Rolling

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P4ddy
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Rolling

Post by P4ddy »

When I kayaked in 1984 the first thing we did was learn to roll and also bail out and climb back inside. There were no deck lines etc but we seemed to manage. Anyhow the method of roll we were shown was to hold the paddle parallel with the kayak whilst facing the same direction then basically try and push the paddle to the other side. Once rolled under it would be the same thing. Push the paddle out the water and stretch as far as you can whilst doing the same with your body and getting your head out of the water. That would initiate the roll to upright.
So I was wondering if that was a genuine old school technique and it evolved into that sweeping stroke with your head being last to exit? And do people still use that technique today? It seemed straight forward at the time and worked.

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Re: Rolling

Post by SJD »

I learned to roll in 1985 and was taught the full sweep head up last method.

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Re: Rolling

Post by PlymouthDamo »

P4ddy wrote:
Sun Oct 25, 2020 9:01 am
When I kayaked in 1984 the first thing we did was learn to roll and also bail out and climb back inside. There were no deck lines etc but we seemed to manage. Anyhow the method of roll we were shown was to hold the paddle parallel with the kayak whilst facing the same direction then basically try and push the paddle to the other side. Once rolled under it would be the same thing. Push the paddle out the water and stretch as far as you can whilst doing the same with your body and getting your head out of the water. That would initiate the roll to upright.
So I was wondering if that was a genuine old school technique and it evolved into that sweeping stroke with your head being last to exit? And do people still use that technique today? It seemed straight forward at the time and worked.
I can't picture the roll you're describing. I remember from when I was a kid that the two rolls you were taught in scouts etc. (which I never managed at the time, but remember hearing about them and had an old 70s 'canoeing' book which described them) were the C2C roll and the sweep (or 'screw') roll. Both of these involve getting your head out last. I can't think of any roll where you try to get your head out of the water first. Unless someone knows of such a roll, you might need to describe this roll in more detail.

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P4ddy
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Re: Rolling

Post by P4ddy »

Sit in the kayak turn your whole body so your facing at 90°, hold the paddle out parallel with the kayak then stay at 90° throughout the whole manoeuvre along with the paddle position you push the paddle into the water and yourself as though your trying to reach your whole body under the kayak and back out the other side. It worked every time.

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Re: Rolling

Post by Ceegee »

It sounds like you are describing the Pawlata, "invented" by an early 20th century German kayaker - the first roll I ever learned in an old BAT in a municipal pool 45 years ago! Like the later American C to C, invented by Micky Mouse (yes!), these are reinventing the wheel. You don't necessarily need a Greenland paddle, but it makes the setup easier.

Get a DVD or go online and look at some Greenland rolling tips, they have been around for 4,000 years, so are perfected, easy and effortless.

Here's a couple of my vids to get started; Cheri and Turner, then my daughter with Helen Wilson.







Cheers,
Steve C. G.

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Re: Rolling

Post by PlymouthDamo »

P4ddy wrote:
Sun Oct 25, 2020 4:15 pm
Sit in the kayak turn your whole body so your facing at 90°, hold the paddle out parallel with the kayak then stay at 90° throughout the whole manoeuvre along with the paddle position you push the paddle into the water and yourself as though your trying to reach your whole body under the kayak and back out the other side. It worked every time.
Okay - so effectively this would look like the kayak is a log rolling in the water, and the paddler's arms and body are wrapped round it? I've not heard of that roll, but in the Cheri Perry/Turner Wilson video that Ceegee refers to above, Cheri Perry tells one of the students to keep their body tucked into the kayak during the (storm) roll to allow it to roll like a log.

To pull off a roll like that you'd need to put some energy in, i.e. throw yourself into the water hard enough (and 'wound up' for a strong leg drive) so the kayak was rolling with enough inertia to fully rotate you back to the surface. I can't imagine being able to do it, and it would certainly be a 'useless' roll - i.e. it would never be of any assistance to you in the event of a genuine accidental capsize. I've learned quite a few useless rolls like that - they're great for showing off, and usually teach you some principle which helps with the useful rolls - but whenever I accidentally capsize, there are only 3 rolls I ever do, and they're all no-frills.

I've had a search online for things like 'kayak log roll' etc. but couldn't find anything. Your best bet would be to find the old fossil at your local club who remembers all the stuff that they did back then.

