The Kayak Roll (Pool)

Location:
Genoveva Chavez Community Center
3221 Rodeo Road
Santa Fe, NM, 87507
See map: Google Maps
Start Time: 
Monday, September 26, 2011 - 5:30pm - 8:30pm
New Mexico Kayak Instruction

Rolling a kayak is an essential skill for any serious paddler. It is considered the safest form of a rescue, because it involves only one person, can be done in just a few seconds, and keeps you inside the kayak, protected from rocks, cold water and other hazards.

The complete course consists of a 1-hour "Classroom" and a 3-hour "Pool" lesson and kayak demo.

In this 4hr class, your instructor will lead you through a series of steps to build muscle memory, while using the proper technique to safely and effortlessly roll the kayak upright.

Here's a few things you'll learn:

  • 4 Myths to an effortless roll
  • 5 preventative measures to keep you from flipping
  • 7 easy drills you can practice to build muscle memory
  • 3 roll variations that work with different boats & body-types, and which conditions they work best
  • 7 advanced drills to take your pool roll to a reliable river "combat" roll

Although not required for the Intro to Whitewater Clinic, students who complete this class will have a more rewarding experience when pursuing more challenging water.  Anyone considering class III whitewater, expedition-style sea kayaking, or leading a group of paddlers, should master this essential skill.

The class will be taught using whitewater kayaks only, although an exception will be made if you own your own sea kayak.

Prerequisites:
Introduction to Kayaking (level 1) or "Level 1 (or 2) Assessment" from another ACA certified instructor is HIGHLY recommended! 

Succeeding courses: 
Whitewater Kayaking Made Easy 2-day Weekend (level 3)
Coastal Kayaking on Inland Waters (level 3)
Swiftwater Rescue (level 4)
Intro to Freestyle & Playboating Kayaking (level 4)

Note: Level 2 is not required for Level 3, but may be beneficial for those wanting to start out at a slower pace, or for those simply interested in recreational kayaking. 

Meet the Instructors:
Our instructors are our greatest assets. Each of our instructors are certified by the American Canoe Association (ACA). Founded in 1880, and funded largely by the US Coast Guard, the ACA is a nation-wide not for profit organization whose role is to make paddling education and instruction standardized and more accessible to the public.  Our instructors are certified to the highest levels, up to and including:

Level 2 Stand Up Paddling (or SUP'ing) Instructor
Level 4 Whitewater Kayak Instructor
Level 4 Open Water Coastal Kayaking Instructor
Level 4 Whitewater Kayak Instructor-Trainer
Level 4 Open Water Coastal Kayaking Instructor-Trainer
Level 4 Whitewater Paddle Raft Instructor-Trainer
Level 5 Advanced Swift Water Rescue Instructor

Instructors who work with kids are required to pass the same background and fingerprinting checks as required by Albuquerque Public Schools.

Our instructors are also leaders in their communities, and in their professions. 

View Instructor Credentials here

Our Guarantee:
You'll learn more in this 4-hour class than most people would learn in several seasons of informal training.  We're so confident your skills will increase, that we'll guarantee it!  If you don't feel more confident, more in control and more excited about paddling, we'll donate your course fees to your favorite charity, in your name!

Note: The Chavez Community Center in Santa Fe is only available for 3hr blocks of time, so all Intro to Kayak and Kayak Roll classes are 3hrs instead of 4hrs.  To ensure all topics are covered, and everyone receives individual attention during this limited time, class sizes are strictly capped to seven (7) for the Intro to Kayak class and five (5) for the Kayak Roll class.
Price: 
$80.25 Before Tax
Payment: 
A $25 non-refundable deposit is needed to reserve your spot in class. Classes are booked on a first-paid, first-reserved basis, so send in your deposit today!
Kelly is a great instructor. If you live in the Albuquerque area and want to learn kayaking, attend one of Kelly's classes.
Mark Nissan
Felt that my attempts at the roll are getting better.  Kelly's instruction is valuable and very precise.  I think he will help me get the roll done right.
Elaine Sweeney  -  'world traveler'

Frequently Asked Questions

Children 10 years or older can attend any flatwater lesson with a parent or guardian with legal responsibility.  However, I leave it to the parent or guardian to keep the children focused and engaged throughout the class.  Children under 10 years old can be taught in a private lesson.

 

A non-refundable deposit is required to reserve your spot. The deposit is non-refundable, and non-transferrable. We gladly accept Visa, Mastercard and Discover over the phone.  Checks can be made payable to:

"NMKI" (New Mexico Kayak Instruction)
5800 Osuna Rd NE #64
Albuquerque, NM 87109

Please let us know when your check is in the mail so we can be looking for it.

Classes are booked on a first-paid, first-reserved basis, so mail your checks early, or call 505-217-2187 to pay by credit card.

The non-refundable deposit goes to reserve your spot and cover certain fixed cost, like pool rental, insurance and assistant instructors. It's a two-way guarantee that you will do your best to attend, and that I will save a spot for you, provide you with a properly fitted kayak, and provide assistant instructors as needed, to keep the Student to Instructor ratio in check.

If you cannot attend, try to find someone who can take your spot, and work the deposit out between the two of you. They should contact me as soon as possible to ensure space is avaialble, and provide me with their height and weight, so I can bring the right sized kayak.

If, and only if, a class is full, can the deposit be refunded, or transferred to a different date.

Yes.  A lot of great material is covered in the classroom, and you'll learn a lot by attending or repeating the classroom lessons (and they're FREE!!).  However, the classroom material is completely independent of the pool lesson.  It doesn't matter which one you attend first.

The Intro to Kayak clinic is the foundation for everything I teach. It's a required prerequisite for the 2-day Whitewater Weekend clinics and the 2-day Touring Kayak Weekend clinics. The Kayak Roll is a good next step after the Intro to Kayak clinic, although not a requirement for the Whitewater or Touring Kayak Weekend clinics.

While learning to roll is a good skill, it's not the best place to start.  Rolling is a defensive measure.  Good boat control, judgement and an accurate assessment of your skills will keep you from rolling most of the time. 

You'll learn boat control in the Intro to Kayak and subsequent clinics. Those who complete the Intro to Kayak class have a much higher success rate in the Kayak Roll clinic.  A few hours in the boat learning to do smooth and controlled wet exits from a skirted kayak will be money well spent.  If you've spent little or no time in a decked kayak, your mind will simply be too distracted by flipping over and getting out to learn the Kayak Roll.

Flipping in a kayak (or "falling over") is part of the learning process, especially for beginners.  Like learning to walk, ride a bike, or snowboard - falling happens from time to time.  As our skills improve, frequency that we flip or fall, will be few and far between.  First, we should become comfortable doing a "wet exit" when it's upside down. This is covered at length in the "Intro to Kayak" class, and briefly in the "Kayak Roll" class; each in an indoor, heated pool.  The Wet Exit is incredibly simple and easy to do, and I'll demonstrate this procedure first, and will stand beside each person as they do it a few times.   It's very easy for the instructor to roll you back over, for the added assurance that you'll be OK.  It should get easier and easier, so that you're no longer afraid.  The "Kayak Roll" (or 'Eskimo Roll') is demonstrated a few tims in the "Intro to Kayak" class, but is beyond the scope of the 'Intro' class, thus is not formally taught.  To learn the Kayak Roll, check out the Kayak Roll class.  By practicing these skills, using good judgement and managing certain risk, we should be over-prepared for most adventures on flat water.

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