Author Topic: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos  (Read 25111 times)

Argosi

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Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« on: August 01, 2013, 07:41:34 PM »
Larry Cain is one of the gurus of SUP technique. He's a former Olympic gold medalist in C1 sprint canoe. He demonstrated that many aspects of C1 stroke technique could be applied to SUP by almost immediately becoming one of the fastest guys in flat water when he started SUP a few years ago. He's now 50 years old and the fastest SUP paddler in Canada. SUPracer.com's Christopher Parker recently described Larry as one of the smartest and most respected guys in the world of SUP and refers to him as the "Professor of SUP" because of Larry's intelligent and analytical approach. So yes, he's a serious guy when it comes to stroke technique.

He recently wrote a blog post on using technique drills to improve your stroke. He's broken down the SUP stroke into its components and described technique and drills for each part. It's detailed and analytical, like most everything he writes. Nice thing is that he's also created short videos to illustrate each drill.

Here's a link to his blog (see his July 20 post):
http://larrycain.ca/blog.html

Definitely recommended. After applying some of this stuff, yesterday I did my regular 5 mile paddle and ended up with my best time yet.

Here are his videos that accompany his blog post (make sure you also read the details in the actual post to get the most out of the videos):















« Last Edit: August 01, 2013, 07:43:17 PM by Argosi »

XLR8

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2013, 07:56:52 PM »
Larry is a badass.  That blog post was incredibly helpful to me too and I feel it is pretty generous of him to put the drills out in short videos like that.  Nice job in putting it all together here for us.  I've had the opportunity to race with Larry -- well, behind Larry -- a few times over the last couple of years and he is powerful.  And a nice guy.  These are quick, simple to integrate drills that have definitely helped me with technique.
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SpecialK

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Re:
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2013, 06:51:06 PM »
Without a doubt, this is the best set of technical instruction out there. Thanks for the effort Larry...

pdxmike

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2013, 02:20:20 PM »
Thanks Argosi--these are great.

Here's a video that's been posted in the past of his complete stroke.  Very helpful to see--shows it from several angles with no interruptions:


DavidJohn

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2013, 05:02:27 PM »
Excellent vids.. Thanks for posting them.

DJ

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2013, 04:31:29 PM »
Like!

That 2nd video was from WB.   I can't count how many times I've done that loop.   Only about 4 years SUPing it now, but 10 kayaking it before that.   He makes it look easy.   it ain't.
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blueplanetsurf

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2013, 01:40:27 AM »
These are great drills.  I find drills are probably the best way to improve technique and agree that many paddlers need to work on a clean, forward catch.  I also like his points on engaging the hips, good stuff.
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upwinder

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2013, 04:40:33 AM »



Wow. I counted 45 strokes on his right side before changing  :o presumably there were a few before the start of the footage as well.

(Edit: obviously masterful stroke technique but on second viewing I noticed he has also his weight biased a bit to the left side while paddling on the right...using a bit of opposite rail to keep it tracking? no way my brain and body will work together like that)
« Last Edit: August 05, 2013, 04:45:03 AM by upwinder »
In theory, there should be no difference between theory and practice, but in practice, there is...
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Argosi

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2013, 09:46:09 AM »



Wow. I counted 45 strokes on his right side before changing  :o presumably there were a few before the start of the footage as well.

(Edit: obviously masterful stroke technique but on second viewing I noticed he has also his weight biased a bit to the left side while paddling on the right...using a bit of opposite rail to keep it tracking? no way my brain and body will work together like that)

Larry can paddle indefinitely on one side. One thing he says is it's better to change sides when you want to and not because you have to. It also avoids the inevitable loss of speed as you change sides.

raf

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2013, 07:29:52 AM »
Thought I'd chime in as I just met him at the Lobster Cup in maine and had some good conversation.  Really nice guy.  From the vids, I thought he was 6'2" or bigger, but he is actually around 5'9" or 10".  Very compact, super strong.  Pretty much built to kick ass, which is what he does.  On both days, he was a dot on the horizon within 15 minutes. 

