× Tips and techniques for getting the most out of surfskiing.

Does small bum and narrow hips cause instability

2 years 8 months ago #25519 by Love2ski
I have paddled more than 4500 km over the last 3 years mainly on a sport. I have got comfortable during that time and so have taken the next step to the swordfish
I am struggling with stability and my wife noticed yesterday that i am leaning to the left in the boat
Ive had the swordfish for a month and am getting nowhere
I also seem to have lost stability with the sport
Both skis have a very wide bucket and i have narrow hips and a small bum
I do not get anywhere near contacting the sides with my hips
In side bump both skis seem to roll around much more than my peers

Could this situation be a big cause of instability
If so should i pad out or look for a ski with a narrow bucket
Which intermediate skis have a narrow bucket?

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2 years 8 months ago #25520 by Ranga
The Sport has a bigger and wider seat than the Swordfish?
The Swordfish is a much more unstable ski, next step seems to be a step too far.
Yes a better fitting seat would help, however as the seats get narrower generally the skis also get narrower which is no help. You will have to pad up the sides with foam rubber.
Who convinced you that the Swordfish was a step up anyway, are they going to pay for the loss of money having to offload and get another ski that you can paddle. The Sport is plenty fast enough, well for me anyway, I average just under 15km/hr in downwind conditions.

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2 years 8 months ago #25521 by Love2ski
Thanks
The new swordfish has a wider seat
We compared it with an old one on the weekend and observed that the side thickness was about 1 cm on the new one versus about 3 cm on the old

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2 years 8 months ago #25522 by Midlifecrisis
I had the previous model V10 sport and found the bucket too big. I tried padding out the bucket but never managed to get something I was happy with. I'm sure there are others out there who can make wonderful seat pads but I didn't find it easy to make one.

Have you compared the seat width of the your V10 sport (if you still have it) and your Swordfish ?

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2 years 8 months ago #25523 by Love2ski
Thanks

I will compare the seat width, but they are both wide. The swordfish is surprisingly wide and I wouldn't be surprised if they were about the same.

I first tested an old model swordfish and found it to be snug and stable. I am thinking it was probably an old narrow seat model. My new one is not feeling stable and has a wide seat.

When I think about it I don't hit the sides of either the sport or the swordfish until the ski is heeled right over and basically going over. I am going to bulk up my paddling pants with foam on the weekend to see what difference it makes.

Logically if the only connection I have with the ski is my skinny bum and my feet then the ski has a far greater ability to roll from side to side. For those with big wide bums where there is plenty of contact with the sides of the boat, the ability of the boat to wobble would be reduced. Plus as a paddler the increased connection must communicate that the boat is rolling far quicker.

The other thing I should do is try the evo11 as it apparently has a narrow bucket which might help me big time.

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2 years 8 months ago #25524 by Madpaddler75
I have an Evo 2 and feel the Swordfish S is more planted in the water then the Evo 2. The Evo2 is stable but does have a liveliness about it the the swordfish doesn't. Seat in the Evo 2 is pretty snug.

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2 years 8 months ago #25525 by Love2ski
Thanks,

I think the new swordfish might have a similar level of liveliness to the evo 11. I checked them out next to each other on the weekend and the swordfish rudder has been moved forward and is now level with the evo.

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2 years 8 months ago #25526 by Rod Thomas

Love2ski wrote: I am struggling with stability and my wife noticed yesterday that i am leaning to the left in the boat. Ive had the swordfish for a month and am getting nowhere. I also seem to have lost stability with the sport

You might find that working on your technique helps. A couple of years ago I felt the same as you: leaning to one side to compensate for the ski leaning the other. Ivan Lawler UK Epic rep told me to push down with my lower hand instead of pulling back with it. This really helped my stability (along with leaning forward, rotation, etc etc), coz now the paddle supports me.

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2 years 8 months ago #25527 by jagter
Padding the sides of the bucket will make a world of difference. You can't be stable if you slide from side to side each time the ski tilts.

Just duct tape some pieces of camping mattress to the side, around the area of your hip bone, add layers as needed. Once you have the thickness and positioning sorted you can work on a more permanent and better looking solution.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Steve Hansen

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2 years 8 months ago #25528 by crallan
Short answer: Yes. For padding that is... I had the wide arse version of the 'old' SF wich was to wide for me. Padding it up gave me a totaly different sense for what the ski was up to. More contact, better control and increased stability. Now I have the new SFs witch is right in the middle between the old narrow and wide versions. Maybe a tad on the wide side but super stable.

Swordfish S Carbon
Swordfish glass vacuum

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2 years 8 months ago #25529 by Ranga
You were sold a wide seat Swordfish, they have a standard and a wide. The standard is around 30mm from outside of the hull to inside the seat.

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2 years 8 months ago #25530 by crallan
Yep, that's correct.

