As a surfski paddler, you're no stranger to the thrill of gliding across the water at speed. But let's be real, there are times when that thrill can turn to terror, as you find yourself taking an unplanned swim. But fear not, my paddling friends! Falling out of your surfski doesn't have to be a nightmare scenario. In fact, with the right training and preparation, it can actually make you a more confident and stable paddler.
You see, one of the keys to mastering the art of surfski paddling is falling in on purpose in different conditions so that you can practice remounting. This is where controlled situations come into play. By practicing falling out of your surfski in a controlled environment, as part of a group, you'll build the confidence and skills necessary to handle unexpected situations when you're out on the water.
When you're practicing falling out of your surfski, there are a few important things to keep in mind. First and foremost, never let go of your paddle or your ski! Your paddle will float away pretty quickly if you haven't got hold of it and you can't go too far/fast in your ski without it. Secondly, know what to do if you get tangled in your leg rope. This can be a serious safety hazard, so it's important to be prepared for this scenario. Keep calm, take your time.
Another important aspect to consider is the direction of the wind and swell when remounting. If you're facing the boat directly into or away from the wind and swell, you'll have an easier time getting back on top and avoid toppling off the other side. If you are side on to the swell and/or wind you will most likely take another swim.
Each time you fall in and attempt a remount you use a lot of energy so it is important to get yourself set up right for your first attempt. Once you get back on the ski you may want to throw one leg over each side for stability. Take a moment to get yourself set up right before putting your feet back in and paddling again. Like I said before, keep calm and take your time.
In conclusion, falling out of your surfski may seem like a negative experience, but with the right training and preparation, it can actually make you a more confident and stable paddler. By practicing falling out of your surfski in controlled situations, as part of a group, you'll build the skills and confidence necessary to handle unexpected situations when you're out on the water. Remember, never let go of your paddle, be prepared for a leg rope tangling, and be mindful of the wind and swell direction when remounting. Keep calm and paddle on.
See you on the water.