Cross-curricular learning...?

Places, technique, kayaks, safety, the sea...
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Mark R
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Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Mark R »

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This is me with my longboard. I'm pretty hopeless, but I've really enjoyed giving this an amateurish shot over the past year.

One unintended side-effect of my new activity is that it's helped me to understand waves and trim a little better...e.g. struggling with waves 1-2 foot high (which you'd barely notice in a kayak) gives an interesting perspective and forces you to revisit the basics.

What other activities do folk do, which feed into/ complement/ assist their paddling?
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Graham T
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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Graham T »

Long past activities. I found windsurfing helped my dinghy sailing and vice versa. It might sound silly but the water is the water and if you spend time on it with focus you learn it's behavior. Racing brings how to go faster (obviously) into close focus, and surfing down wind is a great deal quicker. Minimising the effect of the waves on your progress into wind is also very important which while not perhaps directly applicable to my own paddling might be if using a fast kayak with a rudder not sure on this because I have not yet had a chance to put this into practice (yet fingers crossed)
Cross training is usefull for many sports but still perhaps under utilised but then most of us are not competitve with our paddling. That said I think playing in all sorts of different kayaks hard chine soft chine manouverable sluggish, or greenland paddles/ wing paddles high/low strokes fast/slow cadence all perhaps make us better paddlers even if it is not obvious at the time

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Stuart Yendle »

I've never done it but I reckon coasteering might help somewhat. The thought of coming out of your boat is always daunting, especially near cliffs in swells and it would probably give you confidence being in the water??

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Jim »

Mark R wrote:What other activities do folk do, which feed into/ complement/ assist their paddling?
My main complementary activity is sitting in front of a PC trying to explain the physics of why kayaks work to people. It really forces me to try and understand first!

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Post by Graham T »

[quote="Jim"]
My main complementary activity is sitting in front of a PC trying to explain the physics of why kayaks work to people. It really forces me to try and understand first!

Ha ha yes Jim and you certainly do a good job of it but we must stop meeting like this

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by EK Sydney »

Not a proper answer Mark, but deciding a few years ago to have a crack at a Rapier 20 was the single most influential thing I did to change my paddling. It led to surf skis, a big improvement in core strength and technique, and I'm now a completely different paddler. I don't have the time for anything active to complement it though, if chasing kids around the beach is disallowed......

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by jamesl2play »

Devizes to Westminster three years running sorted my forward paddling style once and for all. In my opinion anyway.

Fitness wise I took my daughter to a boxing gym and learnt what getting fit (and how to punch) is really about. That also helps your forward paddling as well.

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Mark R »

jamesl2play wrote:Fitness wise...
Yup, sea paddling isn't that big a deal for fitness. Pretty low impact unless you do it all day, every day. I used to think I was fit until I took up mountain-biking about 6 years back; suddenly I appeared to be in need of an extra lung. I know lots of fat sea kayakers...I know no fat mountain bikers...
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Post by Graham T »

Agreed on the fitness aspect and bought a Mountain bike myself this year. If we are looking at fitness not just for kayaking I blew out a calf muscle driving with my leg during a roll like I mean could not walk properly for 7 weeks. Rehab was proprioception work and rebounding on a small trampoline. A side effect is better coordination and balance so walking on wet rocks. I also at the same time embarked on rehabiitation of my shoulders for injuries sustained perhaps 25 years ago. This involves exercises mostly targeting the rotator cuff muscles and has helped to not only make the shoulders stronger but improved their stability a good precaution for nay kayaker particulry those who play in rougher water.
Yoga and general stretching will help reduce fatigue with paddle strokes and make rolling easier as well as protecting the back in some individuals

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by sleepybubble »

About 10 years ago I taught myself to Juggle. Just three balls a few simple tricks. I did it mainly for the spatial awareness benefits to help my climbing*, as well as the out of phase focus (which you will understand if you can Juggle). It did amazing things for my balance too. One of my party tricks is to balance on the back of a chair on one foot whilst Juggling now.

How does it help my paddling... well Balance obviously, but the out of phase focus thing is dead useful. The spatial awareness thing is dead handy when stuff is getting a bit interesting.

I'd recommend anybody to get hold of three hacky sacks and take up Juggling, you really can't lose from it. Oh and its quite a good workout too, all that bending down and picking the balls up as you learn :D


*I was pushing F8a+ at the time and training to compete for the BICC

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Mr Hoppy »

Mark R wrote:I know no fat mountain bikers...
You go biking in different places to me then. I'm hardly fighting weight and I look svelte compared to many I've seen recently.

