-News in Brief
-SPEED for Wild Water Racing
-What is speed?
---Energy system for speed.
-Canoeists, Injuries, Posture and Stretching
--River Racer's Joke
News in BriefDecided by popular demand at the AGM , November 1999: The split season has been dropped. Entry to Div A remains by promotion but Div B will now have all classes merged to improve prospects of promotion if the entry is low in MK1.
Howard Blackman has resigned as National Development Coach due to pressure of other work. The Exec are yet to annouce his replacement.
A report on canoe helmets has been produced by Chris Hawkesworth (manufacturer of WildWater branded helmets and canoeing eqipment), BCU Planning and Facilities Manager. This recommends that the BCU requires all participants in organised BCU events on white water to wear CEN (European Community) approved helmets from 1 Jan 2000. This recommendation would appear to extend the current ``duty of care'' of organisers and may set a precedent for further changes such as tests of competence. The WWR Exec are taking this up within BCU. If you have have an opinion get get your vote into the Exec now!
Nouveau Boatjolais(a hilarious play on words concerning a regional wine festival.)
by Mike Mason
Jamie (the Pocket Rocket), Cynthia (Bezza the virgin bride), Rob (pant style-guru) and myself (unorganised dole-bludger), as well as the Slovenian team went to a French team training camp at the Ardèche in November and had a mighty fine training time - although not in the tropical Mediterranean climes that I was expecting. To start the proceedings there is the traditional 35km race down the the Ardèche gorge, with about 1000 competitors and the typical mad start shenanigans that can only be experienced at such an event. Of the leading racers it is really a who's who of International Downriver with Wohlers and a similarly unstylish (but effective) German winning the K2 from Fargier and Desmerger in 95 minutes. Having warmed up for the event with a training camp in Lyon for the week, James and Ross came away with a pot in the C2 class - nice work fellas.
Ever the professionals, we refrained from moshing the night away at the all-night alcohol fuelled European- style techno rave that takes place in the name of a post race party and took part in the Pagalthon the following day. Jamie paid the price of starting too fast over the 4km run with slaps around the head, Rob's protruding finger and max pulses. I managed to maintain my run position in the return river leg for a 7th place finish and Rob held off Jamie to keep the honour of the single blade. The next day the training camp officially started with weight lifting tests in the gym followed by a run / mountain climb where we learned of the pioneering discovery style of Yves Masson's training plans. With the Ardèche at a pretty good level we then paddled some of its upper stretches with some good whitewater. Over the next 4 days was plenty of running, a couple more paddles down the gorge, weights and LOADS of technique videoing, including at two different points over a 20 minute time trial and on an artificial slalom course. Bruno Boyer was extremely helpful with the video analysis with all 3 of us Brit kayaks picking up good pointers - particularly the importance of starting rotation from the abs and pelvis and getting the blade inserted deep at the front extreme of our reach without wasting effort pulling air. Perhaps the most memorable event of the week was taking part in the orienteering race over the thickly vegetated hill sides around the gorge. With 7 control points it was an excellent way to do 2-3 hours of fun aerobic exercise. However it must have been less of a laugh for Cynth with the tasty Cankar sisters when they were lead around a 45 minute loop back to the start by their guide (who had been around the course the day before). Rob the mountain guide set a ferocious pace for the British Beef team and we only missed victory by not being told an important instruction that would have avoided a 300 foot death defying near-vertical scree slope slide. One helpful instruction that we did note was to continually make as much noise as possible to warn off the large number of `piig savarge' (wild boar) and drunk hillbilly hunters that hang around the countryside. The evening was spent recounting the day's tales, nursing sprained ankles and removing the many thousands of thorns and splinters in our bodies.
What did become evident over the week is that the French team are not superhuman superior genetically engineered machines that are born to make a boat travel fast. They work hard by putting alot of effort into their general aerobic conditioning and gym strength at this time of year, emphasise the importance of good effective technique, pay a lot of attention to detail and have perfected how to peak their athletes at the right time to great effect. Even Fargier went pop on a gorge paddle. Jean Yves Cheutin - France's top kayak slalom paddler - also joined in with the aerobic training.
Rob matched the C1s stroke for stroke on the water. They became disturbed at this and worked out a plan to finally eliminate him. It was very cunning indeed to encourage him to train with same weights that they use. Rob, ever on his guard, saw through the plan and avoided hurting his arms unnecessarily by dropping the weights onto his head, so developing a very hard no-mess look with 3 stitches and a bruised chin. We're proud of your guile Rob. The kayakers still prefer the Esox and short paddles (a range of 203 - 207 cm for the men and about 202 cm for the chicks). Two new imaginatively titled (not) boats were being extensively tested over the week. The Savage 3000 from Zástera is similar to the DD Hosanna (ie dull) and the Prijon Vézère is an attractive big beast in an Italian gem-like angular way but was thought to bob too much in waves.
