In the start of the handle pass era, the leash was put to the back as riders thought it has helpful or needed to make the kite go from one side to the other when doing the handle pass.
Not long after there were some accidents due to this behavior, some riders changed this, but the majority of the public still thinks that in the back is the way to connect the leash.
I still find several people with the leash attached to the back of the harness. Connecting to the back has been changing, especially with the short leach as it is harder to connect in the back. Some people starting connecting it on the side because there is a metal ring there and some placed it on the loop, but these places are not the best as I describe below and in the video.
In the video, you can see an old clip from pro rider Karolina Winkowska when she had a problem with the bar, and the kite started pulling her in an uncontrolled way by the leash. Since the leash was attached in the back, she could not release, and she had a hard time. Luckily people grabbed her kite, and she was able to get out of harms way without significant problem. In the video, you can see an experiment that shows you that having the leash on the back makes it impossible to release under pressure, even outside and in a relaxed environment, it’s not easy.
As an alternative to the back connection, riders often connect the leash to the side of the harness. The side ring was not designed for it and in case of pull also doesn’t allow for a smooth release. On our experience, the leash can even interfere with your arm making it even worse.
So the best way is to have it on the front so in case you are pulled your body will stay on top of the line allowing you to reach the safety leash quick release easily. It will be pulling you from the same place and orientation that if you were still connected. It is allowing you to remain in control of the situation.
So let’s look at some harnesses and how you can connect your leash to the front part of them as not all have a dedicated connection point for you to attach.
You have a harness with connection point already in the front and also without any place to attach. You also have a leash that connects via a line and other’s using a carabiner.
When we have a loop attachment point, it’s straightforward to connect it either with a line or a carabiner as It was designed for it.
The problem comes when your harness doesn’t have a specific point to connect your leash. Some people connect it to the main loop, but this can be a problem as it interferes with the hooking of the loop.
If you have a rope leash, one possibility is to connect it to the metal part of where the straps connect to the spreader. Usually, you can fit the line there. In alternative, you can also use the strap themselves.
If the leash uses a carabiner, you can try to put it in the same places, but it can be hard sometimes as there is not much space.
In this case, use a small piece of rope to make an attachment point for your carabiner.
Grab a piece of line, fold it and make a knot, then with the loop pass it in the place you decided to connect and loop it inside itself. You know have a connection point for your carabiner.
However, don’t use the extra piece when connecting a line leash as it can spin and lock the line preventing it from releasing.
Some odd leashes are like a rope but end in a metal part. I would avoid them altogether as this piece can lock on the harness, preventing it from releasing.
Some harness, however, don’t have a metal part to connect and you also might get some wear and tear by using the straps so you might find different alternatives like connecting to the spreader bar, but if space is not enough, it can jam the whole system and prevent you from activating it.