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P4ddy
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Re: Rolling

Post by P4ddy »

Lol, it was on an adventure camping trip in n salcombe. I always thought they were canoes but hey ho. This the reason for the thread, to find out if we were taught a genuine roll? None of us tipped accidently but would constantly roll in shallow water. .unless we did lay back but I really don't recall it that way. Ah well I'll be learning the normal way when I get out on the water.
Last edited by P4ddy on Sun Oct 25, 2020 8:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Rolling

Post by ChrisJK »

I also was one who never learnt to roll in sea scouts and fast forward 50 years and 3 winters where on and off i have been trying to roll in the pool. I am perhaps just a little bit further on but as I'm always always trying to get air very quickly I fail even though I can swim nearly 50m underwater.
I can't yet visualise what I really need to do underwater .
I suspect that I might crack it with a gp as there is no need to deal with paddle feather.
I've not yet watched the videos but the first 3 look to be using rolling kayaks or am I wrong?

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Re: Rolling

Post by PlymouthDamo »

ChrisJK wrote:
Sun Oct 25, 2020 8:29 pm
I've not yet watched the videos but the first 3 look to be using rolling kayaks or am I wrong?
They're built to copy the dimensions of traditional skin-on-frame Greenland boats, which are generally good for rolling due to the good contact between your thighs and boat as well as the low rear deck, which makes laying back easier. You don't need to have a boat like that to do the basic rolls though - I do them in my plastic river boat with a euroblade paddle, and they work fine. (The flashy rolls, like the 'brick roll' above, or the 'straitjacket roll' would need an optimised rolling boat, but all you want is to be able to do one basic roll reliably.)

The videos which CeeGee is referring to above are 'This is the Roll' vols 1 and 2' by Cheri Perry and Turner Wilson. These are universally acknowledged to be remarkably effective teaching aids, and are not just focused on Greenland paddlers. For each roll, they explain the problems you might experience because of the type of boat or paddle you're using and how to solve them - e.g. they explain how to do all the rolls with a euroblade paddle if you haven't got a stick. If ever there was a kayak-related product that I'd be prepared to get in trouble on here for advertising, it would be these:
https://www.cackletv.com/sea-kayaking-d ... -the-roll/
https://www.cackletv.com/shop/dvds/this ... 2-dvd.html

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Re: Rolling

Post by ChrisJK »

Thank you.
My Capella is not particularly snug with only self made foam thigh pads. Maybe I'll look at those.
I would have hoped to spend some time in the pool this winter but though it may be safe, I can't bring myself to go being in a tier 3 area.

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Re: Rolling

Post by Jim »

P4ddy wrote:
Sun Oct 25, 2020 4:15 pm
Sit in the kayak turn your whole body so your facing at 90°, hold the paddle out parallel (perpendicular?)with the kayak then stay at 90° throughout the whole manoeuvre along with the paddle position you push the paddle into the water and yourself as though your trying to reach your whole body under the kayak and back out the other side. It worked every time.
I've seen that in an old sea kayak book years ago, got a feeling it was called 'queens salute' or something similarly daft. The main problem with it in a kayak is that you have to slide your hands to one end of the paddle and rotate into a strange position after capsizing which can take quite a lot of time, especially if you have already extended the paddle, so it is not very practical in most real life sitations. These are similar reasons for the Pawlata roll going out of fashion too - it uses an extended paddle grip, but starts with the paddle parallel to the boat not perpendicular.

It is however a popular roll for canoes - not the big type which you rattle around in, but the smaller whitewater types with a a sadde and bulkhead or straps to hold you in upside down, usually referred to as OC1s, and also in decked canoes called C1s. My own C1/OC1 roll is not entirely this type, although in truth the second part of it is, and it is questionable how much the first part actually does. With a canoe paddle you only have a single blade so one hand is already on the end of the shaft (T-grip) so there is no hand shuffling required to set up, and it is much quicker to position half a paddle underwater than a whole paddle, finally because we are kneeling it is also much easier to rotate into position, and during the roll. It is however still critical to keep your head in the water until the last possible moment even with this type of roll. Google OC1 rolling videos and you should soon find some examples of this kind of roll being done with single blade paddles. I would not recommend re-learning it in kayak, there are lots of better rolls to learn for kayaks.