Swordfish S Carbon
Swordfish glass vacuum

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2 years 8 months ago #25532 by Rolli
I have also had problems with to small bum and narrow hips when paddling. When I was training more I also of course lost some weight. This also noticed in the surfski when I was out on a regular training route. Not much waves, that normally would have been no problem, but I did struggle alot with balance. I started to think what am I doing wrong. Later when back home, I noticed when I was sitting on the floor as in a surfski I was actually not sitting on the "bum". Instead I was sitting on the "bones" in the bum. This ofcourse hardly no contact with the ski. This was not so fun because I was sliding from side to side and slowly it was getting hard to sit down because of pain. So I found a solution that has worked for me anyway. Of course some changes to technique helped as well, as you can read in earlier answers in this topic. My solution was a very thin "sleeping mat" and "self adhesive book cover foil". The cover foil helps for rotation. Padding on sides or even inside my paddling shorts did not help, it just got worse. I hope that you will find a solution that works for you.
Attachments:

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2 years 8 months ago #25536 by photofr
Clearly, a super loose seat is going to make stability a lot worst, but here are couple of things that could help:
1. Pad your bucket (almost to a perfect custom-fit).
2. Stay in super calm water for a few sessions.
3. Stop using your paddle… behind your waist (keep all strokes way up front).
4. Work on your breathing… breathe out a whole lot more… and stability WILL COME BACK.

4, 3, and 2 will really help, but you will be so surprised at how much #1 above will have you feel like you are in a different ski. Definitely a problem for all smaller paddlers.

Alternatively:
Take a V8 or similar (from a friend). Put in 4 days a week on the water for 3 weeks - and you will be ready for your swordfish. Sure will save you a lot of money.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)

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2 years 8 months ago #25539 by Kayaker Greg
My Swordfish is incredibly stable and comfortable, in case you have not seen any of my albums on fitting out a seat check this out. Any contact with the ski should increase control without hindering movement (don't make it too tight).

www.facebook.com/kayaker.greg/media_set?...0002425151844&type=3

I too had the observation made by my coach at the time that I was leaning to one side, he advised I go to his Osteopath for a check up, sure enough one hip was slightly higher than the other, one treatment and a follow up was all it took to remedy that imbalance.

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2 years 8 months ago #25540 by Fath2o
Make sure you confirm that it is you and not your surfski that is leaning to one side. I purchased a new "Elite" and had been paddling it a while before I realized I was leaning to the left. At first I thought it was just me, until I set the ski in still water and looked at it. It definitely had something like a 3-5 degree list to the port side. Needless to say it was extremely annoying. I then found out another paddler had the same problem with a new Mako 6 prior to my experience. Fortunately for him he was able to return it. I inspected the interior of the hull to find the workmanship and quality control to be extremely poor.Makes me wonder if factory rejects are shipped to the US ?
Good luck.

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2 years 8 months ago #25543 by Marieski
My bum and hips are too narrow for anything except the Spark. I guess I just got used to it. Cos the size of the skis didn't help either.

On the leaning to the side issue, I discovered myself leaning to the right, which I do more when I'm tired and more if I feel unstable. It is because Iam extremely right handed and much more stable on my right. In fact I my "brace stroke" on the left is a violent throw to the right followed by a right sided brace. It is extremely difficult to get myself not to do this. But I have hardly ever fallen in on the right, always on the left. So the tilt to the right for me is my body' s subconcious lean to its stronger side.

Past skis: Spirit PRS, EpicV10Sport Performance, Epic V10 Elite, Stellar SES Advantage. Current skis: Fenn Elite Spark, Fenn Swordfish vacuum. Custom Horizon, Epic V7

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2 years 8 months ago #25544 by Love2ski
Thanks, I guess my left side is my dominant side. I am sure it is making me slow because the lean of the ski would be making it turn to the right, which must be countered by having the rudder constantly turned to the left.

I really noticed this last week when paddling sideways to a large swell. The ski kept wanting to round up and out to sea when I had the swell coming from my right side, and when I came back and the swell was on my left it kept wanting to head into shore. I know the rudder is straight!

It is frustrating and I am trying to cure it by doing everything opposite to how I normally paddle. If I normally hang my left leg out for a rest, I am hanging my right. I am getting on the ski opposite side to how I normally would. I am trying to paddle intentionally leaning to the right. I am turning the ski around in the opposite direction to normal.

Doing all these things feels very much like trying to write with my non preferred hand.

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2 years 8 months ago - 2 years 7 months ago #25554 by Skiwalker
Love2ski,

I had the same issue when I upgraded from a XT to an Evo2 (my current boat). I was sliding around from side to side at first and could not stay centered. Very frustrating and strange considering the evo2 is a tighter fit. I padded my shorts which helped a bit but the breakthrough came when I shortened the leg length. Not quite sure why but once I got used to the tippiness of having higher knees I was no longer slipping in the bucket. I think the extra leg drive helped to apply good contact with the back of the seat and also helped with my technique in general. It took about 2 months though to get back to where I was in the XT.

Hope this helps...

1.Fenn XT
2.Think Evo 2
3. ...

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