Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Storm Gathering USA: Class Descriptions

Photo Credit: Mark Tozer Collection.

Storm Gathering USA Website

Important Reading:

  • To ensure your safety and that of your fellow paddlers, please read through the self-assessment criteria before making your class choices.
  • Possible venues include Trinidad State Beach, Trinidad Harbor, Moonstone Beach, Big Lagoon County Park and Humboldt Bay. Actual venues will be determined by the prevailing weather and marine forecasts during weekend.
  • When purchasing a full event ticket (option one & option two), you are registering to participate in four classes during the symposium
  • Please pick your first four class choices, and list them in the priority that you wish to take them. That is, the class that you’d like to take the most, list first.
  • The Storm Gathering USA Team will do their best to give you your first choices. To help us, in case of class cancellations or maximum numbers reached, please provide four additional choices (total of eight).
  • We will consider your learning progression while scheduling the classes. However, there will need to be some flexibility as to which session you take which class.
  • ALL classes are subject to weather and sea conditions. We reserve the right to make changes to venues, schedules, instructors and students at any time.
  • The Storm Gathering USA Team will not provide refunds due to weather or sea conditions. We will work to provide alternate classes and safe venues as appropriate.
  • By signing up you are accepting the risks with full knowledge that we cannot guarantee safe sea conditions for all classes.

All Levels

Effective Forward Paddling

This stripped-down, back-to-basics, paddling essentials session with coach-led analysis of your performance, will focus on how to generate efficient forward boat speed. If you are looking to get more miles for less effort in stormy conditions, or are hoping to ready yourself for greater challenges, this is the class for you. The class will include a number of on-water activities to improve performance.

Developing Boat Control

The aim of this class is to look at the principles of active posture, balance and connection to develop more fluid boat control skills. The focus of this session is improving bracing, maneuvering and directional control through stroke analysis and dynamic coaching activities. The goal is to enable you to become a more efficient paddler, whatever the conditions.

Fun with Foster

Description coming soon!

Simplifying the Roll

This is a multi-level class. Topics that can be covered include first rolls, other-side rolls, layback paddle rolls, forward finish paddle rolls, norsaq rolls, hand rolls and beyond. The techniques examined can be used with any type of paddle and any type of kayak.

Kayak Sailing

Seen as safety features in Australia where the modern kayak sail was developed, sails provide auxiliary power and increased visibility. Sailing develops an understanding of wind and helps with mastering slicing strokes. It’s also a ton of fun. Learn to raise and lower the sail, stow it efficiently and use it to sail across the wind, paddle-sail up to 45-degrees upwind and, of course, fly downwind. Catching wind-waves suddenly becomes easy. Practice a roll with a sail, and learn to modify a quick capsize recovery. The Flat Earth Kayak Sails used for this class are authentic Australian sails which freely permit all paddle strokes, edging and performance paddling. The sail folds flush on the deck when not in use. Suction-cup-mounted sails are available to attach to your fiberglass deck.

Level 1 - 2

Surf Zone Fundamentals

This class takes participants into a gentle surf zone where they will learn fundamental surf zone skills. Participants will develop confidence while learning to read the water. This class is about comfort, safety and understanding the dynamics of the surf zone, it is not about learning to “surf,” although that may be covered as well.

Storm Paddling Essentials

This class will give participants a safe and enjoyable introduction to storm paddling with the emphasis on essential kayak skills to develop boat confidence and abilities. Participants will be introduced to a range of boat handling techniques for use in wind and swell.

Fundamentals of Rock Gardening

This class is for those new to rock gardening. You’ll learn essential rock gardening skills, such as timing waves and swell, reading water and safely playing around rocks, tunnels and/or caves.

Core Rescue Skills

Performing a deep-water rescue at sea does not have to be a complex task. The aim of this class is to enable participants to come away with a clear understanding of the key principles involved when performing a rescue. Participants will explore a range of common scenarios and be shown straightforward strategies that can be practiced with confidence. Both self and assisted rescues will be covered.

