Today I want to offer up a few video clips to demonstrate mind over matter.. Or I should say, “body over paddle”. Let’s start with a couple vertical sculling rolls. These come from Greenland Style rolling and simply won’t allow you to push, pull or otherwise wank on your paddle blade. In the first clip I’m using a Greenland Paddle and it’s shot underwater. You can see that I do get a little purchase with the paddle, but the thing to watch here is the boat.
You can see, the power is used inside the kayak to roll the boat back under my bum. The paddle plays a very small part in the roll. Next, let’s see this same roll from above and using a standard paddle. Again watch the paddle, and watch the boat. Where does the roll start? What rolls the boat up?
And lastly here’s a basic hand roll. No paddle at all. Now it’s got to be all boat. You will notice however, that I tap my hand on the water when I kick off the roll. This little tap stops the boat from slipping back when your body initiates the roll. You’ll see some splash, but watch closely and you’ll see that it’s coming from bringing my arm out of the water. The hand actually taps the surface with very little energy at all. Even the hand tap is not nessisary.. but things do get a little trickier from there!
Hopefully these clips helped to re-enforce the idea that the paddle plays only a very small part in the actual kayak roll. Sometimes you simply need to see it. So.. next we’ll talk about why we’re focusing on “low impact” rolls, what that means and we’ll go into the ground work such as physical flexibility and good boat fit.