- sit still
- sink a rail, nose, tail
- move forward and backward
- move right or left
- spin clockwise or counterclockwise
What's really important here is how we link these actions together using our weight transfers and paddle strokes while at the same time, we have to also be aware of how the water and wind conditions impact these actions. Let's say I'm on a downwind run and I see few little bumps right ahead of me. I increase my cadence to catch up to the bump using short, rapid strokes. I shuffle my feet forward to put a little more weight on the front of the board and I feel the board accelerate down the face of the bump, now my weight is too far forward and nose starts to pearl, I have to quickly get weight off the nose and back on the tail so I take a big step back with my right foot and stop paddling. I now have good trim on the bump and I drag my paddle for stability and to help me turn the board a bit. By now, the bump is starting to pass me by so I move forward again in hopes of catching the bump that was right behind that one. All of this happens rather quickly but if I pay attention and I'm not too winded, perhaps I can link two or three of these bumps together for a long and really fun ride!
To catch these bumps, I just sink the nose a bit, make the board go forward quickly using short rapid-fire strokes, then put some weight on the tail to ride the bump. That's it, and if I can do this a few times during a run, I am smiling and laughing like a little kid. I'm smiling now just thinking about it.
Hat tip to the ACA and Robin Pope for this great article about teaching tips for kayaking. Take the time to read the whole article here.