Author Topic: "immediate" sea legs  (Read 23458 times)

RideTheGlide

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"immediate" sea legs
« on: September 21, 2019, 08:51:58 AM »
Curious if this is a common thing and if others do any warm up or whatever to help. This is my second year of paddling. Lots of miles both years. I have decent balance and paddling skills.

I have paddled offshore to fish a fair amount this year; tomorrow might make 10. A couple of times I have come in early, taken a little break and then practiced in and out, trying to surf a little with limited success on my big touring board. In the smallish surf we paddle through, usually in the 2' range, I don't have much trouble paddling out or coming in. Except first thing in the morning when I am headed out loaded up. I have scaled back on gear substantially, so not as much of an issue as it was the first few trips when I unloaded my trunk onto the front of my board and ended up losing some of it.

I usually go out on my knees because I am wobbly the first time I pop up. It doesn't take much time standing and paddling to get my sea legs and when I go in and out I pop up ready to go. It's pretty much a first time of the day thing.

Any suggestions? I fish with kayakers, so they are no help.
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burchas

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2019, 09:03:59 AM »
I'm not sure what is the problem you're describing? is it going through the surf or even flat water?
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Wetstuff

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2019, 09:23:31 AM »
RTG, I discussed it with Creek once: my 'total newbie' feelings for the first 20-30min. I have C'hit for balance (tho' I can dry-hair flatwater) and Rick pretty much agreed, I simply have to get past 'the twitches'.  Once I am a little tired the wobbles calm down a bit.  We typically have three swells running at the same time, so it almost always seems like Victory at Sea out there.  The bad news for me; there are people out there who are stable as statues.   ...' way it goes. Press on.

...and don't you topload a bunch of gear to fish?  I cannot imagine standing with all that mass above the waterline ..and casting.  I'd have two sets of those foam pontoon floats.

Jim
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RideTheGlide

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2019, 11:19:24 AM »
RTG, I discussed it with Creek once: my 'total newbie' feelings for the first 20-30min. I have C'hit for balance (tho' I can dry-hair flatwater) and Rick pretty much agreed, I simply have to get past 'the twitches'.  Once I am a little tired the wobbles calm down a bit.  We typically have three swells running at the same time, so it almost always seems like Victory at Sea out there.  The bad news for me; there are people out there who are stable as statues.   ...' way it goes. Press on.

...and don't you topload a bunch of gear to fish?  I cannot imagine standing with all that mass above the waterline ..and casting.  I'd have two sets of those foam pontoon floats.

Jim
I am sometimes a slow learner, but I figured out that too much gear was a really bad idea. Now I have what you see, except the fanny pack has a bottle of water on each side. ;) The cargo is low profile and tapers to the front. I carried way too much "just in case" crap. If I want to put fish on ice, I radio one of my kayak buddies if no one is in shouting distance; they carry bags you could hide bodies in. A catch bag with freezer brlcks was about half my cargo weight. I would carry boxes of tackle and use maybe 6 different lures or rigs in a full day. So now I carry 10 or 12.

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RideTheGlide

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2019, 11:34:49 AM »
I'm not sure what is the problem you're describing? is it going through the surf or even flat water?
That's actually a really good question. I do have it to some degree on flat water and giving it some thought, it may be to the same degree. Flat water is much more patient with me; I can be a little wobbly for a minute with no consequence. I was thinking it could be age related, but when I get stable I am actually slightly older...  ::)
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burchas

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2019, 12:32:56 PM »
I'm not sure what is the problem you're describing? is it going through the surf or even flat water?
That's actually a really good question. I do have it to some degree on flat water and giving it some thought, it may be to the same degree. Flat water is much more patient with me; I can be a little wobbly for a minute with no consequence. I was thinking it could be age related, but when I get stable I am actually slightly older...  ::)

The first place I would start is with the board and more precisely, the rails. Some rails promote better primary stability but some has little but really good secondary stability. I have one with the latter, and it is twitchy when you first get on it until you get use to it.

