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Old 09-23-2004   #1
Arvada, 80003
Paddling Since: 2002
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Advancement of kayaking

I'm sure this has been discussed before. But i want to know everyones feelings about increasing the popularity of our sport. Would you like to see kayaking in the x games or on another national stage? or do we like it as it is? Any opinions you have on any related topics i would like to know.

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Old 09-23-2004   #2
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Technology Partner, Littleton, Colorado
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Advancing Kayaking is like.....

Think of yourselves like Mormon Missionaries, except you're not out riding bicycles in pairs and knocking on doors and you don't have to wear a white shirt & tie with a name badge on it.

You're at work, in the grocery store, walking the street (in a non-sexual/non-capitalistic way), people you know, meet, or that come up to you and ask you about that really cool chuck of butt-plastic you're getting into or is ridin atop your car. You mission is to educate them, encourage them, Hell.... offer to show them how it's done. Just spread the gospel of the wave wheel.

Yea, though I ride the river in the canyon of death, I shall fear no rapid. For my paddle bros are my shepherds who leadeth me over the waterfall and Z-drag my boat out when I really f##k up.

Can I get a HalleHellyeah here? It sucks to be stuck in the office with all my work caught up and the rivers are up and running...


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Old 09-23-2004   #3
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Popularity is one thing...the X Games is quite another The soul of kayaking has nothing to do with competition and has everything to do with getting out there with your bros (and lady friends) and having one hell of a good time. I love to skateboard. Skateboarding is in the X Games. BUT even in skateboarding the soul of the sport is in having a session with your friends and pushing each other to progress. The progress of a sport towards the X Games or any other televised event is almost entirely product driven. Ask any of the pro skate competitors in the X Games and I bet they will tell that they would rather just be skating witht their bros. The cool thing about events and the events and the competitions...they bring people together from all around to party, compete and to generally have a good time. These events (in some sports) also make it possible for the most talented athletes to make a living competeing. These things are coll but bottom line is...I'D RATHER BE CREEKING .
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Old 09-23-2004   #4
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yeah yup yeppers

Creeking is the original X-game sport that never got included in the X-games....dam shame too....But ESPN is the impetus behind most of the so-called extreme sporting events... they're the ones that set the tone
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Old 09-23-2004   #5
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I would watch X games if they had an "X"treme creeking race. I actually can easily see something like the Big Gun Show catching on with the public. Go Big, but not for T.V.!
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Old 09-23-2004   #6
Carbondale, Colorado
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Industry and sport growth - is greed good?

While we would all love to keep kayaking to ourselves and think that we are cooler than the masses, there are pluses and minuses to any sport gaining popularity. Mass popularization creates actual cash flow in an industry where there is none. This cash flow, in turn, allows for advancement in technology(1), salaries for athletes (2) and ultimately creates industry competetition(3).

1) R& D costs money

2) Salary allows athletes to not need supplementary jobs, giving them time to concentrate, compete and push the sport creating triple lindy space donkey godzillas that we then emulate.

3) Capital impetus (money) for smaller companies to enter the business and push technology with all the advantages that small businesses have in that vein. No big corporation to bow to. We have giant corporate entities running the industry right now because that is the only way to survive. The market is so small and margins so minute that volume is the only way to avert extinction.

If you're old enough to remember, skateboarding has been through this twice. It has survived intact and better for it each time.
There will be no less soul. The masses will just a have a little better grasp on how hard it is and there will be a ton more used boats on the market.

And I hate to tell you. With all the folks that fail to wave back when we drive by each other with boats on our roofs, it's already started. Enjoy the new technology. Enjoy the fact there are athletes that can live on the road with their entire family and own airplanes. Enjoy the fact that you can price shop for places to stay while paddling in Chile.

...and take comfort in the fact that those rivers will empty out out again when the industry/sport goes through its next low point. It will.
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Old 09-23-2004   #7
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Salida, Colorado
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I agree. More people paddling may be a short term negative to you at your local play spot but all of us were new to the sport at some point and everyone has contributed something to it becoming as cool as paddling is today. I started paddling in a Lazer and I don't want to go back. Mattyb is dead on. As the sport grows cool developments make it more fun and the soul is never really put in danger. I mean could anyone tell me that you are ever encumbered in your pursuit of whitewater paddling from anything that springs from within the industry? The threats we face come from irresponsible growth, flow availability, water quality, water projects, etc. and that is why ultimately more paddlers = more people who care about rivers and a greater voice in issues that impact us.

I am a skateboarder as well and I can say honestly that I couldn't care less about the X games other than when I am chilling, beer in hand and happen to stumble across it on makes better viewing than a lot of crap but does not necessary covey what is cool to me about skateboarding. Events growing within paddle sports is a great piece to the marketing puzzle and can be super fun and that is really it.
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Old 09-23-2004   #8
Join Date: Oct 2003
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I kind of feel that the rivers, creeks, and playparks are full enough.

I also feel that there is enough competition in boat making and other equipment. The stuff is cheap enough and the technology is good and getting better pretty fast. True, when the technology is finally more stable, perhaps boat prices can drop by 50% by making them in China. But, I'm not sure that would be a big improvement.

All in all, boaters are pretty cool. Things are pretty good now.

The sport doesn't need bigger exposure.

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