Kayak roll

A kayak roll (often referred to as an Eskimo roll) is the act of righting a capsized kayak by use of body motion and/or a paddle. Typically this is done by lifting the torso towards the surface, flicking the hips to right the kayak, and applying a small force by means of the paddle to assist the torso back over the boat.

The roll is an essential for paddlers who attempt serious whitewater (Class IV or greater), as exiting the boat and swimming gives the paddler less maneuverability and control, and thus leaves them more exposed than in the boat.

A kayak-mounted video of a roll in a pool

A kayaker surfaces at the end of a roll on whitewater

Kayaker coming up from a roll on flat water

The skill of righting a capsized kayak was devised by the hunter-gatherer societies that also developed the kayak as a hunting boat; the Aleut and Inuit people. The Greenland Inuit used several techniques that allowed the kayak to be righted with or without a paddle, also using only one hand, or without hands at all. A survey in Greenland in 1911 found that of a total of 2,228 hunters with a kayak of their own, 867 were able to roll.

This page was last edited on 25 May 2018, at 09:48 (UTC).
Reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eskimo_roll under CC BY-SA license.

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