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Re: Rolling

Post by Jim »

ChrisJK wrote:
Sun Oct 25, 2020 8:29 pm
I also was one who never learnt to roll in sea scouts and fast forward 50 years and 3 winters where on and off i have been trying to roll in the pool. I am perhaps just a little bit further on but as I'm always always trying to get air very quickly I fail even though I can swim nearly 50m underwater.
I can't yet visualise what I really need to do underwater .
I suspect that I might crack it with a gp as there is no need to deal with paddle feather.
I've not yet watched the videos but the first 3 look to be using rolling kayaks or am I wrong?
Most people start trying to pull the paddle down (this is a problem with the kind of roll the OP wa trying to describe too), it can help greatly to have an instructor who understands rolling guide your paddle during a pool session. If you don't have one an instructor to hand, imagine there is something nasty on the end of your paddle and you want to keep it well away from your head throughout the roll (this helps you reach out away from you instead of pulling the paddle towards you), and then try to sweep it in an arc across the surface of the water, without pulling down on the blade, or pulling it towards you. As you twist your body to do this you will push the boat half way up without any effort at all, then it is all about the finish, keep pushing the boat upright with your legs as you run out of sweep , and keep looking along the shaft at the blade until you feel the kayak has passed the point where it might fall back over before lifting your head up.

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Re: Rolling

Post by Owen »

ChrisJK wrote:
Sun Oct 25, 2020 8:29 pm

I suspect that I might crack it with a gp as there is no need to deal with paddle feather.
It doesn't matter what paddle you use, Greenland paddles are not a magic bullet to learning to roll. You can hand roll any kayak with enough practice. It's all about learning the body position and techniques.

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Re: Rolling

Post by jamesl2play »

I learnt to roll in the local river in 1969 and had a good solid roll for years.
I went on a weekend with Cheri and Turner to learn some fancy rolls.
My head got fried and now my roll is very hit n miss.
Seems you cannot teach an old dog new tricks.

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Re: Rolling

Post by PlymouthDamo »

jamesl2play wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 10:23 am
I learnt to roll in the local river in 1969 and had a good solid roll for years.
I went on a weekend with Cheri and Turner to learn some fancy rolls.
My head got fried and now my roll is very hit n miss.
Seems you cannot teach an old dog new tricks.
I fully get that. I was a bit grumpy about being taught the Greenland roll when I'd already got a very reliable screw roll - what was the point? I was concerned that, like you've described, learning to do it a different way would just end up with me losing my ability to roll at all. I'd had history of this happening: I was briefly a member of a local club and during a winter pool session, I managed to learn to hand-roll. I was trying to 'over-learn' this new skill with multiple repetitions, when some know-all wandered over and told me to pause the roll whilst fully capsized, rather than doing it as one continuous movement. I never managed this, and then lost the ability to do it at all - never to be relearned until many years later when I learned the Greenland version. I subsequently discovered that this know-all guy couldn't roll at all and was evidently just keen to be seen as an expert...

So yes - if you've got a strong roll, there's a lot to be said for just practicing that one to keep it reliable. That said, I do think 'losing' your ability to do a roll is an important part of the learning process as you have to diagnose which one of the simultaneous movements you've stopped doing properly. We do a lot of the movements on autopilot without thinking about them, so having to stop and think when things go wrong will force you to understand the roll better. I've been at this stage with the Greenland 'storm roll' for a few years. I can do it, but it just doesn't feel confidence-inspiring and I occasionally fail. But I'm persevering (getting mates to video me etc) because I know that when I finally track down whichever part of the movement I'm not doing right, I'll have a much better understanding and it will become another roll I can actually rely on when it counts.

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Re: Rolling

Post by jamesl2play »

It was trying to learn the Storm Roll that messed me up.
Turner makes it look effortless in 'This is the Roll'
I thought learning that would make my old screw roll more solid.

The problem is that in the Storm Roll the control hand switches over from the hand in the water to the hand on the boat.
So one part of my brain is doing a left roll whilst the other (old part) is still trying to do a right roll so it no longer works.

One other problem with Storm Roll is that when the shaft slides a long the deck unless you are really focused you take the skin off you fingers on the the skeg slider.

