Are we over teaching strokes? Episode 3, Whitewater Troubleshooter - Mountain Buzz

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Old 12-03-2012   #1
Charlotte, North Carolina
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 19
Are we over teaching strokes? Episode 3, Whitewater Troubleshooter

Good morning,

In this latest episode of the Whitewater Troubleshooter I am purposefully stirring the pot, a bit. This episode is very much a preemptive strike to next weeks episode of "Momentum." This week however we talk about the problems that arise when we teach folks strokes. This is not a simple how to on taking strokes but delves a bit deeper into the effect the strokes have on the body, balance and boat. In turn it also discusses the effect the dynamics of the boat have in the role of strokes.

I look forward to the discussion that may ensue from the next two episodes. Please, if you enjoy, share with others and open this discussion to others.

Episode 3, Are strokes over taught?
Whitewater Troubleshooter Blog Archive Are strokes over taught? Episode 3

Video only:
Whitewater Troubleshooter - Stroke Concepts - Episode 3 - YouTube

Chris Wing
H2o Dreams

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Old 12-03-2012   #2
BryanS.'s Avatar
Prineville, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 308
Just watched episode 2. Great info. Just moving the hip pads up makes my boat much more comfy. Working on custom foam now and was wondering, which type of adhesive should I use to glue foam to the boat? I'm gonna use some to cushion my heels as well.
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Old 12-03-2012   #3
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Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 226
Hey Chris, nice work and I enjoy the project. I too am interested in knowing where the threads will go regarding technique. As a kayak instructor I'm always trying to progress and learn from others. I read the article and have yet to view the production. So...after reading the article I'm wondering about progression of strokes i.e. introduction and implementation. There's so much to this topic. The greatest single factor I believe is "how much time with the student". I see a lot of weekend courses that blow through paddle strokes including rolling in 2 days bombarding the paying student with so much information, it would be amazing they could absorb anything at all!! I work in a program that dedicates 1 week (either expeditionary style on a river with raft support) or at a lodge where the progression is methodical and proven. Students get both flat water and moving water time and the emphasis isn't on what stretch you ran, rather on how well you paddled it. Even "expert" students are given strategies and repetition on easier grade WW to challenge them. Gates are thrown in when appropriate.

You mention no attacking the "old hat methods". Which ones specifically are you referring to?

Cheers and hope to paddle with you sometime.
To air is human, to get big air divine.
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Old 12-03-2012   #4
Charlotte, North Carolina
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Mar 2011
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No definitive answer

I have seen a variety of methods used over time all of which have had success. I think the main thing that we as instructors need to be careful of is not how we teach but on having outcomes that are desirable for students as well as presentation where we do not have to back track on. I.e. lean downstream when leaving an eddy, but when it's times to learn to pivot, squirt, slide, glide, etc we break that "rule"

This project is just a start, and I hoped that it really does start some more critical thought as opposed to the traditional outlined format we have been teaching for far too long.

In response to what glue to use, I personally use DAP Weldwood Contact Cement. Thanks for the feedback!
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