Maybe that is what you're experiencing. Nothing really to do with sea legs, flat water too. I'm programmed to it so I'm not affected on flat water but when it comes to going through some surf, I'll start on my knees anyway just to be on the safe side.
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nalu-sup

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2019, 02:07:05 PM »
Minor thought. I often paddle out well before sunrise, when there is just barely enough daylight to see the water. I know that my balance is not nearly as good in the dark when my eyes cannot help with the balance (try balancing with your eyes closed). As soon as it starts to get brighter out, my balance improves.
As another approach, one thing that I often do when I first start paddling in the morning is to intentionally rock the board side to side, both to wake up my balance muscles, and to reacquaint my brain with the primary and secondary stability of whatever board I am one. This seems to help a lot, compared to trying to keep the board quiet and level, which tends to make me stiff instead of soft in the ankles and knees.
Having said all that, it is certainly true that getting closer to 70 requires more time and effort to balance and adjust, so there is that.
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RideTheGlide

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2019, 06:12:37 AM »
Another update after more experimentation and observation...

I am not sure it is really fixable, at leas not completely. I am unsteady when I first rise from a full kneel anytime, anywhere. It does seem to help a little if I never sit back. On a dock launch, I sit, put my feet on the board and stand and still have a slight bit of unsteadiness but far less than coming up from kneeling.

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Wetstuff

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2019, 06:31:18 AM »
RTG...   Look up 'near syncope' ..there may be a brief period when your circulation is compromised by kneeling. I'd bet jackknifed arteries in the legs hold back the available volume...  mmm?? 

Copy/paste

Lightheadedness is usually caused by some surrounding circumstance impairing blood flow to the brain when a person is standing up. It's a challenge for the heart to keep the brain supplied with blood when we are upright -- and it's easy for this system to break down. Common causes include pooling of blood in your lower legs from sitting or standing too long, a very slow or very fast heart rate, low blood pressure from medications or nervous system dysfunction, blood pressure medications, and dehydration.

I have been a fainter my whole life - got new front teeth thanks to ROTC - my pressure has always been low.  One BIG THING - guzzle the C'hit out of liquids before you go out.  It sounds stoopid but your pressure will have dropped well before you think you are thirsty.

Jim
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flkiter

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2019, 09:40:41 AM »
Endo board will help build your balance. You can make one with some stiff shelf board and a big plastic pipe. Start on carpet so the rolling is slow and you'll improve your balance in no time. You can watch TV and cross train on it.

nalu-sup

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2019, 10:01:00 PM »
For unsteadiness when you are first getting up, I will share a trick that I learned from Creek. I use it anytime the water is really rough, and it makes a ton of difference for me and my 68-year-old body with two metal hips, a disc taken out of my back, and screwy vision from a surfing injury.
Once I get my feet under me in a low crouch, I plant the paddle vertically on the deck of the board with one hand just above the blade. I then use that as a third leg as I start to rise up. Partway up my other hand grabs the paddle midway up, and by the time I am upright, the original lower hand is already on the top of the handle and starting to paddle. This approach allows me to have a third leg functioning all the way through the rising motion, and gets me paddling sooner for stability. This is the only way I can reliably get to my feet when downwinding on a 27" wide board in 30 mph winds, and also works on all my surf sups. Maybe give it a try.
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supthecreek

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2019, 03:58:34 AM »
ha ha nalu.... the "Creek-up"
Not my finest move, but it's the only way my knees seem to like getting up  ;D ;D
I always compare it to an old man getting up from the kitchen floor...... you grab onto table and pull yourself up.

RTG, I think a great number of older paddlers experience "happy feet" at the beginning of a session.
My feet simply feel "nervous" at first, just kind of shaking and wobbling a bit.
If sessions are infrequent, it pretty much happens every time
If I am going a lot, I barely notice it.

Like Wettie mentions.... "happy feet" stop after you stop fighting it and relax.
Getting a bit tired always stops it, because your body stops fighting it.

These days, if I am feeling wobbly, I move my feet closer to the center of the board, with my "dominant" foot back a few inches with my toes aimed out towards the rail on a 45 degree angle.... same on all boards, regardless of size.
This serves to minimize wobble, because you limit the leverage each leg has on tipping the board into the water.
The less you tip, the less you wobble.

Worth mentioning:
When I am teaching a first time paddler, after they get up, look down at their feet begin to wobble like crazy...
I simply tell them to look up.... and smile.

It works every time..... smiling relaxes you  :)

RideTheGlide

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Re: "immediate" sea legs
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2019, 11:09:52 AM »
I will try something more like the "Creek stance". I am usually a little wider and sometimes slide my goofy foot back (it is not dominant for everything) slightly but not at a 45.

Thanks!
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