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Re: Rolling

Post by Chris Bolton »

I also 'lost' a very well practiced roll after learning something different. In my case, I could roll a kayak very reliable until I started paddling C1 canoe on rivers. My kayak paddling was all sea expeditions, with a conservative mindset and avoiding trouble, so I didn't use my kayak roll, while my C1 roll had lots of practice. After 10 years of that, I had a knee problem and couldn't kneel in a canoe, so went back to kayak on rivers, and found I couldn't roll at all. Even on a warm, flat lake, I'd set up for the kayak roll, tip over and my instinctive C1 reaction roll would take over and not work. Eventually I realised I wasn't setting up properly - with the single blade, it wasn't necessary to lean forward to get my arms near enough to the surface, and I'd lost that habit.

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Re: Rolling

Post by PlymouthDamo »

jamesl2play wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 11:32 am
The problem is that in the Storm Roll the control hand switches over from the hand in the water to the hand on the boat.
So one part of my brain is doing a left roll whilst the other (old part) is still trying to do a right roll so it no longer works.

One other problem with Storm Roll is that when the shaft slides a long the deck unless you are really focused you take the skin off you fingers on the the skeg slider.
I'm with you on being wrong-footed by the swapped hands - from looking at recent videos of me doing it, I'm still pulling up on the outside (water) hand too much. As well as failing the roll, the consequences of this could be that you knacker your shoulder, which I've done a couple of times although, so far, no permanent damage.

I'm lucky on the second point though - I dont have a skeg on my rolling boat so no worries there. (I've done storm rolls in my normal boats and haven't hit the skeg controller though - probably just a matter of luck as to where the manufacturer has located it?) I do still hurt my fingers sometimes just scraping the back of them across the hull.

I never really had any problems with the storm roll in terms of messing up my existing rolls though. Because it's forward-finishing, it feels to me like a completely different activity to what I'd learned previously. As soon as I fail a storm, I come straight back up with a standard (aft-finishing) Greenland roll without any problem. I'll have a go recovering with a screw-roll next time and see if that's any worse. I did have a problem the other way round though - i.e having learned the aft-finishing rolls making it difficult to learn the storm roll. It took me ages to overcome the instinct to lay back, and I still do it as a desperation reflex at the last moment before capsize when I've messed up a storm roll.

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Re: Rolling

Post by Ceegee »

I'm far from an expert, certainly not a "know-all guy couldn't roll at all... just keen to be seen as an expert", I've just got my basic 2 rolls, extended paddle and storm, still worse on the right than the left, despite 40 years of trying. My daughter is the big one on this, but one extra rolI I successfully try which gets you to the point I make below is the "butterfly" - not a recognized roll, but it gets you into the whole rotation thing.

PlymouthDamo said: "you'd need to put some energy in, i.e. throw yourself into the water hard enough"

To a point yes but think about it, energy isn't really the issue here. When I did my sea proficiency (now the 4*) they had us doing high brace supports, all power and fight.

"Capsize left and recover, I want to see you get your shoulder in the water" so I obliged with a wet collar. "Not that shoulder, your RIGHT shoulder" the examiner shouted. We need to re-adjust our white-water inherited attitudes to power rolling.

Kayaks float well and roll easily on their own (as does a log), and you too float easily on your back, so why should it be harder to float just because your legs are in a buoyant kayak which does not impede your rotation???

The trick is to relax, rotate your hips in the seat, lever the deck upright with your thigh, and lay back in the water with your shoulders flat to the surface and your head back. You quickly move into the static or paddle brace position, which stable.

Think lying floating on your back but with a buoyant float under your bum, thighs and calves (the kayak).

It is not the kayak holding you under water, it is your poor posture which prevents you returning to the surface where physics wants you to be.

Now you just need to return your centre of gravity from the water to the kayak, and the easiest way for you to that is to stay flat on your back, supported by the water, and straighten your spine so your shoulders slide in across the back deck. Then just sit up. In Niamhs vid below, that the bit she struggles most with and pulls a face.



You have just completed the classic rear-finishing roll. The paddle (or non-paddle) was largely incidental to the whole business.

Mentioned elsewhere, the kayak in the 1st 3 vids is a Tahe Greenlander, a fairly benign hybrid rolling kayak and day boat, so not a particularly LV rolling boat. It handles comparably to a Pilgrim, Anas Acuta or Isel (but it's a hard chine obviously).

