K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

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UrbaneGorilla
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K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by UrbaneGorilla »

Can anyone explain why I feel a big difference in STABILITY and EFFORT between paddling in the front of a K2 and the back of a K2?

With a partner who's about equal in stability, strength and technique - we're both fairly competent and in Division 6 - we swap seats in a Stiletto.

On STABILITY both of us feel a bit wobbly in the back seat. Not enough to ever require a support stroke, but enough to not use maximum power on every 20th stroke or so when the boat tips slightly to one side.

But in the front seat, neither of us ever feel there is any issue with stability. We feel completely unsinkable in the front seat and slightly nervous in the back seat.

On EFFORT, the person in the back seat has an easier time. Each stroke seems flowing and easy. But move to the front seat and it seems like you are doing 65% of the work. Every stroke requires much more effort and you feel like the person in the back seat is doing 40% or less of the work.

Is it normal for the front seat partner to feel more stable but have to put in more effort?

Hengle
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by Hengle »

I have always found the front seat to be the wobbily one with so much less to think about in the back except timing and pulling hard.

the once in every 20 strokes thing sounds like a timing issue where you are watching the front paddlers stroke too hard rather than concentrating on what you need to do and 'feeling' the timing. as a drill I can only really think of pausing after each stroke in the ready position to allow the boat to run.
Heng

BTK66
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by BTK66 »

I agree with both of the previous comments! When in tippy K2 with a partner of equal or lesser ability the front feels more stable because you are in control. Also, any wobbles you generate from the front tend to throw the back paddler disproportionately around the boat. When in a comfortable K2, which you both feel stable in, then you can just sit in th eback and pull away without having to worry about keeping the boat upright and without being thrown around by the driver.

dodge
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by dodge »

hi have you made sure seats fit well with you on them ? Also try paddling with your eyes shut ,inthe back!going slowly to start and getting a better feel for timing can be a laugh has woked well for me in the past in k4s also as a result of lactate testing the front person has been shown to work harder

Eliza Dolittle
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by Eliza Dolittle »

You don't say which K1s you are both used to paddling. My guess is that you are used to something at the Javelin to Jaguar scale of the wobbliness spectrum rather than the Laance to Tor end. The front of a Stiletto is quite "snug" and it you are used to a close fitting K1 you feel quite at home there. Your partner in the back is suddenly feeling quite vulnerable because they are no longer getting feedback from the sides of the boat on their thighs/ hips, you add a bit of edge and they feel as if they are about to slide sideways of the seat. Once you feel nervous you don't pull so hard and then that compounds the wobbly feeling. Different seats may help, we have some "bucket style" ones in a Club Leader which paddlers either love or hate. The seats with old style centre pin fixings are prone to slipping especially with long legs. ( Glass in a second pin behind your seat. Screw a flat metal ruler to the base of your seat with a hole drilled where the second pin is to stop the movement)
It is also possible that you are both "alpha males" who like to be in charge and don't like not being able to see where you are going. We have some club members who always sit in the front, regardless of who their partner is and others who will only sit in the back. It can take some time for a K2 partnership to gel.

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UrbaneGorilla
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by UrbaneGorilla »

Thanks for the useful comments so far.

I don't think we have a timing problem at all - I think we are almost faultless there and I don't think we are watching the front paddler's stroke too hard. But it's worth taking your advice to do a pause exercise to let the boat run between strokes. I also tried closing my eyes in the back last week, but it made it worse. I will try again.

The seats don't move around. Though they are very basic, low and flat ones. I'll see if I can try some better ones.

Eliza's comment about lack of snugness in the back is correct. When in the front, my feet are firmly connected to the narrow footrest; in the back, I feel they maybe wander from side-to side, and I certainly don't do powerful leg drives like I can in the front. I also hit the side of the boat with my paddle every so often, so I am obviously not comfortable with the width in the back.

As to K1s, I've been at the Tor to Javelin stage in the last year. Before that it was Sceptre. The partner is Sceptre to Tor stage.

So I suppose it's possible that a Stiletto is just a bit too unstable at the moment. But even in a Condor or Mirage I still feel much more unstable in the back seat than I do in the front.

And No, we're not alpha males - I think we both trust the other person's judgement and technique perfectly, whether in front or back.

Again, thanks for these comments - any more comments will be gratefully read and acted upon.

Wheezy
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by Wheezy »

Would your relative weights be an issue, do you think?

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UrbaneGorilla
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by UrbaneGorilla »

Relative weights? Probably not a problem - 58 kg & 67 kg.

And as I said, we both feel less stable in the back and more stable in the front. If the weight difference was an issue, one of us would be better in the back I think.

dodge
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by dodge »

hi just in case you are slipping on your seat try wearing cotton shorts or damping the seat with water also for your feet you could limit movement with footstraps any sort of webbing will do but have them a little loose to start

GeoffBowers
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Re: K2 paddling - STABILITY and EFFORT

Post by GeoffBowers »

For what it's worth, I found over half a century ago, that I could mischievously tip out my partner in the back on a sunny summers day, and recover the boat with a draw stroke. My money is 100% on the front seat for stability. Whatever the reason, I'm sure of it. :D

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