Wednesday, 30 November 2011

It must be Tuesday...

For a short period of time I am coaching three times a week.
Once on Sunday and twice on Tuesdays.
Each session is very different.

The Sunday session is an adult group of beginners and improvers who are building up knowledge of fundamentals and foundation skills. Every time I do this I remember just how much there is to think about when you are starting out. Hopefully folk in this group will want to get into sea boats next Spring and get these skills working for them outdoors. 

On Tuesdays I coach an after school junior group of beginners, the goal here is to build up a bit of knowledge and safe practice, and a feel for paddling with lots of fun and games.

On Tuesday evenings I contribute to coaching adults who are mostly determined to learn to roll and have high expectations of themselves!

Amy sets up for success.
Since beginning my own endless pursuit of Greenland rolls I feel better equipped to help with this. I really enjoy helping folk get their first few rolls. Its a great sense of achievement for us all, and recently a group of new paddlers have made fantastic progress. Thinking back at how long it took me to learn - I am continually impressed.

Ivan analyses.

Well done everyone!

For some the rolling journey will soon be pretty well complete - for others... 
 how all consuming it might become!

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Winter sunshine

Unseasonably pleasant weather. Short day. Trip or rolling practice? I chose to go roll fearful that there would not be enough time or daylight at the end of a trip to do what I feel I need to. 
 I must be addicted.

A huge plus point was Thorfinn was able to come and help with forward finish rolls. Still I am working away on reverse sweep and storm roll. Quite often practising rolling feels like maintenance of what has been achieved, checking its still there and it works. Its an attitude or frame of mind I tend to adopt in winter. Cold water, chilling winds, frozen face and hands = limited learning. Today, however, I felt like I made some progress, hard to describe why, but gradually these two rolls are feeling more and more solid and reliable. I am sure the brief sunshine helped.

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Pool versus sea

Pool is warm.

The pool is expensive.

I only get an hour at a time - just enough time to get to the stage of making progress - then I have to stop.

I don't have to wear endless layers of restricting warm gear.

It provides less buoyancy.

It's not the sea.

The sea is cold.

The sea is free.

I only manage to practice for about an hour before I get so cold I can't concentrate
(and yes! I can get my hood over the top of my tuilik).

I have to wear layers of movement restricting gear.

It provides lots of buoyancy.

It's the sea.

Either way an hour is about all I can afford.

Saturday, 12 November 2011

1 and 2 star assessment

Last weekend was the first assessment our cohort of coaches delivered. Most of the participants had been coached by us this season so it was great to be able to finally offer the assessment ourselves.
At the marina.
 The breadth of the award is challenging, particularly in our windswept islands where it can be hard to find calm and sheltered places to paddle a canoe, so it is a real achievement to build up skills with a single blade.

Stern rudder - how close can you go?
This is how you do it.

Yes, I think that worked well!

and... return to the bank.
As night fell (4.30pm) we completed a long but enjoyable day.
Well done everyone!