He can and does paddle on one side as long as he wants even in rough coastal chop.  The scary thing is he promised to bring what he calls "some really fast paddlers" to next year's SUP Cup.  Meaning guys that can beat him. 

Billekrub

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #10 on: August 09, 2014, 07:31:37 PM »
Thanks for posting these Larry Cain videos.  They helped me enormously.

Started today focusing on the entry, using a more forward insertion as described and it made a huge difference, as if my board were twice as fast to accelerate.  With much less effort could get up to speed, or, if timing required, could wait and just do a few powerful strokes to catch the wave.

Compared to previous sessions, my wave catch percent went up to 80 percent as opposed to 20, with much more power and mobility in the waves.

Will continue to work on the other items.

PonoBill

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #11 on: August 09, 2014, 08:43:26 PM »
He's doing a little J-stroke and feathering his blade to the outside to keep the board straight. I like his drills a lot better than his stroke. Understand my own stroke sucks, but I've watched a lot of the best guys paddle SUPs and OC, and what I'm seeing Larry do isn't what I'd call current practice. Nice stroke, and I'm sure he'd kick my ass, but it's not what I'd emulate.

Contrary to his drills, his blade is in the air when he starts his catch. Doesn't happen every time, but it happens most of the time. He isn't reaching forward and planting his blade.

Most of the great paddlers concentrate on rotating in the plane of the spine, pulling back with the blade side shoulder with rotation and hip movement and pushing forward with the upper shoulder and lats, rotating the offside hip forward. 

He's adding power at the end of the stroke to get that J-draw going, so when he feathers and recovers there's a splash as he's pulling water. You can see his rail and tail bobbing downward on the longer strokes.  His blade is off to the side so he can't just push it forward. He has to drop his upper hand to clear the blade and swing wide to recover it. The resulting slow recovery and energy required to get his hands into position are probably part of the reason he's rushing his catch.

His left side catch is inconsistent. If you look across his board you can see part of the blade out of the water for the whole stroke. He buries deeper on the right side, but hes starting to pull before the blade is in the water.

There's lots of ways to skin a cat. The OC guys are still changing technique after many years of refinement. The stroke for SUP will change, and I find Larry's drills to be excellent. but if I'm going to copy a stroke it's not going to be that one.
« Last Edit: August 09, 2014, 08:49:19 PM by PonoBill »
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PonoBill

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2014, 07:56:31 AM »
No, I'm not the final arbiter of paddle strokes, I'm just describing what I see. If you can't see his paddle moving through the air before it hits the water (especially on the left side) then just look a little harder and more critically.
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SaMoSUP

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2014, 08:57:50 AM »
...I've watched a lot of the best guys paddle SUPs and OC, and what I'm seeing Larry do isn't what I'd call current practice. Nice stroke, and I'm sure he'd kick my ass, but it's not what I'd emulate....

This is what I discovered when I did the clinics with Danny Ching and Dave Kalama recently. Most in the group had to undo our existing strokes since what we learned when we started was the technique that Larry Cain teaches. It was amusing to watch some good paddlers, racers & instructors, look like novices working on modified stroke mechanics.

I do think that what people like Larry teaches is a great foundational technique that leads to what some of the current elite SUP paddlers are doing. Just like in snow skiing, the technique progression starts from a snowplow to stem christie to parallel. Once you can parallel, then technique focus shifts to knee angulation, hip drive, pole plants, etc.

The main difference I found in the "new school" stroke clinics was technique in hip and core engagement which in turn wreaked havoc on my existing reach, catch, power phases of the stroke.

 
« Last Edit: August 10, 2014, 09:08:57 AM by SaMoSUP »

PonoBill

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Re: Larry Cain's technique drills and videos
« Reply #14 on: August 10, 2014, 09:14:44 AM »
I think his drills are pretty good, but I don't like the idea of unlearning anything. It's like grammar school where they teach you that people before Columbus thought the world was flat, and then you find out that almost no one ever thought that. I prefer to start learning the current practice--even if it changes.
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