Posts Tagged ‘cartoon paddling’

Valentines Day Exchange

Posted: February 13, 2011 by Jeff Fabiszewski in Cartoon
Tags: , ,

In the USA when the 14th of February comes around loved ones exchange tokens of their affection.  We have a developed sense of humor in our family when it comes to gifts.  And in many ways humor is the best gift in a relationship.  That is why I am sharing with you this comic my wife sent me about a “possible” Valentines Day gift.  I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.   – Jeff

When I was younger, I dreamed of doing this…My son is a year old and I wonder if one day he is going to try this…

TheBuckets-kayak-02Dec2001…If he does, I will find it hard not to laugh.

I hope you enjoy this comic – Jeff

The last few weeks I have been working with a guest that wanted to learn how to roll their kayak.  It is always interesting to learn why someone wants to learn this skill.  I have also been reading Pam Forsyth’s blog posts about her journy of learning to roll: Rolling as religion, Both sides of the story, . And these things got me thinking on my own evolution as a kayaker into a paddling coach.

Some people roll for attention, others roll for necessity, and a number of paddlers know how to lessen the need of rolling.  I roll for the body awareness, stretching, and abdominal strengthening that can occur when the maneuvers are done correctly.  It can be like yoga with a boat attached to you.  However, Sean thinks that the below cartoon is why I roll.  See, he does not know how to roll…

bubblestreetstrip06June2006

Bubble Street - 06 June 2006

…without a paddle float…LOL

I never thought I needed a roll until one day the motion of the ocean taught me humility.  I had been paddling for two years…I came out of my kayak in four foot breaking swells between Mullet Key and Egmont Key, Florida.  I was shocked because I had paddled in more challenging waters.  But this time I went over, came out of my boat, and could not get back into it without the assistance of Sean.  I doubted myself, and I was a little fearful of paddling again…

After that I put my energy into perfecting emergency reentries in rough water, and learning how to roll.  It took me a long time to learn to roll.  I just could not get the rhythm down and it was painful.  Then after several rolling instructors, I met a paddling  coach that told me a secret to rolling.  It was that rolling should not be painful; furthermore, rolling was not important.  A successful roll was a sign of an unsuccessful brace.  Hence, a brace was the key to having fun on the water.  For braces truly let you naturally move without thinking.

I practiced my brace in rough and confused waters near friends that could assist me with a bow, stern, or put-across rescue.  I practiced sculling for support with a modern euro blade paddle.  Then I discovered Greenland Qajaq traditional kayak techniques and learned how to perform side sculling and chest sculling with a Greenland paddle.

jeff_qajaq_ballance_brace

balance brace

After all of those hours of practice playing on the edge between clouds and sea grass I discovered that I had not had an unplanned capsize for over a year.  But I had also developed water on the brain.  I fell in love with the allure of Greenland kayaking because it rejects modern technology to embrace the technology of history.  I also think I could have been a seal in a past life… so I started to learn how to roll with a Greenland paddle.

bubblestreetstrip12feb2008

Bubble Street - 12 Feb 2008

I can perform, as well as teach, twelve capsize maneuvers.  But I have realized that the perfect roll always looses against the perfect brace in real life applications.  Rolling improves balance, timing, and bracing.  And a perfect roll in eye shot of a non kayaker can scare off or entice them into trying out this lifestyle.

Nevertheless, playing between air and water does put things into an interesting perspective, and I always have fun when a guest learns how to lessen the chances of an unplanned capsize.

-Jeff

I am adding fuel to the fire of debate with this post.

Bubble Street 12 Feb 2008

Greenland paddlers like to say we “qajaq”.  We sometimes wear a tulik that make us look like a talking seal.  The paddle we use looks like a thin-down two by four piece of lumber.  We prefer to play between the edge of where air and water meet.  It is totally “Old School”. And for some it is all about the show of rolling.

Is going Green’ a cult?  By definition it is.  One of the common definitions of cult is “An exclusive group of persons sharing an esoteric, usually artistic, or intellectual interest”.  The rejecting of modern technology to embrace the technology of history is the sine qua non of relating to the water in a way that land lovers may never understand.

In the next few posts I will share with you why I am a Greenland style paddler.  The logic behind why I see value in paddling with several styles of paddles.  And why I enjoy teaching this traditional style of kayaking to Florida paddlers who want to improve their paddling form and feel of the water.  – Jeff