Author Topic: Is the balance could get worse if you not practicing in a while?  (Read 611 times)

oceanAddict

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I had a long period when I was not paddling an open water conditions and when I finally get back seems I cannot get myself comfortable. Not really "open" water as some of you go but just unprotected bay waters, probably 1/4 of shore.  Slow rolling knee-high humps, short period and not very organized directionally, think about some underwater structure - I cannot cross that section for a second time. I'm on the same board as before (Blackfish). Somehow feel disconnected, fell off several times, turned around and went to paddle in calm area - no problems there. Is this luck of practice or just in my head? I intentionally went the same spot today and made further through but it still far from crossing it.
 
Infinity Blackfish, SIC Bullet Air Glide, Sunova Point Break #003

sflinux

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Re: Is the balance could get worse if you not practicing in a while?
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2020, 10:20:23 AM »
I would say yes.  Balance is a mixture of technique (i.e. paddle, hinging), muscle memory, and footwork.  With regards to muscle memory, balance is often the effectiveness of the minor muscle groups (feet, ankles, legs), which if not used, get weaker.  I would imagine cross training on a skateboard would be beneficial.  For my balance improvement, I would go out paddling 20-30 min a day and work on my technique, no matter what the conditions.  That helped with the muscle memory and paddle technique.  Balance from the paddle comes from bracing, stroke length, stroke direction, and foot placement while doing a stroke, etc).  I find it helpful to just focus on the conditions (swell/chop) in the immediate vicinity, and disregard what it further than 6 feet away.  Then I try to approach my paddle technique for what I know is coming.  Erik Antonson suggested to not think of balance, but to work on paddle technique for counter acting the forces that want to make you fall. 
The thing that helped my balance the most was footwork.  What works best for me is a cross country skiers stance.  The feet pointed forward, but staggered.  This allows balance in the forward and backward direction.  With the feet parallel to the center line of the board, when you transfer weight to a foot, it doesn't amplify roll, as it does when your feet are angled.  The ideal width of the stance comes from trial and error, best explained here by colas:
https://www.seabreeze.com.au/forums/Stand-Up-Paddle/SUP/Mastering-lateral-balance-on-a-small-SUP-board?page=1
I try to maintain balanced foot pressure so the board remains flat, and doesn't roll.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2020, 10:26:05 AM by sflinux »
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supthecreek

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Re: Is the balance could get worse if you not practicing in a while?
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2020, 12:23:47 PM »
oceanAddict:

Welcome to "Happy Feet"  ;D ;D

I self Isolated for 6 weeks.... on my 72nd Birthday, I got back on the water and I was stuffed!
Worn out and wobbly after 1/2 mile on very FLAT water.

I ended my exile that day... screw CoVid, I needed to save myself from withering away.

It only took a few weeks to get back up to speed.... so get on it!
email
supthecreek@gmail.com

My YouTube channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHRI23a8H21jASPdVCQUpog/videos

oceanAddict

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Re: Is the balance could get worse if you not practicing in a while?
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2020, 05:56:16 PM »
Thank you guys for suggestions

sflinux: good reading and good advice

rick'ster "happy feet" - hahaha!   are you around in august? hoping to get a day off and spend in your neck of wood. 
Infinity Blackfish, SIC Bullet Air Glide, Sunova Point Break #003

PonoBill

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Re: Is the balance could get worse if you not practicing in a while?
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2020, 07:53:00 PM »
Unquestionably, balance is one of the trickiest things we do, and most people really suck at it. What humans CAN do is walk a slack wire across a canyon, or leap on top of an eight-foot inflated ball and roll it around an arena like they were taking a walk. Can anyone do that who hasn't practiced for years? Of course not.

Simply adding another sport can screw you up terribly. When I started surf foiling I regressed 20 years on my surfing--I couldn't do anything. Because all the things you need to do to foil are foreign to surfing or downwinding. I think I can get away with adding those sports back into my repertoire, but I fully expect to suck--not for a week, but for months.

Muscle memory is extraordinarily complex. The time it takes for a verve impulse to go from your feet to your brain, get analyzed in your noggin, and go cack to your muscle is far too long to do anything more complicated than walk slowly. Your brain has to create and store all kinds of shortcuts to make that work. It's not simple, but your body is designed to do if you work at it. You just need to get back out there a fall a bunch. Falling is learning, success teaches you nothing.
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

Admin

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Re: Is the balance could get worse if you not practicing in a while?
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2020, 02:48:18 AM »
And it is not just the brain.  The nerves in our muscles are part of the equation as well. 

https://www.livescience.com/56218-muscles-have-no-strength-memory.html#:~:text=Although%20new%20results%20suggest%20that,that%20control%20movement%2C%20Lindholm%20said.

Although new results suggest that the muscle cells themselves do not retain a "memory" from exercise, the same is not true for the nerves that thread through the muscles, or the brain regions that control movement, Lindholm said.

"Your nerves have learned in which order to activate your muscles in order to perform a certain movement," she said.

singingdog

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Re: Is the balance could get worse if you not practicing in a while?
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2020, 05:05:49 AM »
Proprioception is easily lost and needs to be constantly maintained. The complex firing of nerves and small muscles that allows us to balance in a dynamic environment is key to feeling balanced in the conditions that you describe. If you can't be on the board in rough water, then other dynamic balance exercises will help keep those systems healthy and firing: wobble boards, and slackline are 2 of my favourites. IMHO, nothing beats open water SUP for maintaining proprioception: not just balancing in a dynamic environment, but learning to apply power effectively while doing it.

oceanAddict

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Re: Is the balance could get worse if you not practicing in a while?
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2020, 12:29:06 PM »
I realized that on top of long break in paddling I forgot to put a  center fin in  :-[ .  I had only ventral and sidebites on. I put the center fin in, took a board out yesterday and it felt much better.  I'm back to the game hahaha. //stupid me

still thank you all for suggestions and explanations. going try to get and paddle as often as I can.
Infinity Blackfish, SIC Bullet Air Glide, Sunova Point Break #003

 


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