I’m interested in possibly buying a Kayak Ergometer in the near future. Has anyone had any experience with the Vasa Kayak Ergometer or the KayakPro Speedstroke? Which seems to be the better machine from a price and performance standpoint?
my two cents
i have a speedstroke. it’s an excellent machine, well built, feels almost exactly like paddling. very good for working on leg drive, rotation, etc. i found one used so it was a little less expensive.
i’ve never used the vasa, but it looks to me from the webpage like they basically designed one machine, mostly as a swimming trainer, and then made a bunch of add-ons to try to make it more sport specific. Just looking at the machine online, I’d be concerned about the absence of the sort of wide v shaped pulley found on the Speedstroke- that’s what allows you to really rotate and take a realistic stroke, as opposed to just simply pulling back.
there are a lot of reviews on this site for the speedstroke. i think you could buy one sight unseen and be happy with it. i know 6 or 7 people with one, all of whom like it a lot. the vasa may be an excellent machine, but i would definitely want a chance to use one for a while in a non-sales setting before committing.
We have a Vasa
and I’ve never used a speedstroke. The Vasa is hard like paddling upstream the whole time, it never get’s easier. Also with the distance it dosen’t add in glide so it only measures the amount you actually pull, which is good but alitte depressing I guess all that work and you only go a mile and a half. And that’s on the easiest setting too. But I feel like you get good stroke and rotation like on the water. The only complaint had been the seating set-up. THere is no way to stop you from sliding back, they (Vasa) are working with us on ideas how to fix this, and they are getting a seat now, we have a bench. We had to clamp a back band on the seat for now so we don’t slide back while driving with your legs during rotation. So I’m not comparing the 2 just giving you my take on the Vasa. Overall I’m very happy and feel like it will definatly increase the power in your stroke. Good luck.
I have had the Speedstroke
for 2 years now, with over 1000 miles on it. So, my take on it is:
- A great way to get a workout any time day or
night, regardless of weather. The feel and
position of the erg is very k1 like. The seat
may take getting used to, but really sets one
up for a good stroke and movement.
- Pretty good simulation of a fast kayak.
It does not perfectly simulate, but is pretty
good. What gets a higher speed readout on the
erg translates pretty well to the water.
- The benefit to stroke development (isn’t
everybody after that?) is very strong.
It encourages you to reach forward and use
the bigger torso muscles. A forward catch is
rewarded with a higher speed readout. This seems
to translate to better on the water performance.
- I use the shaft at the shortest setting. This
helps me (try to) make every stroke count. It is
remarkable how little bad strokes help forward
motion (as measured by the speedometer). And
equally impressive how measured strokes with
a good reach and catch can keep the speed up
with relatively little effort.
- The speedometer can be calibrated to pretty
closely duplicate real water effort level to
erg effort. There is a formula for this on the
Kayakpro website. This depends on paddler
performance level, as well as size and strength.
Interestingly, there is a point where one can
get the speed up on this erg, and get to
something that feels like “wave cancellation”.
- This is the only kayak erg I’ve used, so can’t
really compare it to others.
Hope this helps,
Sat on a Speedstroke at Outdoor Retailer
show for a few minutes while waiting to see a rep. I was impressed at how much it duplicated the actual feel of paddling a kayak. It was set for high resistance while I was on it, but could tell you’d get one hell of a workout on it. I use a Concept II at home and think I’d almost prefer the Speedstroke for dedicated paddle training, and I gotta say I got dramatic improvement by using the Concept II all winter. I’d have to say the Speedstroke would be ideal for paddle specific training, and the Concept II for all-around cardio workout.
Thanks for the feedback. I think I’m probably going to get a Speedstroke in the Spring.
I finally got my Speedstroke. It arrived last week. I’m trying to figure out the optimal length for my adjustable shaft. You said you put the shaft at the shortest setting. Does the shortest shaft setting provide the least resistance or is it the other way around? Does it provide a more realistic feel when it’s short? Also, have you tried adjusting the lenghth of the rope? Does that also affect resistance.