Q&A: Balancing in a Doubles Canoe


Question: My husband and I bought a double canoe in order to d Duzi next year. But we cannot get around the dam once without arguing! Is there something we should be doing to make things easier? The boat rocks a lot when he tries to go too fast and then it feels very unstable.



Answer: Fiona, sounds like you have a lot of work to do before considering the 2018 Dusi. Being comfortable with a partner requires a certain skill and mutual trust. It complicates the situation if you have vastly different competencies. This means communicating in instances of difficulty and satisfactorily resolving the issues. Arguing is unlikely to solve your joint balancing issue

A double K2 should provide sufficient stability. As the back paddler, you have to fit in with the rhythm and stroke of the front paddler. Having said that, the front paddler has to create platform for you to stroke efficiently, allowing you to contribute as much as you can and want, to the forward propulsion of the craft.

You can see what is going on in front, but your husband can only sense and feel what is going on behind, even bouts of nervousness. If you are an uneasy passenger, do some balancing drills in a single canoe. Fall out a few times to get used to the water so that capsizing is no longer an issue. Get your husband to limit the stroke rate, because your joint balance will be tested at a higher stroke rate. Perhaps swop seats with your husband and see how it goes with him in the back, even for a short time.


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