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Seriously I suck at touching my toes. I can barely touch my shins. I'm 5'10 and My hands are a good 8-12 inches away from my toes. You might be wondering what this has to do with a WW forum.

This is my sixth year of kayaking and I'm close to actually being able to competently paddle class V. A major skill set I lack is the ability to tuck. I'm so inflexible that anytime I roll I'm basically asking to take a rock to my face/entire exposed upper body. When I roll I'm perpendicular to my boat.

I get that generally you don't want to roll in class V, especially creeking, but it happens. If I run class V creeks I'm at high at risk for getting my face taken off. Also its difficult to tuck for waterfalls and punching holes in big water.... blah blah blah

Anyone have any simple advice/stretches for me to be able to touch my toes? It's gotta be simple. Something that would be helpful would be "Like try and touch your toes five times a day for 30 seconds". If its too complicated I won't do it. Also I'm not going to yoga.
 

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Sounds like you're not flexible because you're lazy and you say "I can't" and "I suck". Change your attitude to "I can", put forth some effort, and get in shape. Boating Class V isn't for lazy pessimists.
 

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I seriously doubt that your lack of flexibility is what is standing between you and padding competence, but if you really think that is the problem, I would advise you to swallow your pride and go to yoga. It certainly won't hurt your boating.


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as an old middle age fat guy I amaze folks fairly regularly that I can get my hands flat on the floor between my feet. I have to or my back explodes. Hamstring tightness can be one culprit but there is lots of stuff going on.

Don't bounce. Just go as far as you can than a little bit into muscle stretching discomfort. Then stay there until it's not. Uncomfortable that is. Then do it again and go deeper. Lather, rinse, repeat. If you feel this is truly holding you back from Class 5 greatness you need to apply yourself. Body maintenance is a lifelong thing. Even for those mighty of girth such as myself. Start your basic stretches now and do them all the time as part of life. You will be happier. If you wait until you get older, it sucks.
 

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Kettle Bells. Find a good Kettle Bell trainer and do that twice a week. There is strength training involved, but most of what you do on a beginner level is movement and body motion analysis. A good trainer will work with exactly what is hindering you (be it your hamstrings, back, neck...) As a routine it is almost custom made for kayaking.
 

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Don't be such a sissy la-la. I don't know why anyone would be opposed to yoga... it's some of the best exercise you can do for yourself, strength, flexibility and circulation are a few of the benefits. There's also several different types of yoga, so you should be able to find one that you can really enjoy. Give it a shot, you might find that it's not really just for pussies after all.
You don't have to "go to" yoga... you can do yoga at home. There are a ton of apps and articles and videos (both online and at stores) out there that will teach you the stretches... There's even some paddler-specific programs.
One of the breweries in Steamboat just started doing "yoga and a beer" to target the more masculine side of the market.
But really, just remember your basic PE stretches from high school.
 

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Hold something like lead dive weights (3, 4, or 6lb) in your hands while stretching for the floor. It may also help your abdomen when you're coming up.
 

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Yoga

Another thumbs up for yoga - no judgment, great stretches, good for balance and the spirit. Wish I started it 10 years ago!
 

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Don't listen to these clowns. Just buy an IK or a raft. You won't have to worry about rolling. Just take a nice swim right side up. I don't do yoga and aside from never being comfortable, feeling like shit, felling weak, being a minor alcoholic and not being able to sleep, I am doing fantastic!

On second thought, maybe you should try yoga.
 

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Playboat more. Supported by proper stretches and fitness you'll become much more limber. Cartwheels, loops, blast wheels, blunts, etc. all require flexability. One more reason why "I only creek" boaters take the most and often worst swims.
 

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Assuming you are a male, why wouldn't you want to go to yoga? Are you unfamiliar with what yoga pants are? Not for you to wear of course.
Also, if you have a significant other, have them assist in your stretching. Sit down on the floor, reach for your toes, have them push from behind.
-d
 

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Don't let yourself get into your kayak until you've done 30 seconds or more of stretching. That's not the most effective way to stretch, but it will keep you accountable.

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