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Mark R »

Mr Hoppy wrote:
Mark R wrote:I know no fat mountain bikers...
You go biking in different places to me then.
I'm guessing you mostly bike at uplift days...

;-)
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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by janet brown »

I'm hoping that swimming will help for my kayaking trip in the Alps, not just for swimming!!

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Mr Hoppy »

Mark R wrote:
Mr Hoppy wrote:
Mark R wrote:I know no fat mountain bikers...
You go biking in different places to me then.
I'm guessing you mostly bike at uplift days...

;-)
No I've been restricted to Llandegla and Coed-y-Brenin with the arrival of mr hoppy jr. Trail centre bikers are fat, failed golfers. My trip to the alps isn't going to have uplifts either, not sure that's sensible though.

Oddly enough I'm about the fattest sea kayaker I know.

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by journeyman »

Mark R wrote:...I know no fat mountain bikers...
Not so sure about that . . .

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by jamesl2play »

Yup, sea paddling isn't that big a deal for fitness. Pretty low impact unless you do it all day, every day.
Quite agree with that Mark the only thing that seems to get me fit for Sea Kayaking is Sea Kayaking. It is quite interesting to see how the round Britain paddlers daily mileage has been increasing as they get further around the coast.

With regard to mountain biking I cannot seem to lose weight doing it unless I am on rides like six hour enduros. A two hour blast around Afan will sharpen me up but I lose nothing. Road biking is good too. I rode some TDF Colls last summer and a three hour climb in the sun the weight drops off.

It always surprises me how many paddlers go biking. It is probably because you can put the boats on the roof and the bikes on the back.

Another vote for yoga. The flexibility obviously helps and I believe it is hugely underrated. Engaging your bandas also makes you look fitter.

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Scots_Charles_River »

Although many paddlers won't admit it, kayakers will benefit from the new 2 star/ukcc and having to open boat. This requires an open mind of course........

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Mark R »

journeyman wrote:
Mark R wrote:...I know no fat mountain bikers...
Not so sure about that . . .

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by mick m »

EK Sydney wrote:Not a proper answer Mark, but deciding a few years ago to have a crack at a Rapier 20 was the single most influential thing I did to change my paddling. It led to surf skis, a big improvement in core strength and technique, and I'm now a completely different paddler. I don't have the time for anything active to complement it though, if chasing kids around the beach is disallowed......
After a bit of coaching on forward stroke im flowing Mark and getting into a bit of ski paddling , as with Mark its becoming a real turning point in my paddling , another thing that's sweeping up the east coast at present is an intrest in Greenland Paddling .I think its relevant as it emphasis's confidence in the water

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by GlennT »

@ EK Sydney. Can you give a fuller explanation as to how the Rapier 20 influenced your boating?

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Post by EK Sydney »

G'day Glenn,
It was the challenge, prior I had just paddled sea kayaks, nothing with the level of attention required to paddle a boat like the Rapier on the ocean. If I had to summarise, I'd say it sharpened me up, made me work harder on technique and developing core strength, and led me to an entirely different style of sea paddling.
If you really want to get better, improve skills etc, I reckon a demanding sea boat will do it for you, if you have the right attitude.
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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Incayak »

For core strength and balance, I find horse riding compliments my paddling . . . and no, I'm not talking about water polo!

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Allan B »

Free diving, spear fishing, surfing and wrek diving all of witch have given me a good understanding and healthy respect for the sea. I've only been sea kayaking a short time and have the conference to go out in conditions that are not so faverable. At the moment I'm trying to roll and spent most of last night upside down having plenty of time to figger out what is happening is great, only down side is friends get a bit nervous when you have been under for too long.

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Re: Cross-curricular learning...?

Post by Kayaks'N'Beer »

Allan B wrote:Free diving, spear fishing, surfing and wrek diving all of witch have given me a good understanding and healthy respect for the sea. I've only been sea kayaking a short time and have the conference to go out in conditions that are not so faverable. At the moment I'm trying to roll and spent most of last night upside down having plenty of time to figger out what is happening is great, only down side is friends get a bit nervous when you have been under for too long.
If you really want to mess with their heads, come out the boat then pop your head up inside the cockpit and grab 5 minutes of air pocket time. Don't blame me if your mates end up beating the crap out you, tho.

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