Training for Sickline
By Nick Troutman
Well the summer has come and gone, like it or not it is already September. With my last freestyle event being the Garb Rodeo on the Ottawa last weekend, comes the end of the rodeo tour, though with the changing of the seasons comes the autumn race circuit.
In the next two months we have several races coming up, including the Sickline, Gauley, Russell Fork, Green river, and Alsesseca races.
With all these races coming up EJ and I decided to start a little race training. Now the Ottawa isn’t known for it’s technical lines and creek atmosphere, it’s much better known for its large flat water sections and sweet play waves. Though we were able to work around it and make due with what we had.
EJ and I did some race sprints down the Initiation rapid with several different lines. We did 30-second sprints, all the way up to 75-second courses. We also did a couple workouts in the flat water, with our biggest sprints being around 5 minutes. So far EJ has beaten me at ever race we have done, though I haven’t given up yet. I have spent 6 years training with him in a freestyle boat and only recently started beating him, so I figure I just need some more time when it comes to the racing.
My boat of choice for race season will be the Villain and Villain S. I usually paddle the Villain S, being that it is a better fitting size for me. Though with the Sickline and Green Race boat limits being 9 feet I will take the extra length and speed of the Villain.
Now after all of our training the biggest thing I had noticed was a better line is always better than just paddling hard and screwing up. With a couple weeks left, I hope to get a couple more training sessions in, though I will start to really focus once we get to the course to start training.
See you on the river,