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Old 04-24-2008   #1
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 2
Foot numbness

I am a new paddler. I am 6 ft with size 14 feet. I am paddling a Dagger ID 6.9 that a friend gave me. My left foot and lower leg goes numb very quickly in the boat. I know the boat is a little small for me and I am curious about solutions that don't involve buying a new boat. What causes the numbness? My feet have a little wiggle room. Are there any stretching routines that should help?

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Old 04-24-2008   #2
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 136
how are your hip pads? If the hip pads are too tight that can press on that artery in there. You want a snug fit, but not an overly tight one.

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Old 04-24-2008   #3
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Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 47
The problem is usually with the hip pads (arteries, as stated before) or with the angle that your legs are bent at.

I have had good results with just changing things around, nothin specific, but yeah...the hips are probably the problem.
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Old 04-24-2008   #4
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Thought-criminal, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 989
It's actually the sciatic nerve or the sacral plexus that forms the nerve as it exits your lower back. The hip pads might be the culprit, but more often it's the position of your backband. Tweek these and you may partially alleviate the issue.
I hope in the future Americans are thought of as a warlike, vicious people, because I bet a lot of high schools would pick "Americans" as their mascot. -Jack Handy
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Old 04-25-2008   #5
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 505
This is pretty funny. A physician seeking the advice of kayakers on why his feet go numb. Classic. Way to smart up the answer BSOE.
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Old 04-25-2008   #6
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 400
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It can also be your seat. In my old Wavesport boat my seat was causing the problem. Jackson sweet cheeks solved it.
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Old 04-25-2008   #7
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Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1984
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,879
I always found that my feet go numb at the beginning of the season no matter what; even though I haven't bought a new boat in a while. THe numbness goes away after the first couple of runs of the season, as my body gets used to being in a boat again....
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Old 04-26-2008   #8
Evergreen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 316
I paddle a project 45 and am 5 11 with size 10 feet. I am way outside of the range for the boat. I got it because i paddle in the front range more often than not so wanted a low volume boat. Suffice it to say I am crammed into the thing which should result in sleepy feet.

I do not need hip pads in my boat and I took the thigh braces out. this gave me some more room. I would agree with the advice given around hip pads and back bands and both can reduce circulation.

To compensate for taking all of the outfitting out I bought a happy thruster combo. After kayaking for 15 years I have to say that next to boat design this is my favorite inovation to hit the sport. Its an inflatable bag that goes underneath your thighs, holding pushing/holding them upwards into your thigh braces. The result is that I am snug in the boat with with out a ton of acute pressure in any one area. The result is that even though I am in a very small boat my feet are staying awake and I am comfortable.

All of that being said since you are a beginner i would suggest seeing if you can somehow demo these things first just to make sure that you can get out of the boat in the event of a swim. At the same time it may help to provide some flotation!

Pretty soon I will start heading down to golden I would be happy to let you try mine!
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Old 04-26-2008   #9
Tucson, Arizona
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 21
I have suffered a DVT ( blood clot ) before so when ever one of my feet begins to go numb it really freaks me out , It is something I never want to go through again. I have found in both my playboat and creek boat that when ever I get a break I lay as far back as I can with my back on the deck and get my weight off my butt while pointing my toes It really helps with numbness. Make sure you stretch often and get out of your boat when you need to. Blood clots suck bad
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Old 04-26-2008   #10
Gypsum, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 221
Wow I can sit in my super star for several hours and never feel a thing.. My old boats I went through what all you are talking about but not my Jackson.. Lol I would vote for the the hip pads also..

happy thruster combo
Yes this does make a big difference since it holds your knees in place and you don't have to over tighten your feet...But I just use a beach ball, works just as good and for $0.99 you can't beat it.

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