OC6 Seating Responsibilities

We all know, in being part of an OC6 team, each seating position in the canoe requires spacific skills. To be a successful, (winning) OC6 team requires 6 individuals utilizing these skills working towards a common goal. I think it's safe to say we've all been part of a 6 man team where everyone is performing at their best and the canoe glides effortlessly through the water. I know, we've all experienced a time when just one person in the canoe wasn't paddleing as well as they should and how it effected the whole canoe.

So, let me ask, what seat positions are everone's favorite and what skills do you think are required for that position?

I always liked seats 1 and 2. I like being up front setting the pace. Also, those seats are the farest away from the steersman in seat 6 and if the coach is steering, you aren't setting close to him while he cusses and bangs on the side of the canoe because someone's timing is off.

Submitted by OC1 Driver on Thu, 06/10/2010 - 7:28am

In the OCP Mafia, every seat has the same three responsibilities.
- Paddle like hell.
- Don't f#%k up.
- Have more fun than anyone else out there.

#1 Thu, 06/10/2010 - 9:09am

I like every seat... The real question is In wich seat do the other guys want me to be... or not ?

#2 Thu, 06/10/2010 - 9:34am

Learn to sit in every seat so you can respect what the other 5 are doing while you are doing your best to make the canoe glide. I'm usually in 3 or 4 because I'm tall, but I like 2 and 6 when I get the opportunity. The legroom in 1 is a little too cramped for me, and 5 can be fun when surfing bumps, but then what seat isn't fun when surfing?
I'm always surprised when someone tries a new seat and comments about how different it is than what they're used to.

#3 Thu, 06/10/2010 - 1:12pm

I like to steer but my friends don't like me to steer ! They believe I take a line 10% longer ;-)
I like seat 1 but the steerer says I'm way too heavy ! (202lbs)
So I end up in seat 3 when paddling V6, and I have fun with my V1... wher I can stroke, steer and no one tells me what I do wrong !

#4 Thu, 06/10/2010 - 2:36pm

If you were to give a name to each position what would they be. We have got Stroke and Steerer. But what you reckon throughout the rest. I've heard 'engine room' for the middle. but that is just to make the big kids feel good.

Give me stroke any day. Not sure if the rest of my crew think the same.

#5 Thu, 06/10/2010 - 2:45pm

Got to agree with Novice B, learn to sit every seat. Roll seats every so often at practice and make those that don't want to steer at least learn the basics (they're less likely to bitch so much after that..). Same with stroking; timing and rythmn come so much easier with the 'clock in your head'. I'm trying to get my #1s and #6s to be better at va'a also as correctional strokes with power can be better than just poking all the time.
In big water I love a #5 that is decisive and strong and knows what I want to drop in on a bump....but hey, they're all good with a fun crew,

#6 Thu, 06/10/2010 - 3:28pm

I think the seat one two combination is critical. When this combination is smooth, everything else falls into place much more nicely.

#7 Thu, 06/10/2010 - 8:10pm

I love setting in seat one. But, not being a surfer prior to paddling, I think I lacked the skills to read the swells and make the correct adjustments my stroke.

#8 Tue, 06/15/2010 - 9:53am

Any seat I can get in a good boat with good people!

#9 Tue, 06/15/2010 - 4:25pm

seat 5 has to work with seat 6. Can gain alot of canoe speed when 5 and 6 work together. In surf seat 5 has to work like a steerer but without having to steer. Its prob my fav seat when not in 6.

#10 Tue, 06/15/2010 - 10:58pm

Same as Goto plus 1

  • Paddle like hell.
  • Don’t f#%k up.
  • Have more fun than anyone else out there.

-wave your paddle high in the air while dropping in on bumps.

#11 Wed, 06/16/2010 - 9:31am

Oh yeah, ditto again w/meanDNA..it seems to me that on my crews in open ocean or big water I love a solid, strong, experienced paddler in #5. Have to get out of the mindset that the newest, most out of time or weakest paddler gets stuck in #5...in big water or racing hard me and my favorite at #5 don't even have to talk; he knows when to power, when to kahi, when to stick the ama back in the water with his butt..it's a gas.
Isn't it always fun..?

#12 Wed, 06/16/2010 - 10:47am

just a guess,,, at best

first seat set's the pace, would be someone with great timing quick reactions and at a moments notice can react. if need to . but most of all puts the crew before himself.

second seat is in sink with the first seat, it would be good if they were identical twins. and also if he could help out with the ama if it pops.

third seat is the best seat to sit in and for very hansom men.

fourth seat is in the engine room and has to be a big guy and helps if the ama pops. also has bailing responsibilities

fifth is as said before also in the engine room and second to the skip. takes part in calling switches. as first seat can ,at a moments notice react and help with steering.

