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I have been paddling well over 15 years. Last week i suffered some major carnage afeter not being able to roll. Now it seems i can't right my boat at all, i know this is all in my head ( that still throbs from the concussion ) . For the time i seem to have lost it, my confidence and skill or the ability to believe in my ability. Has this happened to you?:confused:
 

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Yes- the dreaded "Shanks". I think most boaters hit a rough patch like this, if you're kayaking long enough. It'll pass. It's certainly in your head, so the more you agonize over it the worse it'll get. Go to a reservoir with a 6 pack and work on your roll. The booze will help keep the mental frustration as bay & keep your humor.
 

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Back to basics...

I took 3 years off when I had kids and came back to it with a sloppy roll. My 2cents are that you'll just need to get back to the basics and to strengthen the muscles associated with hip snap. I think that most folks gravitate toward the sweep with experience but, if you've been out for some time, you might go back to more of a C2C roll.

...I know we could skin the sweep vs. c2c all day so please refer to past threads on that beaten horse.

PS/more importantly - Things are starting to crank out there. Prepare yourself for river safty. Round up your bro's/bra's and take the swiftwater rescue class. It's fun and you won't believe what you're missing. If you already have, PRACTICE what you've learned, do Z drag races around the camp fire (actually a great drinking game) and keep looking over your shoulder to be sure your buds are safe even on the easy stuff.

chris
 

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Yep, that's where I'm at right now. I went an entire season without flipping two seasons ago and then last season proceeded to get pummeled cause my roll sucked. Took a shot to the head that made my neck sore for 6 months. I used to have a 100% bombproof roll. But not flipping an entire season I think made me lose the muscle memory. I've seen it happen to a lot of good boaters who lose their technique but can get away with it, but then it just gets worse and they start carping. On my fifth roll attempt one time last year I started getting pissed cause I've never missed a roll before, and then I realized my head was coming up first. Hit my roll next try. I was still able to do on-side and off-side paddle and hand rolls when I thought about it, but the muscle memory isn't there anymore to make quick rolls in Class V without thinking about it.

So for me, I'm going to start playboating alot more and get the muscle memory back.
 

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I have had a few carnage moments that have seriously rattled me and effected my fundamentals (scattered, ineffective paddle strokes, bad rolling techniques) you are totally right, it is in my opinion primarily a mental thing where your fight and flight instincts override your ability to rationally roll up and stay safe. But this isn't news to you if you have been paddling for 15 years. Paddling is such a mental game and the only person you have to defeat or be beaten by is yourself.

I am fascinated by this whole concept and the constant battle that ensues when on the river when running hard whitewater or just battling through a junky roll, such a healthy battle. Not that you are looking for advice but this is a great opportunity to re-tool your fundamentals and perfect your game to a higher degree (we are stronger when we beat this stuff). Get back at it and bomb proof your roll and go stomp the rapid that got in your head! And I can't speak for everyone on here but I would wager a guess that most people deal with this to varying degrees at one point or another during their time as paddlers, I certainly know I have.

fight the good fight, stay on the river. hope your head gets feeling better.

Scott
 

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Bad day

When I was on my game, I had a day at westwater where I had my helmet torn off, lost my paddle in skull, flipped in nearly every rapid. I still look back on that day and think WTF. Next time out everything was normal. What makes that happen sometimes? Wich I knew. Certainly know I was gripping that day on stuff that I would have literally done blindfolded before I enterred the canyon. Weird stuff happens with tis sport. Go to the pond or lake and get those basics back for a a day maybe? good luck.
 

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i had one hell of a mental fight last season in my brain with running rapids, confidence, and execution. it was so bad i didn't even look for the line in double trouble. not my style...

heres the the one image i will forever have burned in my brain and im thankful for being able to witness the moment... it was a lesson that i needed to relearn..

when we learned how to ride a back, when we crahsed we were sat back on that bike and we tried again. some on our own, some forced by parents... to the story now...
big south this last season... the one person who has probably tought the most valuable lesson ever would have to be Pete S.(lotswater) we were at cool world... i see Pete fire up... he ended up swimming out... and all the sudden i see pete heading back to the top... putting in and giving her again... cool world to me is one of those drops that could leave you humbled for a while if you got worked in it just right and their was this boater this creeker, who had just swam the same rapid putting and and given her like it was nobodies business. ive had a bunch of time to think and everytime i thought about kayaking, my future in kayaking and if its really what i want. i always pictured that moment at Cool world and Pete. lesson of the story never give up; as pete has said in the new testiment.

so take the lesson you learned, work the rolls till you can hand roll without thinking about it and get in their and stompt that B*t*h of a rapid 2 times over.. and don't ever look back...

you have been boating for 15 years like you said somebody like yourself more than likely is so addicted you won't be the same without it. don't ever give up. you got it.

remember when you first learned to roll im sure you didn't hit the first time and you tried again... not any different now.
 

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damn canada you thought your grammar was bad, ahahah.

and one more to add i have to agree with ride on; you will become stronger from this, ive never been so hungry for water in my life after the most mentally frustrating year of my life.
 

