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Old 05-03-2008   #11
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 148
The back deck roll should only be used when playboating. Yeah its fast but as mentioned, you are exposing your face to potential hazards. It was initially used to roll quickly after ENDERING! Yea!
I've seen this BS espoused before. The best roll when creeking is the one that gets you up safely AND quickly. Clearly, you don't want to be floating face-down over mank, but you also don't necessarily want to be drifting into your next big class V move studiously setting up your C-C.

There is no specific paradigm as to when you should or should not use a specific roll. A good paddler with a good feel for the water innately knows what roll he should be hitting at that particular time.

I personally use a back deck often while creeking; and if you ask lotsawater's wife she will be sure to tell you that I'm still strikingly more handsome than he.

I will destroy you.
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Old 05-04-2008   #12
Boof it like you stole it
G-wood Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 83
Be strong!

Just my two bits worth, be aggressive with your gut! Yes, keep your elbow tight (I try to bring my right elbow to my left shoulder, try to choke yourself with your bicep), but when it comes time to pull through, don't pull down with your paddle, instead, think about doing a stomach crunch. The 'crunch' pulls the blade through the water and completes the roll, and if you don't complete the roll, it has you set up leaning forward (safer position) so you're ready for your 'normal' roll!

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Old 05-04-2008   #13
KSC's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,032
I agree with the majority here. Keep the paddle shaft head level or below and elbows in and it will not put undo stress on the shoulders.

I just learned the back deck roll last season and have been working on making it more automatic over the winter. What I found was that when I first learned it, I learned it like the guy in your video. You get more leverage reaching out and it makes it easier. After reading up more on the roll I realized I needed to learn to keep my shoulders lower. Once you have the movement, this is easy to refine. Most of the roll comes from the torso and you only need apply a small amount of pressure to the blades.

After training myself to go to this roll in the pool, on the river I now find myself going to this roll all the time and wish I'd learned it earlier in my kayaking career. The reliable speed of the roll has me sold. Not to say there's no place for your standard sweep/c-c, but I'm really enjoying having the backdeck in the arsenal. That's my pitch to not write it off just yet.
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Old 05-04-2008   #14
Hood River, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2163
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 295
Keep your elbows in a box while you do it. If you reach out with your arms you are putting a lot of pressure on your shoulder and basically doing a high brace.

I would also agree that it is sometimes acceptable to use a back deck style roll while creeking. Obviously don't use it in a place full of shallow mank but there are times where the fastest roll is the best roll. Really, there comes a point where you roll from whatever position you flip in, never mind the name. It might be a labeled roll or just a jumbled combination of techniques or even just a huge hip snap/push with little technique. So yeah, I think the 'no back deck while creeking' theory is not really useful. It depends on your situation at the time, make your own call.

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