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Paddle Under the Boat Scull

Published on 7/22/2019

QAJAQ USA Technique Forum Archive Messages 1 - 9,999

Re: paddle under the boat scull (PIC)

Posted By: Greg Stamer <>
Date: Monday, 27 January 2003, at 10:35 p.m.

In Response To: Re: paddle under the boat scull (Greg Stamer)

: Maligiaq gave me a tip concerning this roll last summer when we were both in 
: Japan.

I found my original notes on this, scribbled after Maligiaq and I taught in Japan. It reads, "Maligiaq gave me a huge tip on the under the hull sculling roll. Rather than each stroke being symmetrically leading edge down, Maligiaq instead allows the blade to dive only as it moves toward the bow, and then slices it straight back as it moves toward the stern".

This is very confusing, so I've drawn a rough sketch, below. At left is a "normal" leading-edge-high scull that generates lift (the common figure-eight motion used for a side-scull). The under-the-hull sculling roll uses a diving angle at the start, meaning leading-edge-down. You don't change the paddle motion during the roll. Once you dig down and pass the half-way point the diving scull becomes a lifting scull simply due to the change in kayak orientation.

When you use a diving blade angle the paddle cuts through "new" water rather than going back and forth in the same water as for a lifting scull. Maligiaq's refinement is shown in (b). Rather than keeping the blade angles symmetric (as in (a)), he permits the blade to dive only as it moves toward the bow (to the right in this picture), he then recovers with the blade feathered so as to slice almost edgewise as it moves backward, then the cycle repeats. 
Maligiaq says that method a), with symmetrical blade angles, makes this roll much more difficult.

Other tips from Pavia are that you should reach forward when capsized. In other words the paddle should be underneath the foredeck rather than under the cockpit.

Anyway, these are a few tips to think about, from two Greenlanders who make this roll look very, very easy.

Greg Stamer


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