Mountain Buzz banner
1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
446 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Obviously your ferrying (back) stroke is much more powerful. Are there any tips or better ways to increase the power of your forward stroke to build momentum/speed for certain waves/rapids you wish to power through? Any other skills or exercises or perhaps different/recommended ways to set up your boat to accommodate this or would there be too many trade offs? Any relevant products that are better for this? Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,261 Posts
I do seem to notice a difference with quality carbon fiber and fiberglass oars, compared to my old carlisle. The flex they have does seem to provide extra power right near the end of the stroke.

Using your skeletal structure and not just muscle, i.e. putting your body into it. Learning to use my core muscle strength to keep my body aligned has given me a lot more power over the years. (Its also what helped me realize I have really bad posture in general). Doing both of the above will give your longer oar strokes which can provide more power and are more efficient.

Rowing catarafts taught me to balance out my strokes (left/right orientation). I had a stronger side like most people and the extra power from the one would throw off my ferry angle = ineffective power. I still have to remember to focus on balance when I get stressed.

Hope that wasn't too redundant with what you already know....looking forward to see if there is anything others contribute that I have missed in the past.

Phillip
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,247 Posts
I do seem to notice a difference with quality carbon fiber and fiberglass oars, compared to my old carlisle. The flex they have does seem to provide extra power right near the end of the stroke.

Using your skeletal structure and not just muscle, i.e. putting your body into it. Learning to use my core muscle strength to keep my body aligned has given me a lot more power over the years. (Its also what helped me realize I have really bad posture in general). Doing both of the above will give your longer oar strokes which can provide more power and are more efficient.

Rowing catarafts taught me to balance out my strokes (left/right orientation). I had a stronger side like most people and the extra power from the one would throw off my ferry angle = ineffective power. I still have to remember to focus on balance when I get stressed.

Hope that wasn't too redundant with what you already know....looking forward to see if there is anything others contribute that I have missed in the past.

Phillip
^^^This^^^ Use your whole body, not just your arms.
Have a foot bar that allows you to "lock" your feet in place so you can
use full lower body power. A strong core allows you to still maintain power by staying in position and in your seat when the boat is not level.

But the best way to increase forward momentum is to pick sections of river with maximum vertical, Dagger Falls, Slaughterhouse Falls, Gore Canyon etc.
 
RMR, Hyside, NRS, Sawyer, K2 coolers, Whitewater Worthy Trailers, Frames and soft goods
Joined
·
644 Posts
You can increase the leverage on the oar by sliding it in 6-12". It works best with rope wrapped and stops on your oars. Your handles will overlap. This technique is why you see all the drift boat guys in the NW put their stops at the very top of their rope wraps. I still row on my stops and just slide them in when I need the extra power. It takes a while to get comfortable with using this method but makes a huge difference.
 

·
over the horizon
Joined
·
290 Posts
Some forward momentum tips:

1. You MUST have lumbar support. Rowing off the top of a cooler with no rolled up paco back there or anything to shove off of is powerless.

2. As you read the water, put those oar blades in the best, forward moving tongues. You will benefit from holding off on a stroke for half a second to avoid putting that blade into a micro-eddy behind a little rock. As I'm driving in toward a feature my oar strokes become separated as each blade seeks to maximize purchase and keep the boat teed up.

3. Experiment with your cockpit. Moving the oar towers a little farther away may favor the shove over the pull, especially if your arms are long. Find a way to tilt your seat forward a few degrees. Place some gear under your seat that your heels can press back against in an alternate shoving stance.

4. Fatter blades are more powerful, but will get more violently tweaked around in hidden currents. It's a tradeoff, but narrow blades will never achieve the same forward momentum as the fatties. With practice feathering the blades can help them escape those chaotic moments that get you thrown out of your seat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,385 Posts
I learned (the hard way) the value of rotating the bow downstream and pulling at an angle to ferry in very powerful, fast moving water. Standard ferry technique got me sucked right into the face of a big wave and I swam.....a lot

Sent from my SM-N900V using Mountain Buzz mobile app
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,344 Posts
Use your whole body, not just your arms.
Have a foot bar that allows you to "lock" your feet in place so you can
use full lower body power. A strong core allows you to still maintain power by staying in position and in your seat when the boat is not level.
+1 on this advice. Try not to let your elbows come behind you on the backstroke. Bring them about halfway, then push forward and lean with your upper body. Use your larger back and core muscles. Bringing your elbows too far back is asking for shoulder problems down the line. Having a good foot bar to brace against and to be able to lock in your toes is important. I always rowed my cat from a seat, so I agree that having a seat to push against is helpful. Now on my raft, I'm rowing from a dry box, with no backrest. I haven't found it to be terrible so far, but I do kind of miss my seat a bit.

