This morning at the ISK pool session it had been my intention of focusing on the spine roll, but some much more was achieved…. I had thought that I just needed to work on the end of the roll, but Alex helped me understand that I had to set up differently (my hands were all wrong), dig deep and get the blade out of the water and then slide my off hand and on hand out sideways. The end result was a great sense of accomplishment as I powered through the roll and found myself upright. Alex made another comment that really resonated with me – stop watching, just feel the roll, my chin had been tucked in so I could watch and this caused my head to rise up. By relaxing and no trying to watch my head was much lower in the water and stayed there for longer.
Having completed the spine roll Alex suggested I try the roll with the paddle behind my back, I nailed that first time. With my confidence built I broached the subject of Norsaq rolls and my desire to do the forward start forward finish Norsaq roll. Alex helped me set up correctly then bam, I did it, then bam I did it again… at this point I thought of quitting having had such an awesome session. Then Alex suggested I try the Norsaq from stern to bow finishing forward, unbelievably I nailed that too. I repeated them both then took a breather chatting with Tony, who then wanted to see the rolls, I did not expect them to work but to my amazement I nailed them all again! This time I finally quit and practiced some braces to relax. I had a huge grin and a wonderful sense of accomplishment leaving the pool today. You have to love the way people embrace not just the skills but also the culture of passing on these skills to others. Thanks Alex I am indebted to your teaching this winter.
On my way home I called J and we decided to have lunch together which was a lovely surprise, we met at Big Bowl in Edina, mmmmmm….. Good food. We then shopped and chose some everyday china and glasses to replace the war wounded flatware we have been using for many years. I visited Ron, owner of Novorca Paddles, on my way home and he showed me the processes he uses for wrapping the paddles in carbon, then as an added bonus I stayed and watch as he cut the foam core for an Aleut paddle a customer had ordered. It was great to see the craftsmanship and artistry at work, anyone who claims technology takes away from the tradition has clearly never seen Ron at work.
Ron and I have decided to offer this Wednesday pool session for free. Why you may ask? Well its paid for so why not share the opportunity with friends? One compelling aspect of Inuit culture is the way they pass on skills and help each other adapt the rolls to suit their bodies and kayaks. I think of these sessions as our chance to do that with our friends. I have helped several and several have helped me…. this is what it is all about for me. Today at the ISK pool session I talked Peggy through learning the butterfly roll, I knew having seen how relaxed she had become with her standard roll that she was ready for something else, she nailed it, and I was proud to be called her rolling mentor. A perfect end to a great learning experience… pass it on.
So the roll list has grown:
• Standard Greenland roll – Kinnguffik paarlallugu/nerfallaallugu
• Side sculling – Innaqatsineq
• Chest Scull – Palluussineq
• Reserve sweep roll – Kingumut naatillugu
• Standard roll with paddle behind neck – Siukkut tunusummillugu
• Armpit roll – Paatip kallua tuermillugu illuinnarmik
• Butterfly roll – Pakkaluaq
• Rolling with paddle in crook of elbow – Pakassummillugu/unermillugu
• Storm roll – Siukkut pallortillugu/masikkut
• Throwing stick, start tucked forward, finish leaning aft – Norsamik nerfallaallugu
• Hand roll, start tucked forward, finish leaning aft – Assammik nerfallaallugu
• Paddling upside down – Pusilluni paarneq
• Quick succession of standard rolls – Nerfallarlugu assakaaneq
• Spine roll – Aariammillugu
• Paddle held behind back- Kingup apummaatigut
• Throwing stick, start tucked forward, finish tucked forward – Norsamik masikkut
• Throwing stick, sweep from stern to bow, finish tucked forward – Norsamik kingukkut