looks so easy!

Just got The Kayak Roll DVD in. Spent a good hour or two on my back with my feet up in the air and a broomstick squirming and twisting on the floor to the great amusement of my wife, kids and the dog. (Nice to know that I can still be entertaining!)

And…as I fit the average profile for the age group of P-netters…well, I’ll leave the visuals to you all.

We Can Talk
Yesterday I figured out how to make my digital camera make a movie clip. If the weather holds up this afternoon my buddy and I will get some video of our rolls so we can see what we do right/wrong.

hey kudzu…great idea
I am going to set up the digital camera on video mode and have a buddy film me from as close to the same perspective as from the DVD. I can plug it into the laptop and check as I go.

I am set up though for a rolling lesson on the 27th. I would love to have a roll down before that so I can work on that “finesse” thing.


Watch out, Paul -all I can say is, it wasn’t pretty… and the first few on the water are liable to be about the same, LOL!

But while it didn’t suggest what to do right, it SURELY exposed the flaws! It wasn’t Tiger, Ernie, Jack or Arnie -maybe someone from Cirque du Soleil?

Hopefully, the combination of the two -The Roll, and The Paul (can yuou open two clips at once? That might help…) -and your ability to see the differences between them and to use that knowledge to alter and improve your technique will accelerate the learning curve. Maybe… by the time the lesson “rolls around”, you’ll HAVE a roll -and the lesson might be in making it more automatic…!

BTW, it might help -if you’re not doing it already -to use a dive mask, at least in the beginning of the process. When I took an intro lesson -about a half hour-45 minutes worth -I ended up with a really stuuffy sinus towards the end, and for a while after. This, even after spending much time on -an IN -the water through the years.

At any rate, you can use your lake, or come down to Hobie and have an audience (I’ll watch & “film” if you like) -besides the amused family and dog watching you rooch around the LR floor -to exhort you to rock & roll &


-Frank in Miami

gotta promise to get my best side…

WHICH one…???


Roll it and then just


-Frank in Miami

well that
depends who is looking I guess.

Every move, every painstakingly practiced sweep stroke and ending position, every thought I thought I knew about rolling fell out of the boat along with me quite a few times today.

Didn’t even come close.

Casual observers probably saw a perfectly good boat going over time and time again, some idiot waving his paddle above the water, and some sort of twitching and thrashing that could have just as easily been an alligator getting a hold of the fool under the boat.

Folks this is embarassing. I ran out of curse words in three languages!


Here’s how my first roll went…
I’m on a small local pond - plenty of public audience.

The boat was a Dagger Crossover and my paddle was a 230cm Werner San Juan. I’m fairly tall with simian arms so I have a lot of leverage.

Excecuted what I thought was a sweep roll but was in all reality a high brace. Gave it everything I had.

I came up all right… came up so fast and violently that I went over the other side before I knew what was happening. Drank half the damned pond, let go of my paddle, had to wet exit, and entertained the local youth.

So… I guess you could say my first roll attempt was successfully unsuccessful :o

That was a bit over two years ago. Got a pretty reliable roll now but I’ll never forget that first time around!

Pleasant waters to ya.


Ok, I’m Home

– Last Updated: Aug-12-05 9:32 PM EST –

We rolled some and missed some. The video clips tell me my misses were caused by a bad angle on the paddle blade. It dove straight to the bottom.

The hits looked nice and effortless when I kept my upper body leaned back as I came up.

Brasilbrasil, I didn't roll the first time 'til pool class #3. Don't get discouraged.

You sure 'bout dat?
If your failures have anything to do with the paddle - I say it’s because you are focusing to much on the paddle! Lots of reasons a paddle can dive or stall and sink - but few that happen once you stop trying to roll with the paddle!

Focus on twisting the boat over with abs/knees and then let it pull you up last. Paddle be damned! It’s just there for guidance through the sweep so you stay near the surface and can focus your ab power.

Why am I so sure that paddle is the least important element (and also the most likely to confuse)? I learned with GP and never had to think about the paddle at all. When I tried other paddles -all my euros and even my wing - guess what? I still didn’t pay much attention to the paddle. Surprised me a little as I expected more blade angle issues, but I had learned the feel of a no resistance sweep with the GP. That feels about the same with all paddles. No resistance works, and means the paddle is not doing the work.

Sure you can have the blades tilted and slice down and dive, or slice up and stall - but the real problem is both are symptoms of over powering the arms and under powering the torso.

Hey Brasilbrasil

– Last Updated: Aug-13-05 12:27 PM EST –

The kind of boat you are trying to learn in makes a big difference. I went to pool skool and most of the boats that were provided were wide, flat, whitewater boats. They were hell to turn upside down, much less roll back upright. Luckily they had a few, narrow, skinny boats that were suitable for a beginner to learn in. I asked if I could bring my sea kayak to class... "No, it might be dirty and piss off the management here at the health club."