As Nappy told me (be a skipper, there your see everything.) the skip is the boss, and has final say in everything. can read the stars, the ocean, and talk to the wind

#13 Wed, 06/16/2010 - 1:35pm

I'd say seat one has got to have good feel for boat run. When to pick up pace both on flat and while surfing. Good feel for how the crew is going behind him and if they have some big backs or newer paddlers that need a clip.
Seat two has to have a good sync otherwise the whole canoe is out. So good match of rhythm to stroke. Good backing up of stroke. encouragement etc.
I've heard that different teams have different seats calling. I think 3 is good for most conditions. App 2 has been used for catching bumps. I quite like when 5 is calling and pushing the crew along. Inline with what Mean DnA had to say.
For change races we normally have both 3 & 4 calling depending on who is getting out etc.
Seat four and five get to bail with us. Five if it is a change race. I like what has been said about having five back up steerer. makes good sense.
And then Seat six. who gives a shit what they have to say. they always go the wrong way. ha. Na vital to have a good one, or two.

#14 Wed, 06/16/2010 - 3:13pm

If there's a choice, it's usually Seat-5. My fortune was getting thrown in that seat as a new guy, and learned just how complex and cool it could be...I had to learn to steer, and to be keeper of the ama, and to pull like a dog with 3 & 4, yet know when to help 6 without direction. I liked that nobody wanted that seat because of the stigma that ignorant clubs give it. All the better for me....With a good 6 that likes to work with a 5 (some 6's don't realize the symbiotic effect a conscientious 5 can bring), big water becomes really fun. As the last primary paddler, you also have role of tying in the sync. Sometimes when a boat loses the sync, a good 5 can sort of fix it by adding to the better timed group, which isn't always on the same side. But all seats have their unique features...

#15 Wed, 06/16/2010 - 4:56pm

I jus recently got back into paddling after a long hiatus and have to say that seat 5 is perfect now. When I was paddling regularly I was always in 2 or 6. Now I can help out 6 and power away like 3&4.

#16 Thu, 06/17/2010 - 10:04am

good talk about seat five. You can feel when 5 knows whats up, he can be the difference maker when dropping in or not dropping in, a little push with the leg drive, float the ama, stabilize, boom.

#17 Thu, 06/17/2010 - 2:30pm

its important for everyone in the crew to know eachother. just as each seat is unique in its own way, every person is too. the problem is, everyone is in the same boat reacting to the elements of paddling differently. on the weekends or when your not paddling, invite your crew for a bbq, or share a couple beers with um to bond even tighter as a team.

#18 Thu, 06/17/2010 - 3:17pm

You just summed up the essence of team canoe paddling, j billz.

#19 Thu, 06/17/2010 - 6:14pm

Vote +1 for j billz

#20 Thu, 06/17/2010 - 9:48pm

j billz nailed it, paddling is great, but it's a team effort, everyone brings something different to the canoe. But, a big part is team bonding over a few beers, cook outs and other post paddling activities. I always felt bad if my stroke was off, or I was not phyisically ready for a race. I just hated letting the rest of the crew down by not being at my best.

#21 Fri, 06/18/2010 - 6:45am

this is why the Mafia had such a good race.

to put it simply... we're family.

#22 Fri, 06/18/2010 - 9:23am

my timing is usually off when i sit 1

#23 Fri, 06/18/2010 - 3:19pm

Seat 1 : paddle so fast that noone will keep up or so slow everybody fall asleep / scream he can't hear the "Hut"
Seat 2 : tell seat one that his timing sucks / try to impose his own stroke rate to 3-4-5-6
Seat 3 : call "hut" whenever he thinks it will slow the canoe / tell seat 1-2 their timing sucks / ask who is steering
Seat 4 : wait forever before bailing / loudly say once in a while how the rest of the team sucks
Seat 5 : steer the canoe as if seat 6 was not there / rest
Seat 6 : poke / poke / poke / poke / try to hit other canoes

#24 Fri, 06/18/2010 - 6:17pm

Very good Hiro, I reckon I have heard all of those, haha.

#25 Fri, 06/18/2010 - 9:03pm

Ow, geez ... Hiro :
being so far away one from each other, how come you know me and my team so well ?
hahaha !

#26 Mon, 06/21/2010 - 10:36pm

"or share a couple beers"
Having my roots deep in the southwest of France, I was wondering if the "beer bind" could be swapped to "sangria bind".
Anyhow, BBQ is OK, we're basically surfing the same cultural wave ;-)

#27 Tue, 06/22/2010 - 1:55am

yea j billies, once were both old enough we should drink choke beers

#28 Wed, 06/30/2010 - 12:39am

Hiro that was hilarious! Everyone in the office was looking at me because I was laughing so hard. Well done sir

#29 Wed, 06/30/2010 - 9:51am

personally, when i started paddling it always seemed like we put the 'weaker' or 'newer' paddler in seat 5. but as a steersman, i'd rather have a better, more experienced paddler in front of me, that way in case something happens, the steersman can rely on 5 to help steer from his/her seat.

#30 Wed, 06/30/2010 - 10:01am

Pokamura, I totally agree with you.
The first place is definitelly not a beginner's one. Maybe the most difficult : You have to feel what you can't see from the crew. You're responsible for the pace (obviously) but also the quality of the paddling.
In 2nd you need to be as good as 1st, plus an incredible capacity to forget your ego and stick to 1st paddling style and pace.
In 3d and 4th you need strong reliable people.
In 6th not actually the strongest, but definitely the finest. the technical freak, the paddling strokes geek.
In 5th a good overall one, probably also a good steerer. At least knowing when to help # 6.

Well, not so much space left for the beginners. :-D

#31 Thu, 08/12/2010 - 10:56pm

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