Friday, April 10, 2009


Hanging out in the training eddy with Beni

To earn pieces of eight I teach whitewater canoeing at the world renowed Kanuschule Versam in Switzerland. I take great pleasure in helping other paddlers progress and improve, interacting with them and discussing and explaining how a canoe can be paddled efficiently and enjoyably.

Bankside coaching with Reto

Putting your skis or snowboard away and dusting off your canoe after the winter takes a certain amount of detirmination, especially when the ski resorts are still open and there is loads of snow! The solution is to man up, load the wagon and head South towards the sunshine, we chose Sault Brenaz, near Lyon France as our location.

Land based training may look silly but works a treat!

The aim of the course was to warm up for the fothcoming season and set some goals for future trips to the river this summer. Beni and Reto were superb guests, a nice start for my season, the sun shone and the sky was blue, we ate yummy food and drank tasty wine in the evenings at camp and generally had a first class time.

And of course a demonstration always helps

Enough wittering, here are a few videos courtesy of the Beni and Reto videoarchives.

Inflatable canoes can provide a lot of entertainment, surfs up!

No weekend would be complete without a comedy moment, Beni asked me to demonstrate how to stabalise yourself in a stopper or pourover and then an exit stragegy. Keeping your body upright and proud is good, looking down towards the paddle blade is bad, getting stuck in the stopper at the end of the demo, priceless!

After video analysis I think it is clear that I should of used cross deck paddle strokes to pull me out of the stopper because there was more green water on that side!

Thanks to Beni and Reto for a superb weekend, I hope to see you both for another course soon.
Today I start an Easter introduction to whitewater course on the Vorderrhein for Kanuschule, for details of upcoming courses check here, then Monday evening I'm back on the road and heading to Corsica for a cheeky week of steep creeks and Petra beer!
Paddle safe,