Next Stop Kiel: Pumpfoil Festival

Water sports in the heart of the city

On July 22nd, 1001grad premiered their first Pumpfoil Festival during the opening weekend of the annual Bootshafensommer in downtown Kiel. Pumpfoilers were invited to the city of Kiel to celebrate and compete in various pumpfoiling challenges. The overall winner would be crowned the “Pumpfoil Champion of 2023”.


ENSIS TEAM riders, Michi Näf and Laura Rudolph, did not miss this opportunity and planned a weekend trip to the German Baltic Sea coast. Thanks to the small and compact nature of the pump foiling equipment, the ENSIS TEAM opted to take the train instead of a short-haul flight, making a better environmental decision.

Kiel is notorious for its summer weather, so most attendees of the event were sure to pack a jacket. However, rain or sunshine, nothing stopped the hydrofoil enthusiasts from having a great time. The Swiss train departed at 8:30 sharp, per usual…

Pumpfoil action

Three very different challenges were issued to the riders on the day. Speed, creativity, and coordination were being tested throughout the event. Tons of fun was to be had, and we’re sure a lot of calories were burned that day. We will cover the three challenges/disciplines below.


Speed, speed, speed. Two riders compete to get the best time around a course. The winner moves on to the next round, and the loser gets knocked out. There were very close battles, and it was exhilarating to watch.


Freestyle in pumpfoil? Riders had their creativity tested, had one-minute heats; weird dockstarts, foot drags, and carving were the name of the game. Tying all these moves together to make a combo is what impressed the judges most. It is great seeing riders expressing themselves in ways and places people don’t expect, that is what freestyle is all about, right?


Essentially a timed course, with challenges! Everyone had a great time spectating this challenge, and we’re sure the riders had to keep notes for this challenge. After dock starting, a belt had to be caught by the riders, which was suspended, then riders had to wrap the belt around their waist and buckle it. Next, riders had to grab a ball and throw it into a floating ring.

I’m sure the riders’ legs are on fire at this point, but it is not over yet. Riders then had to perform a 360 around the next buoy, and then duck under a limbo pole, only then they could head towards the finish line. The whole course was timed, with penalties for each obstacle not completed.

This challenge was hilarious and had everyone involved, laughing, cheering, and engaged. We hope to see more challenges like this in the future.

Post event

There were 14 participants who entered the competition, including one youngster and one lady. Our ENSIS TEAM rider, Michi Näf, officially finished second and was awarded a comically large cheque (the size of the paper, not the amount). Laura Rudolph was the only lady to enter the competition and, de facto, is our women’s Pumpfoil champion! Our sincerest thank you goes to all the ENSIS TEAM members at the event; you guys are amazing.

The weather was challenging on the day of the event, but this did not dampen any spirits. Thank you to the team at 1001grad for being experimental and bringing together passionate hydrofoil enthusiasts. The event was an exciting and fun-filled day, and we all look forward to the next one.

Interested in pumpfoiling or wingfoiling?

The ENSIS team were using the ENSIS HIP HOP PRO and ENSIS STRIDE, the perfect combo for anyone interested in pump foiling and dock starts.

The ENSIS team is highly skilled in all things foils and is eager to assist you in starting your foiling journey. Our worldwide retailers offer a variety of ENSIS products, making it convenient for you to bring wing foiling to your location. Contact us now to learn more about our products or locate an ENSIS retailer nearby.

Media by Daniel Pankoke and 1001grad