torso rotation and hip rash

In trying to concentrate on torso rotation saturday

in rough water I developed a rash. At the belt

line about two inches long. Thinking that I may

need to buy paddle shorts…has anybody had this


Get a soft nylon bathing suit and nylon runner’s shirt for summer paddling, and rub some desitin on the rash. You’ll be fine in a day or so.

Ditch all the cotton clothes you have when paddling — cotton causes all kinds of problems, including hypothermia (In cooler weather), rashes, and chafed armpits (Ouch!!!).


A commercial opportunity
I’ve had the same problem, esp. on long trips. I’ve been looking for a one piece suit like a shorty farmer john (or jane in my case), that’ not made of neoprene but a quick dry material for summer paddling. Nothing is on the market that fits the bill as far as I can tell. I wear a one piece swimsuit and shorts.


The material you speak of does exist. It is a fabric from England called Aquatherm that is made into products from a company called Reed Chillcheater. My company has just started importing the products and I have been using the products for some time now with great success. You can check out the products at and buy the products here in the US at


not only clothing
Yeah, when paddling any distance, I am acutely aware of what I chose to wear.

But in addition, consider what else is abrading you- a backrest, even a floating backband. Several years ago I looked at my race kayaks, none of which have backbands, none of which have given me holes in my backside, even after paddling marathons

You can guess what I did next to my sea kayaks- removed the backbands! Haven’t had much in the way of abrasion since. Better rotation, too.

Look at it this way, if you were experimenting with rotation and got rubbed hard, it told you that you rubbed right!


rotation rash
Ok, but I can’t believe its normal for someone with

good rotation, on a two day voyage stopping on

day two, to layover due to friction rash. Well,

lets put it this way, I haven’t read anything from

anybody with this problem.It seems I might have

an overly tight fit in my boat.In rough water I

need to be tight, to roll, if possible, or at

least to take a shot at it…

key word normal
Yeah, you’re right, very few paddlers have this issue. But then, as noted in other threads, very few truly make good use of torso power.

Before I took out my backbands, even when I was playing with careful clothing combinations, I could get a nasty, painful abrasion after only a few hours. I remember one 7day trip that started poorly on the first day…come to think of it, that is when I though of my race boat, and took out the backband on the second day. Made the trip a doable enterprise.

Interesting that as my wife has improved her performance by improving her torso rotation, she took out her backband as well, without my prompt.

As for rolling, well, I would suggest that you do not need a backband at all. The reasons are numerous- rolling requires a freedom of rotation as well; hmm, my WW canoe does not have backbands, only thigh straps, and it is easy to roll; a neighbor of mine who is a researcher of Greenland kayak history and technique termed backbands “anti rolling devices”.

If you have decent connection for your thighs, it should be enough to roll.


Might be the seat or seat back …
Maybe try to back way off on the backband or remove it … once you get the torso rotating muscles used to things, you will have little use for the BB… IMO

Another thing to check out ;

These are (one of) the original and still the best surf shorts you can buy … They are two layer and work perfect for paddling as the outer slides against the inner. They dry in a couple minutes and wear like iron … my wife says they are my ‘uniform’. Fun company to deal with too… tell 'em the sales tax paper guy sent you.

Hey Falcon
You may have an interest in sponsorship and Im sure they need the assistance. In yesterdays copy of the Fort lauderdale Sun-sentinel newspaper there was an article about 2 girls planning to row the atlantic from Spain to Antigua.

I bet they would love some good paddling wear and maybe work to your companies advantage. 50-60 days rowing in soggy clothing can make a mighty ugly mess of a person.