Just found out we will be racing as a team of 3 vs 4 for WT this weekend. Any tips to make the middle position on the paddle more comfortable for me for 6+ hours?
Get a good seat to put in the boat. Grab the longest boat available. Talk about what your 'plan' will be and let the front of the boat be the cadence setter. Set your seat and position paddlers (and packs) so that you are well balanced.... better a little heavy in back than in front.
... prepare to hate life for 30 of 34 kms :-) - that's more of a personal thing.. I hate 3 in a boat!!! and I'm on a team of 3 ;(
Only saving grace is you should be faster!!
And all the portages will be easier! After trying a few different things, we now use a plastic folding step stool with rubber feet. We got it at Canadian Tire years ago but they probably still have something similar. For more comfort over a long distance, you can glue or strap on some thin foam, e.g. from an old camping sleeping pad.
Also, what FB said.
Which team members are still racing? I'll update the website.
I prefer a foam kneeling pad to a seat/stool. The latter also makes the boat more top-heavy as we found out the hard way. Depends on your preference for spinal comfort and how technical the water is. And yes like FB said, 3 is significantly faster than 2.
So helpful. Thank you!! As long as I don't tip the boat and dump my teammates, I will be a happy camper.
Bash it will be myself, C and P. G has a fractured elbow :(
Kneeling was actually the first method we tried but it made my feet go totally numb after a few hours so now I only kneel in whitewater. I'm sure it works for some other people though.
Kneeling works for me right up until I think about actually doing it ;-)
Used to be able to and it is much more stable. Don't think I could ever have done it for 34 km... not since I left my teens behind anyways...
Kneeling definitely sounds good in theory but I know when I have tried it in shorter events, my feet were numb and my knees were screaming not long after.
There is also the combo approach, of a small seat which is straddled plus a kneeling pad, so your weight is distributed among the seat and the knees, and you are still pretty low in the boat. There are a few commercially available (but don't look to be highly packable)