The vids are mine btw, not from a DVD, and shot at various private meets, so no copyright issues.
Cheers,
Steve C. G.

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Re: Rolling

Post by PlymouthDamo »

Ceegee wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 6:51 pm
PlymouthDamo said: "you'd need to put some energy in, i.e. throw yourself into the water hard enough"

To a point yes but think about it, energy isn't really the issue here. When I did my sea proficiency (now the 4*) they had us doing high brace supports, all power and fight.
I think there's a bit of confusion here because we're all coming up with different things when we try to imagine the roll that the OP was originally describing. You thought he was describing the Pawlatta, Jim thought it was an old oddity possibly called something like the 'Queens Salute' and I thought he was saying you wrap yourself round the boat and stay fixed in that position from start to finish without moving your arms or body at all. If you can picture a roll as odd as what I was thinking of, you'll see what I mean about adding energy - you're effectively pretending to be a log rolling in the water, and for that to work, something would need to turn it.

Although most Greenland rolls do aim to minimise the effort, they all still do require some energy - even the sacred straitjacket roll, where the rotation comes from forcefully moving your head from forward on one chine to laying back on the opposite chine, which gives you the resistance against which to rotate your legs/hips. So my imaginary frozen-wrapped-round-log roll would require a hell of a splash on entry to give you the momentum to pop out the other side!

The nearest I've come to an energy-free roll would be this one:


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Re: Rolling

Post by pathbrae »

To the OP - What sort of Kayak?

The "couldn't roll after being told to pause" comment is also interesting. It suggests that there was a need for momentum to get the boat back upright - so would probably fail if the capsize wasn't planned - so maybe this "know-all guy" (who was trying to help after all) had spotted this and was trying to gently warn them that they might have had a problem....
It's also a lot easier to roll a kayak in a pool with no layers of clothing, drysuit, BA etc. restricting your movements.
The other problem we all have is that we all have different names for the same roll. I have seen at least 4 different "storm rolls" They all worked, were all basically the same and had the same aim (working the blade deep in the water to avoid all the "froth" on the surface in seriously stormy conditions)
Fortunately the dark days of "you must roll before we take you out" are past - it's a skill people pick up but it's not a necessity unless people are looking to paddle solo (and even then, a self rescue might be an option)
We have all had a roll fail at some point - and it does nock your confidence a bit - So, yes, a good skill to have - but no-one is going to roll every time! And for those who say they can - that failure is just waiting to bite you! :-)
So much sea - so little time to see it.

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Re: Rolling

Post by ChrisJK »

I see that during the time I last contributed to the post it has well kept rolling.
Yes pathbrae I for one am glad "you must roll before we take you out" isn't applied in the two clubs I belong to or I'd have given up. I have managed one or two rolls one of which was a rescue drill where one reseats into an upturned kayak and rights with the help of a paddle float.
My problem with rolling that in a flip over situation one doesn't have the luxury of bending elbows etc to counter feather so a gp is presumably easier to orientate.
I have also noted that in the pool at least there are folks who can roll but don't know the difference between a low and a high brace or tell sculling from a draw stroke.
After a long paddle at the end of the day I did try a practice capsize and bang on the hull but when a boat came I took hold of my own safety lines, which then meant I exited whilst the coach righted the boat so I came out anyhow which was a tad claustrophobic.
I also gather that there are lots of ways to roll. As one who pre Covid did a reasonable amount of lane swimming I also did a bit of dry drills. For me at least it would better help visualise what's needed if I could see and practice in an upright air breathing position rather than seeing some one miraculously and apparently effortlessly roll.

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Re: Rolling

Post by Jim »

pathbrae wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:47 pm

The other problem we all have is that we all have different names for the same roll. I have seen at least 4 different "storm rolls"
I completely agree.

I used to use the names that Derek Hutchinson used in his book because as a kid, I basically spent pool sessions trying to learn to do all those rolls - including 2 types of storm roll that I don't recognise from the descriptions given above. There were a couple I couldn't get the hang of (one was a single blade roll, and the other the one I think the OP was describing) but I got most of them pretty well, and started doing other exercises to extend my range of useful things I could do with a paddle, even though they didn't appear to have a real application.