Don't give up. Just keep cursing. Like I said, don't be surprised if it takes you at least three class sessions before you roll.

Oh yeah... at our classes the instructors were all male and there were some cute chicks there as students. You KNOW who got most of the personal attention.

On Saturday, August 13th 2005…
Me, Paul, aka BrazilBrasil did it. I rolled the Tempest 170 RM at least 8 or nine times without aid of a paddle float or any other device.

I used a nylon spray skirt (all I have so far)

I started out cheating sort of. I put the paddle float on the other blade and used it to get myself up when I failed. This kept me from having to drag the boat to shore repeatedly and dumping it out. It also helped a bit aligning the paddle to the side of the boat to sweep the paddle.



do an upside down sit up and turn so that the paddle is on top of the water and is parallel to the boat. This puts you in a twisted position that when you glide the paddle over the top of the water and put force on the knee and thigh, you automatically engage in a torso rotation that as long as you keep your head tucked into your shoulder, don’t use the paddle for anything but a visual aid looking at the blade skimming across the water, and keep pressure on the knee and thigh, you don’t roll the boat over, you roll the boat under you. Kinda hard to explain but if done right, (at least this first way that I am learning, you don’t turn the boat at all.) You just twist it under you and you are up.

(I can just see the readers who are proficient in rolling smile slightly when reading this.) but it is an important milestone in my safety and I will continue to practice every time I go out until this becomes commonplace. Then I can work on offside and all kinds of other fun stuff!

I have the rolling class at FBO on the 27th. Can’t wait now!

I did notice though and this follows a lot with the advice on these forums that after I did it a couple of times, I seemed to forget how to do it no matter how hard I tried. I went back to shore, dumped the boat, and sat for five minutes before going out again. And I hit it first time. I had to force myself to quit thinking about it.



new mantra
keep your head down…keep your head down…damnit! keep your %^&^$$ head down you schmuck!

went out this morning. hit it once and failed next three. neck and shoulders hurt a bit…gonna stop for a day or two with the roll practice until soreness goes away. Confidence level high that I will be able to get a consistent roll.

BTW…the only reason the shoulders and neck hurt is because I didn’t “keep the head down!” go figure.


Try This…
Instead of “Keep your head down.” Try “Keep your head BACK.”

I have pretty good luck with this:

  1. Thumb up a$$. This means your non-power hand should come up over your butt as you hang upside down.

  2. C2C. This means swing your power blade out near to 90 degrees away from the boat.

  3. Lean way back. Just lean way back as you push the power blade down.

    Thumb up a$$.


    Lean way back.

    If you email me, I’d be glad to send you one of the video clips from the other day using this method.

    From one beginning roller to another.

pushing the power blade down…
Not pushing the power blade down at all…at least I don’t think so. I am using the torso and tucking my chin into the shoulder as I twist around. I fail when I don’t keep the head down.

This is where the finesse part comes in where you do a balancing act of skimming the blade on the surface and generating the speed and torque to roll the boat up with your knees and torso.



Belated congrats
Sounds like you may need to let those muscles catch up.

Should be pretty effortless when it works (main thing I noticed when I first got mine). The only stess being form the blown ones!

Sorry I missed you Saturday!

FYI: I saw on public access channel announcent -(not sure where else to get this info) that GE park as been closed to swimming/fishing/etc. - due to high bacteria levels. Still OK to launch, but nothing else. City is monitoring. Hope they also announce the all clear. Maybe there’s a city website for this stuff? I’ll have to look.

trying to do me in are ya?
so, you don’t tell me about the free parking and now you tell me that the time I spent dunking myself probably is going to cause a case of the “trots” sometime real soon.

Hmmm. Not sure if it is safe to have you give me advice anymore.

Happy birthday tomorrow by the way. Congrats on 43!

Well, I’m probably just getting senile!

Since it hasn’t been raining much around the park lately - and runoff is the usual culprit - I suspect the bacteria levels may be old news, unless this is more of a heat related thing mid-late Summer(?). Park pond area is aerated (you may have noticed the three bubbling spots) and there is a lot of watter exchange just outside there with tides. No matter what, it has to be better than the canal I launch into! Can’t roll in it as it’s full of muck.

I did pick up an ear infection a couple months ago aftre rolling there - which was a first -but I was in the water a lot helping Kim get her first rolls - at a shallow spot - near a runoff drain (depth was perfect and little beach by the bridge was full of jet skis, ski boats, and kids). Maybe I need to pay more attention to this water quality stuff or just paddle off the beach more.