One thing no one was mentioned is rowing position on the cat. Most play cat boaters appear to row from a forward position. This is supposed to give the rower a better ability to punch waves/holes/hydraulics etc. As a multi-day cat boater, I always preferred to row from the center. I felt it gave me the best position to pivot from for a push or pull stroke. Seating position is a very personal choice and depends on what kind of cat boating your are doing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,641 Posts
+1 on this advice. Try not to let your elbows come behind you on the backstroke. Bring them about halfway, then push forward and lean with your upper body. Use your larger back and core muscles. Bringing your elbows too far back is asking for shoulder problems down the line. Having a good foot bar to brace against and to be able to lock in your toes is important. I always rowed my cat from a seat, so I agree that having a seat to push against is helpful. Now on my raft, I'm rowing from a dry box, with no backrest. I haven't found it to be terrible so far, but I do kind of miss my seat a bit.

One thing no one was mentioned is rowing position on the cat. Most play cat boaters appear to row from a forward position. This is supposed to give the rower a better ability to punch waves/holes/hydraulics etc. As a multi-day cat boater, I always preferred to row from the center. I felt it gave me the best position to pivot from for a push or pull stroke. Seating position is a very personal choice and depends on what kind of cat boating your are doing.
+2. Torso does nearly half of the forward stroke and the arms finish it.

Properly sized (length/position/pivot point) oars, too long and you can't push, too short and no power.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
613 Posts
I vote for reading the water and setting up a good line. I often think three strokes higher upstream can save you 30 or 300 further down.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,094 Posts
If you are still rowing your Outcast, I suggest moving your frame forward on the tubes. Speaking from experience, it'll greatly improve the boats ability to punch big holes. My boat will even look a bit front heavy when floating but that makes it catch eddys, surf, and slice through holes much better.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,048 Posts
Some forward momentum tips:

1. You MUST have lumbar support. Rowing off the top of a cooler with no rolled up paco back there or anything to shove off of is powerless.
Disagree. Never had lumbar support and my forward stroke is mighty. It all depends on how braced in you are. Lumbar support locks you into rowing off of that 'hinge'. I tend to get my whole body into it. And as GC Guide suggests I stand up a lot, especially on the very big hits. Then instead of hinging off my lumbar I am exploding off of the whole box to the bow in one big extension of my whole body.

Personally I think seats encourage static rowing. IMHO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,208 Posts
I learned (the hard way) the value of rotating the bow downstream and pulling at an angle to ferry in very powerful, fast moving water. Standard ferry technique got me sucked right into the face of a big wave and I swam.....a lot

Sent from my SM-N900V using Mountain Buzz mobile app
I thought of your story and the whole push vs pull thread and finally "heard" carvedog yelling at me (even though I've never met him, I swear it was his words I heard...) a few weeks ago when faced with bad line to start kitchen sink: I was sliding sideways into herb's by instinct I was in the process of turning the bow to the rock to backrow when all of this hit me! What I heard was "push you moron, don't pull!" Two pushes and I was online, the rest of the rapid went easy-peasy, had I continued on my turn I'd probably had a much more interesting ride! I actually broke out laughing afterwards, it was a really strange experience. Carvedog, you clairvoyant?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,048 Posts
I thought of your story and the whole push vs pull thread and finally "heard" carvedog yelling at me (even though I've never met him, I swear it was his words I heard...) a few weeks ago when faced with bad line to start kitchen sink: I was sliding sideways into herb's by instinct I was in the process of turning the bow to the rock to backrow when all of this hit me! What I heard was "push you moron, don't pull!" Two pushes and I was online, the rest of the rapid went easy-peasy, had I continued on my turn I'd probably had a much more interesting ride! I actually broke out laughing afterwards, it was a really strange experience. Carvedog, you clairvoyant?
Good fun. I am glad I was able to help in some small way from afar. The whole changing of momentum to pulling can be a real line killer for sure. Sometimes it has to be done though.

Not clairvoyant in the way most folks think of clairvoyance. But I do believe that energy comes in many more forms than most people currently acknowledge.

It is amazing what happens when you refuse to accept other peoples reality.
IE: 'the push stroke is a weaker' or 'the power or pull stroke is the only way to get out of trouble'

Sometimes for me it's not thinking in forward or backward or push or pull-just 'move boat there with these levers (oars)'.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
186 Posts
Standing

If I need to get the most out of a push, I stand up and put my right knee on my drybox. It moves my center of gravity back a little, but the relationship between my body, oars, locks, water is perfect to get the most out of each push. Standing in front of the drybox is the next best position for my setup. When I push hard from the sitting position, with my heavy boat, I usually just beat up the water, scare the fish and generally make a fool out of myself with little progress.
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top