For those looking for somewhere good to go for a training camp I can certainly recommend the CREPS centre where we all lodged - best described as basic but extremely functional. For 14 quid a day the dorms allowed Rob to parade his fine pant selection in a seductive manner and Jamie to test Bezza's resolve to vulgarity and maleness. Three substantial meals a day in proper French cuisine are excellent for keeping energy levels up and to annoy the awkward moaning vegetarian. The river and slalom course are situated at the bottom of the garden and the effective drying rooms became known as the gas chamber. If you take motorway routes to avoid paying excessive amounts of tolls, driving time is approximately 12 hours from Oostende.
So back to Blighty fully motivated with lots of training ideas and a craving for Heinz Beans. Cheers to the Exec for supporting this training trip with a helpful grant.
SPEED for Wild Water Racing
by Martin Streeter
Sounding Off. What a bizarre year for WWR in '99. Our best results for some time at the pre-worlds, low attendance at races, disunity about the split season and all we can do is carry on MOANING. That's what we do best. Well I'm sad because word of mouth is very influential, these negative vibes will reduce our sport further. In valuing ``volunteers'', which is what the committee are, what message and motivation does it offer them. (I'm not on the committee by the way) but I know they have the best interests of you the paddler. They cannot do ALL the work to put us on the road to recovery. Sometimes the most effective route is to get your idea approved and then work on it yourself or in a group. The Committee now has several focused sub committees which hope to tackle problems. They really need more experts and volunteers to help. The latest project is for the new ``Communication Team''. Its aim is to get us prepared for a 2002 Junior Worlds bid and to improve our public profile and circulation. Enough politics, let's get into SPEED, no not the drug, the commodity you'll require for your races this year.
What is speed?Speed is the quickness of movement of limb or torso, speed is an integral part of wild water racing. Speed can be expressed as any one of, or combination of, the following:
- Maximum speed
- Elastic strength (power)
- Speed endurance
Energy system for speed. Energy for absolute speed is supplied by the anaerobic alactic pathway. The anaerobic (without oxygen) alactic (without lactate) energy system is best challenged as a paddler approaches top speed between 20 and 50m while paddling at 95% to 100% of maximum. This speed component of anaerobic metabolism lasts for approximately six seconds and should be trained when no muscle fatigue is present (usually after 24 to 36 hours of rest). When should speed work be conducted? It is important to remember that the improvement of speed is a complex process that is controlled by the brain and nervous system. In order for a paddler to go more quickly, the arm and back muscles of course have to contract more quickly, but the brain and nervous system also have to learn to control these faster movements efficiently. If you maintain some form of speed training throughout the year, your muscles and nervous system do not loose the feel of moving fast and the brain will not have to re-learn the proper control patterns at a later date. Speed work should be carried out after a period of rest or light training. In a training session speed work should be conducted after the warm up and any other training should be of low intensity.
Speed PrinciplesThe general principles for improved speed are as follows:
- Work on going at velocities that are actually faster than your goal over short work intervals.
- Train at goal pace in order to enhance your neuromuscular coordination, confidence and stamina at your desired speed.
- At first, utilise long recoveries, but as you get fitter and faster shorten the recovery periods between work intervals to make your training more specific and realistic to racing. Also move on to longer work intervals as you are able.
- Work on your aerobic capacity and conduct some easy pace runs to burn calories and permit recovery from the speed sessions.
Work on your mobility to develop a range of movement (range of motion at your hips will effect speed) and assist in the prevention of injury. Flexibility and a correct warm up will affect stroke length and frequency.
Special Offer. Are you a senior or junior paddler with aspirations for the year? Bored with your training venue? Then take a break, why not stay with Jacqui and me in Bedfordshire. We have a spare room and a well stocked fridge. The R Ouse and Viking/Star Rowing Club with 30mins drive, free access to the mighty RAF Henlow's gym and some nice off road jogging/biking routes. Guaranteed quality training and all free except getting here.
Canoeists, Injuries, Posture and Stretching
I have been prompted to write this because of a recent injury to my shoulder, more specifically, a pulled deltoid muscle. My problem started very suddenly as a sharp pain in the deltoid at the start of the stroke which, at first, only persisted until I had warmed up but as time went on it would come and go during sessions.
After the first incidence I went to a physio at ``uny'' as this is free to students. I was told I had a very small tear on the insertion of my deltoid (what ever that means) and was instructed to stretch it two or three times a day, which is what I did. A couple of weeks later with plenty of stretching the problem returned during a warm up run on a river. This then persisted off the water for the first time, resulting in me not racing.
