew up in the watersports scene. An avid surfer, Kyle chases the waves when he can. Kyle found kiteboarding to be another passion of his and has been chasing the wind ever since! In between teaching lessons and kiteboarding, Kyle works as a yacht captain.
Logan, another St. Pete Native, lives the watersports life year-round. As a fire fighter for Tampa Fire, Logan works his off-days on his family’s Stone Crab boat (Fresh Off The Boat Seafood) bringing in fresh crab to the Tampa Bay area. When he isn’t working, he enjoys kiteboarding, surfing off the East Coast and traveling.
Elite Travel Expert
Alexander’s passion for Kiteboarding evolved from his upbringing on the water in Naples, Florida, combined with chance exposure to the sport during his travels in Thailand. From that first lesson, the hook was set. Fast forward a couple of years his passion developed into a career with an iKO instructor level certification. His dream to bring the extreme sport to others back home in the Tampa Bay Area became a reality.
Alexander is a Level 2 iKO Certified Instructor and Elite’s Kiteboarding Travel Expert.
Kevin was born and raised on San Andres Island, Colombia. He moved to Tampa, Florida in his teens and later joined the United States Marine Corps in 2006. Kevin proudly served as a weapons technician and combat instructor in Japan. Upon his return to civilian life in 2013, Kevin, with a deep connection to the ocean, discovered kiteboarding. He has been passionately hooked ever since.
If Kevin isn’t found at the beach kiteboarding, he is either there with his family camping or free-lining around Tampa with his four-legged fur-babies.
Shop Manager (St. Petersburg)
Barker is from Denmark but spent most his life in Cape Town, South Africa. He fell in love with the ocean from day one. He started windsurfing and surfing at an early age. Once introduced to kiteboarding in 2010, Barker was quickly hooked. He has been teaching kiteboarding and managing water sport shops for the past few years on 3 different continents. If Barker isn’t managing the shop or doing lessons, he spends every free second on the water kiteboarding. He enjoys testing out new spots and different conditions.
Barker is an IKO Level 2 Certified Instructor.
Tanner was born and raised in the Colorado Rockies. His life long pursuit of adventure sports began when Tanner stepped into his first pair of skis at only two years old. In 2012, Tanner moved to Florida and found himself faced with a challenge; Tanner’s whole life revolved around snowboarding, downhill mountain biking, and whitewater rafting…pretty much any sport that involved gravity and the steep mountain pitches. He needed an outlet in the very flat state of Florida. Once he saw kiteboarding, he knew he had to learn and as soon as he did, he was hooked!
Shop Manager (St. Petersburg)
Patrick, a firefighter for St. Pete Beach, FL, lives for a happy life under the sun. If he isn’t on the water kiteboarding, or working at the fire station, he is enjoying quality time with his family.
On the days Patrick isn’t at the Fire House, Pat manages the St. Petersburg location. Stop by and say ‘hello’!
Ben comes to us from a small town in South Carolina. Our southern charmer has a passion for water sports that runs deep; starting with double skiing at age eight. Ben’s skiing enthusiasm quickly progressed and after many hours on the water, Ben competed on the big stage (Ben took home third place at the INT League Nationals for slalom skiing). Now, a junior at Eckerd College, Ben spends his spare time driving the wakeboard boat for Eckerd, kiteboarding at the Skyway, or working at the shop.
Onewheel Instructor/Tour Guide
Luke is our resident Paddleboard guru! Raised in South Carolina, Luke’s love for the water started at a young age. An avid surfer and previous windsurfer, Luke transitioned into the kiteboarding scene in 2013 and hasn’t looked back since! Now, in his spare time, he helps us out by taking folks on Paddleboard Tours and occasionally working in the shop. If he isn’t on the water or in the shop, you can find him cruising around downtown St. Petersburg on his Onewheel teaching new riders and leading tours.