I've noticed that most don't. If I had a playboat I would at least like a mesh floor just under me. Nothing fancy, but something.
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I would add that a mesh floor can still catch enough water in a big reversal to surf you back into a hole.The theory is that the advantage of a cat in big rapids is that there's nothing to catch the water (like a floor) and cause it to flip. Self bailing to the max. Most play cats have no, or minimal floors, to take full advantage of this. Some have small scout bars that allow the rower to stand & scout. Another advantage in a play cat is that if & when you do flip, you can climb back in the open cockpit. Since I was never a play cat person, and prefer multi-day trips, I made a small skidguard floor for my rower bay. Made loading gear & scouting much easier. Water could still flow through pretty easily, and I never saw it as a big problem. A mesh floor would be ok for quick draining, but they aren't always super easy to stand on.
Good eye. The frame was built using parts of an NRS frame, and the foot bar wasn't on it in that pic. The drop rails were 9" below the top of the 22.5" tubes and I hung up the crossbar several times trying to straddle rocks. The cross brace in front was only 7" down from the top and I hit it on rocks occasionally too.One of the advantages of a small cat is putting each tube on a different side of a rock, much easier with no floor. Notice the picture you provided shows a footbar.
The rower is locked into position, pushing back into the seat and holding on with
both feet and both hands. It is a high clearance frame with room to go over rocks. The yellow frame (purple boat) is lower clearance and does not appear to have any foot bar. Rowing with your feet locked into position allows you to row with your whole body, not just your arms. Much more power and much more stable when being thrown around in big water.
Are you rowing without a seat or something? If so, try a lowback seat - just enough leverage without getting in the way. If you can't push, something weird is going on. You will get used to it, once you get over your raft technique. It won't be hard to swap back and forth, I do. However I do use a seat on both and I will say my rafting foot position has moved up to match my catboating position.I have been curious about this topic as well. Coming from years of round boating and getting into cat boating more. I am struggling with not feeling like I can get leverage to really lay into forward strokes with both feet forward as I prefer one foot forward and one back. Thoughts?
Shooter is compelled to offer this public service announcement.
I learned early on, rowing pig boats heavier then my house, using home built oars, that rowing is a contact sport. Your back is going to take a beating and if you don't pay attention, you can literally cripple yourself. There are a lot of old quides with bad backs, shoulders, elbows, etc. who can confirm this.
You should be able to pull a full stroke, or push it, with your back and arms straight, just by pivoting at the hips. You should never be in a position to be pinned between your oar handle and any part of your boat or it's load, cause if you can be, you will be.
Your back does the work, your arms are like connecting rods, and your oars are the pistons; if you find yourself using your arms to actually pull, you're going to wear yourself out in short order and eventually your arms and shoulders will.......quit.
Keep your thumbs away from the ends of the oars or you will discover a whole new level of pain at some point. I'm talking kicked in the balls by a bull kind of pain.
Pulling a stroke is pretty much natural; your legs and back do the work, your shoulders, arms, and wrists guide the oar blade where you want it to be.
Pushing a stroke is a bit more demanding, cause you know, your back can't really......get into it..........but, if you use your stomach muscles as much as possible along with your back your push should be almost as strong as your pull.
Think grunting out a really big one is the best way I can explain it.
Above all; shoulders to fingers are NOT for power, they are for finesse.
If you are positioning a foot behind you when you push, you're doing it wrong. Promise.
If you want to hook your toes under a bar, or box, or another person when you push, you're doing it wrong. Promise.
Can't explain it better than that.
Shooter will now return you to your normally scheduled broadcast.........