Tuesday, 17 November 2015

I'm rollin'

There's a significant advantage to having the founder of Fluid Kayaks and designer of all Fluid's boats in your life. Your boat ownership ranking goes up and you have access to a fleet of his boats too. Although he's no longer involved in the running of the company, all of the kayaks produced by Fluid are his designs.

For xmas last year I asked Celliers to teach me how to roll. This is a white water kayaking skill where you're able to right yourself (in your kayak) should you capsize. The idea is not to end up upsidedown, but it happens. And if you can roll right-way-up again instead of swimming - all the better.

Finally, on Saturday, we went to a friend's house to use his pool and Celliers taught me how to roll. I've got a lovely, green Fluid Bazooka.

We started with basics, like capsizing and staying underwater to get the feel of being upside down in the kayak. And then popping the spraydeck to swim out. And then lots of hip-rolling drills holding on to the side of the pool. Then capsizing with the paddle in your hand and popping the spraydeck to swim and then starting to learn the paddle motion to provide resistance to use your hips to roll the kayak right-way-up.

There's only one problem.

I get really queasy! I don't have a strong sea constitution and while my tolerance lasted for a considerable time, all the rolling and bobbing on the water started to turn me green!

I had to get out a few times (fast!) to sit on the side of the pool. I couldn't even look at the kayak bobbing on the water!

Fortunately I don't get seasick paddling down a river, but if I am just sitting in the boat and bobbing... and especially if I'm bobbing and have to focus on something - like getting the spraydeck on... goodness. My tummy turns.

By the end of the session I'd done a number of rolls on my own but I wasn't up to getting on the river. So we had a picnic on the bank instead.

I'm keen for another - shorter session - on the pool. My constitution should be good enough to head down to the river to play there a bit. And then I'm in for a session on the river. The water is very low, but there are decent sections.

I'm really excited about improving my river skills and especially to learn a new paddle discipline - white water kayaking. Parys is such a wonderful lifestyle location for river fun.

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