How To Flatwater Cartwheel

I realised that one tutorial which would probably help with some of my other recent posts like how to tricky woo, lunar orbit or double pump would be how to cartwheel. Continuing with the same layout as previous posts, a cartwheel is officially defined as “at least two consecutive ends in the same rotational direction, […]

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How To Surf In A Stopper

In this post I’m going to go right back to basics and explain how to surf in a hole/stopper (which is where water pours over a submerged object causing the surface water to flow back upstream towards the object). Whether you’re interested in freestyle or river running this is probably one of the first things […]

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How To Flatwater Loop

In this post I’m going to be following on from two of my previous tutorials (https://patrickyak.blog/2020/05/08/how-to-double-pump/ and https://patrickyak.blog/2020/07/02/how-to-bow-stall/) and will explain how to loop on flatwater. Once you can confidently double pump and bow stall, learning to flatwater loop isn’t particularly difficult and could be learned within a few hours if you really put your […]

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How To Back Deck Roll

The back deck is one of the most popular rolling techniques when kayaking, it is easy to learn if you can already sweep roll and is much faster to complete making it a favourite with whitewater paddlers. In this tutorial I will be assuming that you can already sweep roll comfortably and that you understand […]

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Sweet Rocker vs Strutter

In this post I’m going to review and then compare the Rocker and Strutter helmets made by Sweet Protection, both are very popular helmets but it can be difficult to decide which one is right for you, especially right now where it may be impossible to actually try on or examine either. I currently own […]

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Why Your Off-Side Matters

Everyone is stronger on one side than the other and it’s tempting to forget about your off-side, it’s weaker, it’s slower and it’s more difficult – right? However, you won’t become a balanced paddler thinking like that and it will stunt your freestyle development in the long run. I put off learning tricks on my […]

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My Lockdown Playlist

You guys seemed to like my last music post so here’s 5 great albums by bands that I’ve discovered over the last six months… Starting off with a group which almost certainly wouldn’t have attained the popularity that they have done without the release of this album in July 2015, we have the album ‘Currents’ […]

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Don’t Skip The Warm-Up!

Warming up is boring. You want to get on the water and start paddling, stretches only slow you down and get in the way. Wrong! I’ve managed to pull my shoulders and lower back a couple of times while kayaking and normally these things go away in a few hours, but last Tuesday I injured […]

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Chertsey Weir

Last Saturday I went to Chertsey and spent the day there. I’m going to go over what I thought of the feature, give a few tips as well as explain the typical things like how to get there, safety and whether I think it’s really worth travelling to in order to train… Chertsey will be […]

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How To Bow Stall

It’s been a while since my last tutorial post (How To Double Pump) so I thought I’d do a follow up article explaining the next step – how to bow stall. Some people manage to figure this out almost immediately and others take months, I found that the process requires three key steps and once […]

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How To Double Pump

The double pump is pretty much the first thing you should learn if you’re trying to do any sort of flatwater freestyle. Effectively it’s the first end of a cartwheel and it sets you up to learn more complicated tricks like a tricky woo or loop. Some people learn how to tailee beforehand but I […]

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Why Flatwater Is So Useful

I know that some people don’t bother practicing freestyle on flatwater, maybe it never occurred to them or they don’t think there are any benefits so they never tried it. This post is dedicated to persuading such people to try training on flatwater, maybe before a session on whitewater or simply for convenience because it […]

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Look Where You Want To Go!

One of the most common mistakes I see people making (not only for freestyle but for kayaking in general) is that they’re not looking where they want to go. I make this mistake all the time and it’s annoying seeing myself in a video later and realising. Sometimes you’re tired and you just forget, or […]

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Gear Rundown

Head-to-toes winter checklist – I’ve tried wearing a couple of different bits of kit and some of it works really well and some of it doesn’t (I just have to wait for it to break so I can justify getting something better); I’ll recommend the equipment I like and I’ll be blunt about things like […]

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Pyranha Ozone

I was afraid that if I tried the Pyranha Ozone at Lee Valley I’d want one. I tried it. Now I want one. For those of us who don’t know, the Ozone is Pyranha’s latest release and replaces the Inazone in their “freeride” (river-play) category; in layman’s terms, freeride means you can perform modern freestyle […]

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How To Loop On Whitewater

In this post I’m going to explain how to loop, going over set-up and finishing as well as body, boat and paddle position throughout the movement with some tips to improve snappiness and height throughout. I will assume that you can comfortably move about on grade 2 or 3 whitewater – by comfortable I mean […]

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TVF Pop Pro Duo MK2

For those of us who do not know what an overthruster is, ever seen one of those phallic inflatable air bags a lot freestylers have jammed between their legs? It’s one of those (pictured above). I really like using them because they improve both comfort and performance while freestyling. The top section prevents your spraydeck […]

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How To Phonics Monkey

This is one of the hardest tricks to learn but it is also one of the most impressive. A phonics is defined as a “pirouette initiated by a cross-bow stroke in a front surf position, followed by a front loop in one fluid motion,” and it is worth 140 points (190 with air) which makes […]

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How To Outfit A New Kayak

I have spent quite a lot of time outfitting each of my playboats; starting with my original 2016 Rockstar I then progressed to a plastic Jed and now a carbon Jed; I also have an Exo Rexy for river running. Each of these boats has come with slightly different stock outfitting and consequently I’ve had […]

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I Burst My Eardrum

I have recently come back from a month on the Ottawa river where I was unfortunate enough to blow my eardrum on the first day. I’m going to explain how I burst my eardrum, ways to avoid doing the same thing and how I coped with the issue while minimising my days off the water; […]

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