The Fundamentals of Sea Kayak Leadership

This class will focus on the fundamental of leadership needed by sea kayakers who want to take responsibility for others in easy and moderate sea conditions. Participants will journey along a suitable stretch of coastline, exploring the principles of planning/anticipation, communication/group management, route choice and positioning.

Ocean Journey

This class will cover the essentials needed when planning a coastal sea kayak journey. Participants will go for a journey in a sheltered coastal location. By the end of the class participants will understand the planning and considerations that should be done before day tripping on the ocean.

Level 2 - 3

Long Boat Surfing

Participants will learn how to safely catch and ride a wave in a sea kayak. The aim is to draw upon the knowledge and expertise of respected coaches who will enhance the participants understanding of surf skills.

Short Boat Surfing

Participants will learn how to safely catch and ride a wave in a short boat. The aim is to draw upon the knowledge and expertise of respected coaches who will enhance the participants understanding of surf skills.i

Moderate Water Boat Handling

This session will have participants paddling with confidence and efficiency in moderate water conditions. Participants will learn how to turn with accuracy and control using their boat to its full potential. The session will take a progressive approach, building upon established skills while exploring the ocean coastline.

Whitewater of the Sea

In this class participants will use whitewater kayaks to find features and work on water reading, finesse and timing to play, play, play. Participants will learn to move their boat more efficiently, work with the water and maybe even get creative with some fancy moves. A reliable roll is required.

Intermediate Rock Gardening

This class is for those who have previous experience rock gardening and would like to take things up a notch. The class will take place in rock gardens that are more exposed to swell and waves, have tighter turns, more obstacles and longer pourovers than the Fundamentals of Rock Gardening class. Previous rock garden experience is required.

Combat Rolling

This class is for those with a “pool” or “flat water” roll who want to try using it in a more dynamic setting. The class will take place in a gentle surf zone, where participants will become more comfortable rolling in both surf and with obstacles that are often present in a “combat” situation (such as sand or rocks).

Incident Management

This class is designed to cover skills and procedures that will help participants develop a step-by-step approach to handle potential incidents on the ocean while under pressure. As an active group, participants will be faced with a number of challenging scenarios. The aim of the program is to decrease the chances of these incidents from occurring and increase each individual’s ability to deal with them safely using clear operating principles.

Practical Leadership & Group Dynamics

The goal of this class is to share thoughts, experiences and elements of leadership theory in a practical, interactive way, which will enable intermediate and advanced sea kayakers to become more aware of the role they play in group paddling dynamics. The class will use boat based activities and/or scenarios which will help participants to take on an effective leadership role.

Sea Journey 

If you are planning to leave the coastline behind and head out for the distant blue horizon, or if you are looking for top tips and techniques to fine-tune your open ocean planning skills, then this class is for you. Participants will receive advice and practical training to help them to prepare for their own offshore adventures in the future.

Level 3

Tricky Launch, Tricky Landing

This class will look at launching and landing in tricky surf zones. This class is not about surfing, but instead it covers reading a tricky launch or landing site and the techniques to get you through the surf zone effectively. Please note that this is an advanced-level class that takes place in a tricky (but safe) surf zone. Participants must have previous experience in surf and a reliable roll.

Rough Water Boat Handling

This class is for intermediate and advanced paddlers who want to master the skills needed to maneuver a sea kayak efficiently in rough water and challenging conditions. Participants will develop confident boat control using swell and waves. They will paddle the most exposed parts of the coast, actively searching out “adventure.” Strong seamanship skills, solid paddling ability and a desire to get a bit out of your comfort zone are a must.

Rock Garden Safety and Rescue

In this class participants will learn how to safely maneuver through tricky rock gardens, caves and/or tunnels that are directly exposed to swell and/or waves. Scenarios will be presented that the group will come up with solutions for. Please note that this is an advanced-level class and requires previous rock garden experience and a dependable roll.

The main Storm Gathering USA website can be found here.

Contact us if you have any questions, queries or want more information about the event.

The Storm Gathering USA Team.

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