By: Dwayne Parton

Learning to Hip Snap

Bill met me down at the Finger Lake one evening to see how the boat fit me. When I showed him my “roll”, he decided he’d better teach me how to properly do it. He pulled me to the side and in about 4ft of water and told me to grab his hands roll and roll the boat over on to myself. This was how I learned and felt what it meant to Hip Snap, and that’s the very first thing to practice before you learn to roll. Since I have learned a few different ways to practice this, and has once again proven to be an invaluable resource.

The Bow of Another Boat: Grabbing the bow of another persons boat with both hands, let you ear that it closest to the water rest on your hands. Roll the boat over onto your body, and back up right leaving your ear in the water. This is the same technique used when a T or Bow Rescue is performed.

The Hands of A Friend: You can also do this with a friend using there hands to act like the same as the bow. Get in about 4 feet of water. Place both your hands in your friends hands and finish the same exact way as the previous method, making sure to get a full hip snap, and leaving your ear in the water.

Paddle Float or Air Bag: A method that I really like to use, is having air bag or paddle float. You can adjust the amount of air in the bag to allow you to focus solely on using your hips. If the bag has very little air it will sink if you raise your head before your hip snaps are complete. This motion is the exact motion of a hand roll, and the basis for all rolls. Practice snapping your hips every time you get on the water until your roll is 100%. One thing I really like about this is that you can do full rolls with the bag. This will help you get comfortable underwater, and help you figure out how to get into the setup position for which ever roll you learn.