Kayaking Technique Forum

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Re: I have to disagree
In Response To: Re: I have to agree ()

: I learned most of my kayaking through friends who are guides, I think their
: bias for re-entry is based on the fact that the often take people out in
: doubles and assisted re-entry is usually the case. Most people don't have
: a very good roll, and time just often doesn't permit a fair weather
: kayaker to master this kind of skill, they often have families and are
: very busy, and grab a few hours when they can to take a paddle, usually in
: a rented boat. This consistutes a majority of kayakers, people who can
: read the weather, paddle reasonably well, and know their limitations. So I
: guess my point is that for the average weekend paddler, practicing good,
: reliable re-entries (using a pair of neoprene gloves lashed to the deck
: rigging near the rescue aid to prevent "wooden club finger" due
: to immersion) gets these people results pretty quick. We teach students to
: work with buddies at safe beaches, practicing re-entry in progressively
: worse conditions, until it becomes routine.

: I absolutely agree with you that for folks who are really into kayaking, and
: have the time, the eskimo roll is a desirable first measure, no doubt
: about it. But for the average paddler who doesn't have much time, but
: still wants to enjoy the sport, assisted rescue or self re-entry provides
: a feeling of security, especially when the sponson deployment is mastered
: in bad conditions. Of course, we all favour anticipation of bad
: conditions, but we have all had some unexpected problems. Now that does
: raise the question of whether rolling should be mandatory, and taught as
: the primary recovery skill, and I know it has its advocates and
: detractors. But I think the student needs to master the fear of coming out
: of the boat. Paddle float and sponsons, with wetsuit, signal devices and
: neoprene gloves to maintain use of the hands in cold water, provides a
: quickly learned rescue system.

: I am much more suspicious of the T-rescue and the H-rescue and the all-in
: rescue, these look frankly impossible in bad conditions. Anyone with
: comments on the T or H rescue and experience seems to advise against them.
: But for unloaded boats, on a day paddle, they make a certain amount of
: sense.

: After having read Deep Trouble and talked to alot of kayakers, I am still not
: sure that rolling, in the end of things, saves any lives. Sorry, but the
: conditions, if bad, defeat the roll, and require measures such as sponson
: deployment, or better things to come in the future, to stabilize the craft
: and to get the hell out of the mess you paddled into. Failed rolls result
: in exposure, repeated rolls are demoralizing, especially when you have to
: fight to bring them around. Do rolls do anything other than refine bracing
: and hip leveraging skills? I haven't seen a study which compares these
: things scientifically, and perhaps that needs to be done. An analysis of
: the efficacy and reliability of different rescue procedures.....

The Roll is the most efficient rescue procedure, BAR NONE!!

It is the absolute best case scenario. The others are backups to the roll.

The roll doesn't take any longer to learn than the paddle float rescue but it has the perception of being very hard and technical. Most people learn it in 1 or 2 one hour pool sessions which is about the time it takes to learn the paddle float recovery. Both techniques have to be practiced regularly to perfect and maintain your ability.

So saying you don't have time to learn the Roll is not really true for most people. It is probably more true to say that it is harder to find someone to teach you. Make contact with a local whitewater club and get them to help you out. Most whitewater folk would help you out and would probably enjoy rolling your HUGE touring boat!!

Sponsons are not the be all and end all to safety. In fact they have some major drawbacks in larger waves. The very thing that makes a kayak managable in very rough weather is its instability. It is easy to tip but it is easy to stop it from tipping. Sponsons make your boat hard to tip up to a point but after that it is going to tip regardless and the sponsons will make it difficult or impossible for you to prevent this.

Sponsons have their place but they are not a replacement for good safety techniques!!