Amongst the rolls I remember were pawlata, screw, reverse screw, steyr, storm, vertical storm, something involving back and forward sweeps which might have been called C-C? But nowadays some of those I never see any more, others I see given all sorts of different names. At some point freestyle kayakers came up with the "back deck roll" which done as per the original technique uses both paddle blades and in a suitable small playboat you can actually keep your head above water whilst flicking the boat over the top of you - it is not a recovery move, but part of the initiation for some tricks - these days a lot of people refer to reverse screw roll as back deck roll, because you start on the back deck - it can get confusing. I don't even try to keep track of what people call C-C or combat rolls any more.

There are only 2 rolls I ever actually do for real in a kayak, reverse screw roll (I find the setup natural from the way I tend to capsize), or screw roll (usually only when reverse screw fails). I also have a C1/OC1 roll which is different to the type most others do these days, but it is reliable for me so I stick with it, I don't think it has a name. I don't teach rolling any more, but when I did, and if I were to again, I would only teach screw roll (but not name it) because to me it is the most useful roll for a kayaker - you don't need to move your hands and once you have the technique you can roll quickly with little effort, and you can slow it down if necessary to deal with the inertia of a loaded boat. Once you have a screw roll you will be able to work out any other kind of roll for yourself.

As for the issue of rolling with feather, make sure you at least have an indexed grip on the control side of your shaft - if it feels right in your hand, you will automatically know the blade is in the correct orientation. If you have that, it really does not matter what kind of blade you are using. My WW touring and slalom paddles tend to have indexes on both grips (I think I do delegate control to my left hand when it is leading a roll, but not 100% sure). Although people advise against fitting grips to wing paddles, I do use a grip on the right side and I can screw roll just fine with a wing blade when using an indexed grip, I actually cant remember if I have reverse screw rolled with wings - I am usually in a WWR boat where the reverse setup is not as practical as in other boats. I don't fall in very often any more, although I do remember rolling my new WWR boat over the summer (very embarrassing, I hadn't actually got out of the put-in eddy, and my friend who was 50 yards upstream and I thought was facing the other way, somehow saw it too).

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Re: Rolling

Post by PlymouthDamo »

Jim wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 11:30 pm
I basically spent pool sessions trying to learn to do all those rolls - including 2 types of storm roll that I don't recognise from the descriptions given above.
That's a good example of confusing names. One of our mates is a club instructor and me and him had a very confused conversation until we figured out that although they share the same name, the Greenland and whitewater storm rolls are totally unrelated:


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Re: Rolling

Post by Jim »

PlymouthDamo wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 11:53 pm
Jim wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 11:30 pm
I basically spent pool sessions trying to learn to do all those rolls - including 2 types of storm roll that I don't recognise from the descriptions given above.
That's a good example of confusing names. One of our mates is a club instructor and me and him had a very confused conversation until we figured out that although they share the same name, the Greenland and whitewater storm rolls are totally unrelated:

Beats me, Hutchinson was a sea kayaker and was mainly describing native rolls (Greenland and North American) and both the versions I remember were Greenland based and I think even illustrated with Greenland paddles. Both used an extended paddle setup, for both you lift the blade clear of the water and then pull down hard to sink the blade deep before it starts to sweep to the side, the difference between them was the one started with the blade flat, and the other with it vertical. Both worked but I could never see the point, screw roll works fine in turbulent water.

That video shows what I think used to be called C-C? To me it is is just a variation on a screw roll to finish forward, I never really considered it needed its own name... :) I tend to use that variation if rolling in surf or whitewater and I want to get into position for a forward paddle stroke ASAP to get the boat moving again to get back in control.

Do you think naming rolls discourages people from experimenting with variations?
I have always felt that trying to define a right or wrong way to do a stroke is unhelpful, and that it is better to get people to experiment with changing aspects - blade angle, position from the boat etc. and getting a feel for how they affect the way the stroke works, so that later on they will be able to instinctively modify strokes to tailor them to actual situations as they unfold. I think the same approach is useful with rolling, which is after all just a complex stroke.

adventureagent
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Re: Rolling

Post by adventureagent »

pathbrae wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:47 pm
To the OP - What sort of Kayak?
It's also a lot easier to roll a kayak in a pool with no layers of clothing, drysuit, BA etc. restricting your movements.

...

