Rolling a kayak consistently has a lot to do with developing good muscle memory. As we repeat the motion of a roll our body learns the sequences of muscle movements we need to execute to perform it, and we develop muscle memory. When learning a roll we inevitably fail...read more
A couple of days ago I was driving to work feeling very tired, I took a turn off the highway and found my way to a local coffee house. After standing in line behind the other quiet, sleepy clientele I ordered my shot of caffeine and was handed a few dollar bills of...read more
I was recently exchanging emails with an online acquaintance, Curt Gashlin, discussing Greenland mentoring. The dialog reminded me of a subject I have been meaning to write about for some time, the differentiation between a Greenland kayaking mentor and a general...read more
This past weekend I led a three day trip up the North Shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota. There were six of us, each at very different places with our paddling skills and experience of paddling Lake Superior. I car pooled with Jeff, bringing along the kayak trailer...read more
Jacquelyn and I spent a long weekend visiting our favorite North Shore destinations. Much hiking, photography, great food, and a visit to a spa. This view of the Grand Marais Harbor wall and lighthouse is one I have revisited numerous times due to the lovely lichen in...read more
A good friend of mine, James Manke, recently traveled to Japan where he to took part in a Qajaq rolling event (GUTS) organized by Qajaq Japan. On his return he wrote about the use of the word "boat" being offensive to the Inuit that he met. He was told that as a part...read more
Qajaq Rolls is dedicated to passing on the traditional art of Greenland kayaking. Greenland kayak rolling can be a relaxing, yoga-like exercise. Rolling is also a tremendously valuable self-rescue technique, and should be the go-to recovery for any serious kayaker. Greenland kayak rolls are steeped in the history of the Inuit people, whose very survival depended upon their ability to roll up and recover while hunting. But Greenland kayaking encompasses much more than just rolling, qajaq building, paddle carving, throwing the harpoon and rope gymnastics are just some of the many skills that make up this ancient subsistence culture. If you are interested in learning more about all aspects of Greenland kayaking consider supporting Qajaq USA and Qaannat Katuffiat:
Qajaq USA is a nonprofit membership organization that is officially recognized by Qaannat Kattuffiat (The Greenland Kayaking Association). Qajaq USA is committed to supporting Qaannat Kattuffiat and their efforts to preserve, study and promote the traditions and techniques of Greenland kayaking while seeking to further the appreciation and development of Greenland-style kayaking in the United States.
Please consider joining Qajaq USA and supporting the organizations efforts.
If you are looking to prepare yourself your equipment and then learn your first roll please follow this link to a series of articles put together to help people get started: Getting your first roll. Nothing beats in person training, especially one-on-one training. If you are looking for mentoring check out the Qajaq USA Events where you can become immersed in the culture of traditional paddling.
Rolling with Sticks® started as a project to document the progress I was making as I learned the different Greenland style kayak rolls. This work evolved into the water proof guidebook and DVD. The project has paid for the costs of production so I decided to make them freely available for download in English, español – Spanish and 中文 – Chinese. Please download and share them with your paddling friends, and help to promote the art of Greenland rolling.