Getting comfortable in rough conditions

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Prof. Salt
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Location: Corpus Christi - or paddling over the horizon

Getting comfortable in rough conditions

Post by Prof. Salt »




I wrote this up for the Viking page on FB, but it works for anyone wanting to get better to handle offshore challenges. Most of the challenge of any offshore trip is centered around navigating the surf. After that it's just a fishing trip on a really big body of water. But the surf is where lots of gear can be lost, including a fishbag full of hard-earned fish (been there, done that). In my mind, the better you can prepare, the better you will handle those challenges. If you have a skinny kayak, use it to develop your skills so that the fishing kayak becomes easy to handle in the chop.

"One of the best parts of using a kayak to workout in sloppy conditions is the wide variety of muscles used; it's not just a shoulder thing. If you ditch the seat and push the boat, your effort can become a core, chest, shoulder and even thigh workout. Is it cardio? Absolutely. Will you get thirsty? Yes, so pack some water bottles in the hatch. Your ability to handle the kayak plays a huge part, and if you want to improve your confidence in rough water there is nothing better than heading into rough conditions to learn. Always wear your PFD but if the water temps are comfortable, go start the learning process. You might be surprised at how much you can improve. I also included a few shots that show a surprisingly busy rudder effort to keep the boat tracking along in a relatively straight line as it scoots on the waves.
A year ago I was not as excited about paddling the Oxygen in these conditions because I couldn't control the boat very well. I did it anyway because, well, I'm not normal 😆and I wanted to get better. After months of paddling in the slop and pushing my comfort levels, those paddling skills have improved enough that I rarely end up in the water. These days I really enjoy the challenging moments when a wave throws me a curve ball and tries to turn me over. Balance improvement is one benefit you'll pick up by training in these conditions, but learning to brace with the paddle AS you paddle is also a major skill that improves the stability and feel as you negotiate sloppy waters. The DJI action camera used has a fantastic "stability" setting that prevents viewers from getting seasick, but you can still see how much movement is taking place, and it gives you a taste of why it's a dynamic and fun way to improve skills while keeping in shape.
When you begin the process, start in an area where you have to go upwind first and then can play as you head back to the launch. If you launch and paddle downwind to play (that happens to be what is available for me), there is a price to pay at the end of the workout... and that can be painful if your skills aren't up to the task."
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Killerbee
Posts: 399
Joined: Wed Jun 07, 2017 7:37 am

Re: Getting comfortable in rough conditions

Post by Killerbee »

Prof. Salt wrote:


I wrote this up for the Viking page on FB, but it works for anyone wanting to get better to handle offshore challenges. Most of the challenge of any offshore trip is centered around navigating the surf. After that it's just a fishing trip on a really big body of water. But the surf is where lots of gear can be lost, including a fishbag full of hard-earned fish (been there, done that). In my mind, the better you can prepare, the better you will handle those challenges. If you have a skinny kayak, use it to develop your skills so that the fishing kayak becomes easy to handle in the chop.

"One of the best parts of using a kayak to workout in sloppy conditions is the wide variety of muscles used; it's not just a shoulder thing. If you ditch the seat and push the boat, your effort can become a core, chest, shoulder and even thigh workout. Is it cardio? Absolutely. Will you get thirsty? Yes, so pack some water bottles in the hatch. Your ability to handle the kayak plays a huge part, and if you want to improve your confidence in rough water there is nothing better than heading into rough conditions to learn. Always wear your PFD but if the water temps are comfortable, go start the learning process. You might be surprised at how much you can improve. I also included a few shots that show a surprisingly busy rudder effort to keep the boat tracking along in a relatively straight line as it scoots on the waves.
A year ago I was not as excited about paddling the Oxygen in these conditions because I couldn't control the boat very well. I did it anyway because, well, I'm not normal Imageand I wanted to get better. After months of paddling in the slop and pushing my comfort levels, those paddling skills have improved enough that I rarely end up in the water. These days I really enjoy the challenging moments when a wave throws me a curve ball and tries to turn me over. Balance improvement is one benefit you'll pick up by training in these conditions, but learning to brace with the paddle AS you paddle is also a major skill that improves the stability and feel as you negotiate sloppy waters. The DJI action camera used has a fantastic "stability" setting that prevents viewers from getting seasick, but you can still see how much movement is taking place, and it gives you a taste of why it's a dynamic and fun way to improve skills while keeping in shape.
When you begin the process, start in an area where you have to go upwind first and then can play as you head back to the launch. If you launch and paddle downwind to play (that happens to be what is available for me), there is a price to pay at the end of the workout... and that can be painful if your skills aren't up to the task."
Your a savage proffesor!

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