Fortunately the dark days of "you must roll before we take you out" are past - it's a skill people pick up but it's not a necessity unless people are looking to paddle solo (and even then, a self rescue might be an option)
I certainly find all the clothing/safety stuff to be an impediment, compared to just me 'n' the boat.

Our national coach would not teach his whitewater paddlers to roll until their third year of racing. He felt it more important to learn to use pre-emptive strokes well first. Like braces. Time under the boat is not efficient paddling. My favorite stroke is the low brace, which I regularly do enroute, just so it's a reflex.

I did a lot of solo touring by kayak before learning to roll. So I don't agree that you need to roll before you solo tour. Not having a roll one would exercise mort caution, I trust. I learned that a roll was a great way to cool off while underway, without stopping, especially with a loaded boat. It was a screw roll that I'd learned to excellence. (I'd do it so fast I never got wet - eh?)

I admit that having fallen out of practise with the roll, I am a far more nervous paddler, and a far more conservative paddler. Each year I promise myself that I will restore my intant and bombproof roll. Each spring the water's too cold. Before I know it, fall's water is too cold and another year of non rolling has passed. It's far less adventurous to not be doing the roll.

Yes, terms used to name different strokes or parts of them seem to change. That confuses me and I sound kind of dozy when I ask the person "what's that"? The same happens with names of rapids. Suddenly that place you knew so well as "washing machine" is now "wringer" and so on.
CELEBRATE LIFE: PADDLE by ALL MEANS !

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Re: Rolling

Post by PlymouthDamo »

Jim wrote:
Wed Oct 28, 2020 12:31 am
Do you think naming rolls discourages people from experimenting with variations?
I've always thought the absolute masters of rolling were those extreme white water paddlers who you see on YouTube dealing with horrific beat-downs for minutes on end. As you say, they're not following a formulaic approach - they're just instinctively making whatever moves are required at that fraction of a second. (Plus, the one 'basic' roll I've never been able to get anywhere near is their back-deck roll. It can be done in a sea kayak with a stick - just not by me.) They must be mystified by the YouTube videos of Greenlanders in gimp-suits doing pointless rolls on flat water. I no longer learn rolling as a safety measure - I'm purely doing it for fun, one-upping my mates etc. So the idea of it being too difficult etc. doesn't come into it - we just end up spontaneously breaking into a rolling session at some point during trips because there's always some roll that you're trying to crack. Most of our rolls are indeed pointless and would never be used in anger, but it's like learning to wheelie a bike when you were a kid - you just do it to impress your mates. However, I do think even these pointless rolls do help you towards more instinctive paddling. When my club instructor mate described the white-water storm roll (which you've described above) to me, I was able to pull it off first attempt without even having seen it, because most rolls are just slight variations on a theme. Talking of which: take a closer look at the above video of the Greenland storm roll and you'll see it's very different to the C2C (or hip-snap) roll. The C2C is basically a screw roll where you stop the sweep when the paddle is at right angles to the boat and hip-snap off it to right the boat. The Greenland storm roll relies on your 'inner' hand to press the paddle against the upturned hull of the boat to power the leg-drive - it's a bit mind-blowing to learn hence the discussion I was having with jamesl2play up-thread.

I sympathise with people who've been reporting being excluded from trips etc. but my approach to all that club politics stuff has been to side-step it. Apart from one winter, I've never been a member of a club and don't have any BCU stars etc. My paddling has always been me and a group of mates - first white water/surfing and latterly sea-kayaking in Greenland boats. So talk about people being excluded from trips or being bullied into learning things this way or that is alien to me - we've always just done what we want to do, and will always welcome novice friends along and adjust our paddling to suit what they're comfortable with.

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Re: Rolling

Post by nickcrowhurst »

Just for historical interest (or hysterical amusement) "The Queen's Salute", mentioned earlier, was my first roll, as described in my 40 year old BCU Handbook. It definitely helped to have a 90 degree paddle feather, or a very lop-sided chest:

Image

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Re: Rolling

Post by ChrisJK »

For a non roller this seems a useful link
://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04EjznGvei8&feature=emb_rel_end
Sorry I cant figure how to insert the video.

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Re: Rolling

Post by P4ddy »

I feel like I've opened a family size can of worms. Anyhow I'd be interested to see someone try the method I tried to describe to see if it works. With or without a paddle it won't matter.
Last edited by P4ddy on Wed Oct 28, 2020 9:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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