that's worth practicing
Posted by: CapeFear on Feb-16-13 3:06 PM (EST)
Just a few weeks ago I sat along the beach in the broken waves for a while, in water just deep enough to clear my head upside down, to where my shoulder hit bottom, just capsizing repeatedly. I like to do this once in a while just to practice righting myself with one quick nudge off the bottom, letting go of the paddle with one hand to nudge off the bottom with my hand. When I'd land on my shoulder, I'd nudge with my elbow.
Practicing this once in a while makes it come naturally for me when I find myself capsized, washed into shallows. If the wave is still powerful enough to drag you behind the kayak in water that shallow, you'll be able to ride along the surface if you allow your paddle to trail and just allow the planing paddle face to keep you up towards the surface. Works like a champ as long as you don't panic and try to push your body above the surface with the paddle. Just float with the blade along the surface until the wave loses a little more energy to allow you to sit up without being knocked right back over. The kayak will always end up leading your body towards shore in these situations.
So effectively, you won't have to worry about your head or torso being dragged along the bottom by a wave, or how to roll up quickly if you find yourself in that position. It's an easy one to practice and an easy one to execute. If you're still being pulled along by the wave, think relaxed arms and continued being pulled along, with you body along the surface next to the paddle face. Don't reach down and injure yourself. If you're no longer being dragged, nudge yourself up.