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Same thing happened to me after many years of kayaking. I know exactly why it happened: I was creeking all the time and not playboating at all.

This season I'm trying to playboat more consistently in order to make sure my roll stays bomber.

In a demonstration of my new-found dedication to playboat therapy I'm going to the playpark today instead of running Black Rock at primo flow levels. I've run Black Rock hundreds of times and I can't get enough, but I have to call a stop to going creeking every single day I go paddling.
 

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i didn't say what happened the second time. doesn't really matter cause sacking up and immediately running the shit you just swam is what life is all about. moral of the story, never give up.

thanks for the lesson Pete. didn't want to go overboard with the swim shit i don't want the river gods pissed.
 

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Same thing happened to me after many years of kayaking. I know exactly why it happened: I was creeking all the time and not playboating at all.

This season I'm trying to playboat more consistently in order to make sure my roll stays bomber.

In a demonstration of my new-found dedication to playboat therapy I'm going to the playpark today instead of running Black Rock at primo flow levels. I've run Black Rock hundreds of times and I can't get enough, but I have to call a stop to going creeking every single day I go paddling.

wierd--I have my playboat on the rack today for exactly this (and everybody else's who've said essentially the same thing) reason (although I'm not a black rock boater, I run LCC, #'s, etc., mostly)--I swam at ender rock in the numbers on sunday in the boil line that kept pushing my paddle down, because after two weak roll attempts/carping breaths, I didn't have the psychological guts to hang with it and wait out the boil--arrrrgh!

so I run LCC last night, 1st time for the season, only 2nd year running it tho--ran it fine, even rolled up in elbow falls after a missed eddy...but man, talk about psyched out--I was sweatin' it all day at work, and I could barely breath at the put-in and for the first minute or so--but then I settled down and re-realized how much dang fun this sh*t is and had a great, great time.

but--the whole "only running downriver" and "avoiding-rolling on downriver" has definitely lead to a weaker, less reliable roll in my case, and that has messed with my mind--so I too am gonna do a lot more playboating this season to make the roll absolutley automatic, effortless, instinctive again, in hopes of slaying the "fck, I don't want to swim!" thoughts bogeyman
 

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I swam in the gnarrows race last year...

but at least I didn't swim twice in exactly the same way at Cool World.

Me in the eddy, "Oh man. Not again!" Typwriter right into the cave on the left. Classic.

He may have swam twice in CW but at least he's in Ecuador at this place livin it up www.canoathrills.com

I also went playboating this morning. It's all about taking the practice to the level where even when you're upside down thinking I'm F'ed now, your body is already working on rolling your ass up. Of course, on the good days you're not thinking about anything. It all just flows.
 

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I can certainly relate. In fact I had a post last fall called "I can't give up". After a narly swim, I also lost my roll. In fact I became such a horrible boater I think I invented a new term in paddling (eddy over). I was so nervous I felt like I would throw up every time I paddled.
After time in the pool and on the lake, I am happy to say....I love boating again. In fact, just ran our local river in high water...purposely took my star (tiny boat) so I would get thrashed and be forced to roll lots. Well, It worked, I had a blast and no more swimming (for now anyway). Take it slow, try rolling in flat water, then try rolling without your paddle set up. It will come back...our brains are a powerful thing, too bad we can't remove them sometimes:wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks, for the very uplifting messages and thoughts. I will be back on the river soon. In fact heading to Colorado for a month of it. Hope to see ya out there.
Thanks Again,
Greg aka Sleepy
 

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funny you should post this. I literally just had a funk 2 weeks ago and have been talking with my crew about it...

See half way through a flooding run I got stuffed into a violent eddy, what's worse is I was under a log in it. Missed 3 rolls then somehow reached up and grabbed a branch from a tree rolled up and battled with a floating tree over my bow, branches reaching up to drown me and a few branches I am gripping ready to break above me. SCARY! Like I am thinkin of my two week old son at this point...so I get the log off and push it downstream, get out and relax for a second. By then my crew was there happy to see my head above water. Only problem is my head wasn't really above water...I swam in some class III bullshit minutes later. Was so sick I couldn't even get back in my boat and hiked out of a canyon I hardly ever roll on.

I went back to basics, got in the playboat and had some fun then ran a bigger canyon, nearly puking sick the whole way, and styled all of it.

I feel good now so it does come back! I just hope it stays!

-rg
 

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Seen it a number of times with others. I think, as others said, it comes from being out of practice, time away from your boat, muscle memory etc.

I tend to not roll very much in practice, but when you need it, you need it. What I try to do is hit a couple rolls at the beginning of a run, in current. Just flip over and do it when you are not in the meat, when your buds can bail you out.

This helps me keep the confidence up and keep the memory fresh.

Double check your outfitting too. If you are not sitting right in the boat, things can get tough.

Lost a little confidence recently rafting the Grand. Jumped in a buddy's kayak for a day and the boat was huge for me. Ran rapids fine, but honestly couldn't snap a roll in flat weater and was even a little nervious running browns a couple weeks ago. Well, got on, in my boat, and I was stylin' again...hit the numbers one week later...with the dude with the big boat, not even a roll.

Tweek and practice....then get a raft. :)
 
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