A return visit to a different physio (a British team physio) I was told I had torn my deltoid at the insertion again and prescribed two weeks complete rest.
So two weeks later I started training again taking approximately another two weeks to get back into full training. I had no further problems until after the Europeans when it suddenly kicked off again.
I was recommended by some of the guys at NKC to go and see Andy Thomas (Dr PAIN) Osteopath. He was expensive and I went as a last resort. What he did and told me was very interesting and is why I am writing, as I can see a lot of the postural problems I have in other paddlers.
Firstly he said I'd never injured my deltoid and that the pain was referred from my neck. He promptly produced the same pain in the same position in my deltoid by probing his fingers into my neck. He went on to fix a couple of other ongoing problems I was having, which were all related to my back and neck, by stretching muscles he reduced the influences they were having on my back (this was very painful). All were caused by many years of canoeing and general poor posture.
This is what he told me: Canoeing is a seated sport with a repetitive action, therefore:
- Being seated all the time with slightly bent legs causes your hamstrings to shorten which will cause your lower back to be pulled down and so pull your back slightly out of shape. Causing you to hunch over slightly.
- The seated position also means your stomach muscles are being worked in a shortened state and so they then shorten. This means when you stand up and your stomach muscles aren't as long as they should be, your sternum is pulled down causing you to hunch over and your head to extend out forwards.
- Trying to improve your catch and always reaching forward means your pecs are also working in a shortened position and cause your pec muscles to shorten, pulling your shoulders forward.
If you add all these together you will probably recognise the typical canoeists posture. This is also exacerbated by lots of office type work etc. where you are always leaning forwards over a desk or a computer and by generally poor posture.
This can all be fixed or prevented by stretching, of which I am now convinced. Unfortunately its taken me a torn muscle which wasn't really a torn muscle, 3 physios, an osteopath and approx. £200 to find this out.
Each muscle should be stretched for 3 minutes at least, no bouncing and no pain, just enough pressure to make a good stretch. Over stretching can cause more problems than it can cure so take care.
I have written the above from
my own knowledge or what I have been told by others, I am not an expert so it is probably full of
holes, but hopefully the general principles are correct.
Repeated Advice ``Drugs? I didn't take Drugs!'' But what was that strange ingredient in those Peruvian Jelly Beans that tasted so good? If in doubt call the Doping Control Unit of the UK Sports Council on 020 7383 5667. Besides you do not want to be explaining those marble sized testicles or facial hair to your grandchildren do you? See the training through and learn from it, good luck.
River Racer's Joke
Quentin, a gay man goes into a bar. There he sees a famous river racer, called Howard.
``Hello sailor, would you like to buy a boat for only a hundred quid?''
They go out side and look at the boat, a brand new Super-Savage with all the trimmings. Now Howard is nobody's fool and wants to know where it came from.
``Well'', says Quentin, ``My friends gave me a brass lamp for Christmas and when I was cleaning it a voice said `Man of earth, man of clay, make a wish and I will make your day.' Would you like to try it?''
Howard is a little sceptical, but nothing ventured nothing gained, so he gives the lamp a rub and sure enough a voice says: `Man of earth, man of clay, make a wish and I will make your day.'
Howard does so and a few minutes later the pub floor is covered with squid. There must be a million of them.
``This isn't want I asked for'', says Howard, ``He must have misheard me!''
``Well'', says Quentin, ``Do you think I asked for a savage with a big deck?''
Contributions for the Summer issue of WWW, to be sent to WWW, 20 Highridge, Alton, Hants, GU34 1QW by June 2000. WWW is edited by James Lee and Stuart Smith. WWW is sponsored by the WWR Executive Committee. Views expressed in WWW are not necessarily those of the WWR Executive Committee. This is your forum to have your say!
Esox Race boat 10kg very strong excellent condition raced 3 times. Full carbon Kevlar epoxy autoclaved. £550 o.n.o. Jamie Christie. 0115 981 3931.
Gaybo Savage (big deck) VGC Has had little use £425. Contact J. Henshall 01530 563467.
Carbon-Kevlar, New Zealand high deck Savage. Very good condition. £500 including neoprene spray deck. Phone Louise on 01253 862889.
Gaybo Savage. Want to get rid of it, no leaks £80. Stuart Smith 0115 9866 915
Wavehopper As new condition, no scuffs. £300. Stuart Smith 0115 9866 915
4 sets Blades HR river race and flat water wings 210 to 217. Ask for details. Stuart Smith 0115 9866 915.
Cag Deck BushSport, black, large. £50 01524 8585797.
Wanted: Thule van bars for a cheap price. Jamie Christie 0115 981 3931 or Email email@example.com