Stability drills

Posture, stability and balance

Set-up/entry

Sit: sit in your ski with heels firmly in foot wells, weight off the pedals. Keep your knees together along the mid line of the ski. Sit up tall, gently stretching your abs between your pelvis and sternum. Lean forward 5-10° from vertical by pivoting the torso over the hips, not by flexing the lumbar, thoracic or cranial regions of your back. This will place your chin somewhere between mid thigh and your hips. If your lower back, glutes or hamstrings feel too tight, sit up a little more vertical.

NOTE: never sit leaning back in the ski as you will compromise the balance component offered through your paddle stroke

Propeller: hold paddle parallel to water and at chin height in glide phase after exit. Keep bottom (foremost) hand up and rotate paddle for entry while keeping parallel to water- let your top hand lift up and into place

EPP: enter the water without any pull- decelerate the blade to zero re hull (i.e. stationary in water), wait for the forward movement of the hull to push the blade forward against the water, then pull

Heel!: place blade in water at your heels, then on next strokes slowly move the entry forward until the paddle “plops” (i.e. no longer quiet) on the entry or your elbow flexes on the entry

Entry/catch

EPP: enter the water without any pull- decelerate the blade to zero re hull (i.e. stationary in water), wait for the forward movement of the hull to push the blade forward against the water, then pull

Heel II: feel force application act through your heels in pushing the hull forward from catch onwards into the whole pull

Non-catch: enter quickly and cleanly and let hull move past paddle without pulling

Pull

Single side: paddling on only one side keeping top arm locked in place for the pull and recovery (feather blade and slide forward over the water). Do an even pattern (10 strokes left, 10 right, 10 normal or 20 seconds left, 20 second right, 20 seconds normal) or a descending pattern 10L10R 10 normal, 9L9R 10 normal, 8L8R 10 normal, etc.).

Block: Top arm stability- keep your top arm hand in front of your face from catch to exit

Set square: top arm elbow angle remains fixed (set at 90-135 º, suggest you start at 90º and move outwards as skill, flexibility and strength increase).
Eyes closed: paddle with eyes closed for 10-20 strokes and feel for the catch and resultant boat movement.

Heel III: feel force application act through your heels in pushing the hull forward through the whole pull

Exit

Zero-Fast: Exit the water as quickly as possible so the blade goes from stationary in the water to hull speed as fast as possible.

Single side: paddling on only one side keeping top arm locked in place for the pull then quickly exiting into an ear touch then return back down and slide blade back forward (feather blade and slide forward over the water). Do an even pattern (10 strokes left, 10 right, 10 normal or 20 seconds left, 20 second right, 20 seconds normal) or a descending pattern 10L10R 10 normal, 9L9R 10 normal, 8L8R 10 normal, etc.).

Heel IV: feel force application act through your heels in pushing the hull forward right up until the exit is clear of the water

Recovery

Swing drill: paddle 4 or 6 times (even number) then rotate 3 or 5 times (odd number) with paddle parallel to water at waist height. Keep hip and torso rotation speed constant on paddling and rotations. Keep range of motion the same on rotation as in paddling.

Ear: after exit reach up and touch your ear with the exiting hand.

Taps: with tip of blade tap boat deck to side of your feet then return to set up and enter normally. Start tapping on the same side as the entry, then progress to tapping on the opposite side as entry.

Metro-gnome: starting in a neutral seating position, lean forward for 10 strokes then back to neutral for 10 strokes then lean back for 10 strokes. Repeat for 9 strokes front, 9 neutral and 9 back, then 8-8-8, 7-7-7, etc. refining your neutral position each time.

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