Roll With Your Hat?

Yes, I will start off the season working on my roll again. I do want to get a new hat with a little more sun coverage, and I wonder if I should have any concern about it falling off while attempting to roll. Do you rollers look for anything when buying a hat to keep it on your head while upside down.


I usually
take my hat off when I practice rolls, its just simpler that way.

I usually take mine off too.
Otherwise it has a tendency to flutter around right in front of my face.

But Then…
What would you do when you need to roll not for practice? I have a neoprene dive hat right now that works pretty well upside down, but it doesn’t afford much sun protection for the neck and perrhaps even the face.


usually wear a ball hat with a strap on the back…if it’s warm enough to just roll for cooling off I just roll. I have longer hair , I tie it in a ponytail. I put a hair tie on the back strap for the hat…when paddling in high winds or rolling , I always have the hair tie wraped around my pony tail, so that my hat just flips off either from the wind or from rolling and it just hangs down my back from my pony tail…If I’m going to do a lot of rolling , then I put on a fuzzy rubber hat that has a nose plug dangling from it’s strap.

If I’m just going out to practice rolls , and not really go anywhere…Then I wear a tuilik.

Best Wishes


at that point…
the hat is probably the least of your worries. If you’re in stuff where capsizes are more likely (surf, whitewater, tidal races, etc.) you’re probably wearing a helmet rather than a hat.

With that said, I’ve rolled with boonies and ball caps before but it’s just easier to take it off and shove it under your deck bungees.

wear it
I have a Kavu hat - something similar to this one I just tighten the strap under my neck and roll. Stay one just fine. And wet or dry, the hat does just fine.

I don’t see the problem
If you are just practicing your roll, then do whatever. No reason to lose a perfectly good hat. But then if you are practicing for conditions you might encounter, then wear what you would wear normally. If you lose a hat, then maybe your need to revise what you wear and how you wear it.

With A Tilley
it’s no problem. The double strap arrangement will keep it on your head through rolls and lots more. Keeps the sun off your head very nicely, as well.


Not always
Got eaten by a wave in the surf zone today and my Tilly was in front of my face when I got back up.

Take a look at these…
… videos and see what hats people are wearing:

1st Roll

Greenland Rolling with Dubside

EJ’s Rolling and Bracing

Is headgear really your focus going into another season? Did you run out of gadgets/gimmicks to fuss around with? Stop stalling! Get rolling!

Recap of last season’s advice: Keep it simple. Think less, practice more. Use less, achieve more. Jay’s method is your best bet working alone. Add EJ’s simplicity and Dubside’s attitude to keep you head straight and clear. Make it fun. Play not struggle.

Now get too it!

and …
wear a hat


My favorite summer paddling hat is a cap with a back flap and a leash, like this one. It usually stays on for a quick “rotary cooling” roll, but if I’m going to be practicing I stow it until I’m done.

Cord under the neck
And the hat fills with water and chokes you… can be rolled around but it is pretty distracting.

One solution is to use a clip from the top of your paddling jacket or whatever, in back, to the back of the hat. Then use a hat that will collapse rather than fill with water in the case of an unplanned capsize.

For practice - hood yeah but haven’t gotten on with hats for that.

Noy easing off on trying to roll
I totally agree that rolling is about technique and not gear. However, with my sister battling an agressive cancer, and my wife having cacerous skin patches removed, I can’t help but worry about sun protection a bit more this season. If I do get a roll that works this season, I would like progress it to more realistic conditions, and not worry about losing my sun protection when it happens.

Good to hear from you Greyak…LOu

Waterproof suncreen…
… under you hat. The spray-ons seem to mess up my grip less.

3000 hours of sunlight a year here. Multiple layers of defense -just like rolling.

Thanks All For Your Help
I think i will go for angstrom’s hat.


but how long
would it take you to put your hat back on after a practice roll?

If sun protection is a major concern…
… and $ is not top priority, then be sure to check out Coolibar and Rail Rider products if you’re not already familiar.

Had a couple other companies I can’t remember right now.

I should take much more care than I do. Only thing that I regularly give good UV protection to is my eyes.

Grace under pressure
It’s good practice keeping your cool to roll with a hat that has flopped foreward over your face:=)

I have a cheap canvas hat that has come off in an unexpected roll. The first time was a real comedy, luckily with no witnesses. I was practicing braces on the move in the Yakima River delta (water was warmer than elsewhere). Went over, hat flopped in front of my face, paddle hit the silty bottom and I bailed. Had the hat but my paddle never surfaced. Took a while feeling with my feet to find it stuck in the mud.

Second time was stroke practice and I got confused as to what I was trying to do, went over but ignored the errant hat and rolled up with the hat floating behind me. Unfortunately, Flatpick had it all on video :frowning: Got to see that one in slow motion a few times…