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Rolling Practice on Dry Land

The aim of this film is to help you roll a Sea Kayak. It works very differently to other rolling films you may have seen. For instance, we ask you not to watch it all the way through but to watch sections. Then practice. Then return. You'll need to work with friends and a video camera to record and watch your attempt. Gordon will give you the knowledge to coach yourselves. Gordon will demonstrate the most common reasons a roll fails. You'll compare your attempts with these. Spotting the reason a roll isn't working is difficult but we'll help you to do it. Then Gordon will suggest two different fixes for each mistake. Techniques you can use to correct what is going wrong and hopefully learn to roll.

And, rather than feeling for it, I want you to look for the blade being flat on the surface.

You don't have to learn in a swimming pool. We're here because the underwater pictures are clearer. You do have to work with other people and you should use a video camera. A phone camera will be just fine. No video can teach you to roll, you have to do that yourself. But, we'll give you all the help you'll need.

For me, rolling is about being upright and breathing air. How we get there isn't that important but there's a lot of things we can do to make it easier. So, what I want to do is just run through some exercises on the pool side to start with. Just with our hands and our bodies so we get an idea and then we'll start introducing things like paddles and boats and then we'll get into the water and do some other exercises in there.

I'm sure you'll have seen kids walking like that anyway so they get a wee bum wiggle. So what we want to do is just that idea of keeping our shoulders nice and level and we're lifting one bum cheek and lifting the other bum cheek. The idea of lifting one bum cheek and then lifting the other one. The next thing we're going to do is lying over to the side. So, we're going to lie on this side with out hands out to the side. We're going to be pushing down on our hands and trying to put our bum back onto the ground before we do anything else. So, we're going from that position there and putting our bum onto the ground and then sitting up. Do you want to see that again? So what we're trying to do is to get our bum back onto the. . . both bum cheeks on the ground and our body still out to the side before we sit up.

The problem is if we try and sit up too early, we're using all shoulders and when we're using the paddle in the water that means the paddle sinks to the bottom because it's not solid, the water's not nearly as solid as the ground is here. Just the idea of you move over pushing down on our hands and trying to rotate our hips up to sit flat on the ground.

So try to keep your shoulders as still as possible. If you want another model, if you use either Lisa or Karen as your models, their shoulders aren't really moving much and it's all just their hips that are doing the work. Try the other one where you're lying over with your hands down on the ground and see if you can come up.


They may feel they're doing this correctly but on the video you can see what's really happening. Soon we'll ask you to video yourself doing these exercises. When you watch it back, you will know whether you're doing what Gordon demonstrated. If your roll isn't working on the water, you might need to return to this session in the rolling clinic.

The video clip shown above is an edited segment taken from the DVD: Sea Kayak with Gordon Brown Vol. 3

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