catching bumps?

When trying to catch a bump when do you increase/decrease your stroke rate and apply more/reduce pressure to catch and stay on a bump?

Submitted by ondakanu on Fri, 04/22/2005 - 8:31am

umm--- i was hoping someone else would answer, but....
you just have to feel it, you'll be going, you'll feel a swell pass and then you'll feel your nose dip--
theres a little release point right as you start to head down hill, and you want to jam for ideally less than 5 strokes and then you'll be on and hopefully can rest for a little. But you really have to go by feel, i think thats why nobody answered because you can't say exactly when to go--- just get out there enough and you'll learn when and will be able to do it on instinct...
someone with more experience can probably answer better

#1 Wed, 04/27/2005 - 11:10am

Lukes right about the feel of it. That's why when I first read this post, I couldn't find the words to put down. The "feel" is gonna take some saddle time. Till you get the feel, try some of these techniques.

If it's a big and windy day, don't bother too much on those big sets. No matter how steep and big it looks, they're "almost" always impossible to catch. (Unless it breaks or windy enough for the peak to crumble) Instead stick to the smaller bumbs. They're not moving as fast which makes it easier to catch and connect when they line up right. And boy is it sweet when you hook them up. Another suggestion would be to find the "deep". The "deep' is when two waves approach you and the first one passes your rig. If the second wave is close enough, it'll suck out the water from "behind" the the first wave making the second wave an almost automatic hook-up. It will look steep and deep right in front of you..... hence the word "deep". So next time you're out in the ocean in some bumps, keep an eye out for the "deep". Everything else will be vision and feel.

There's alot more to learn from the pros, but these are the basics I use when I'm out dancing in the chop. Good luck and have fun.............that's why we do it!

#2 Wed, 04/27/2005 - 12:05pm

Just watch the Kauai Boys "Sunshine" video clip! You know what might help too? Playing Keizo's paddling video game! That game is really similar to when you supposed to "grab". Other than that, regular surfing on a surfboard helps your canoe surfing ability also. It helps you see the bumps forming. Different people catch bumps differently, you just have to see it and feel it.

#3 Wed, 04/27/2005 - 4:01pm

ALOEK is right on this one...just plain spending time in the ocean with waves gives you a feel for how to catch them.

Paddleboarding is a great way to get this too. Especially since you don't have the surface area of a paddle or the extremely sleek hull of a canoe, you have to be really careful what waves you "spend" your energy catching. But when you string em together, it's the best.

I guess my advice is be selective. If you go out there and spin your wheels going after everything that comes along, you'll (for lack of a better term) "blow your load".

#4 Wed, 04/27/2005 - 9:10pm

Thanks for the response. I was thinking no one wanted to give away their secrets j/k. But then I figured it was a difficult topic to describe in text.

I definitely need more time in the bumps and learning to feel what the ocean is doing. But one thing that I find myself doing is cranking really hard just as the bump is about to pass me and lifts the nose of my canoe. As the nose shifts from an upward angle, to horizontal then downward, I start to increase the stroke rate. It almost feels like something was attached to the canoe for resistance and all of the sudden it let go. do others do this and feel this?

#5 Thu, 04/28/2005 - 6:55am

This discussion should be moved over to the STDs thread......j/k.

I find it a lot easier to set the boat up to catch a swell after the first swell passes since the first swell is usually followed by a series of other bump and because the first swell is not usually preceded by any signs in advance of its approach. By the time you realize that you're on the first of a series of bumps, your nose is usually pointing down which means you need to paddle like hell just to get the boat up to speed to capitalize on the wave. I find the second and third sets a lot easier to catch because I know they're following right behind the first. In these instances, I start my push as boat sits back on the backside of the wave, with its nose pointing toward the peak of the first wave as it passes under the boat. By the time the second wave hits, I'm already moving fast enough or in a position to bring the boat up to speed sufficient to capitalize on the second wave.

I do know that different boats have different abilities to capitalize on bumps as they approach and as they pass under you. My experience is only limited to the Hurricane and Vantage so I can't speak of any others. For me, I notice that if I'm on my Hurricane and a wave has already passed me (whether its the first, second, third, etc.), I can't get on it. The Vantage, however, allows me to catch waves even after they've passed under me by climbing up the back side and over the peak of the wave. Its sort of like running up a hill, then sliding down it.

#6 Fri, 04/29/2005 - 9:08am

If you want to cut short the learning curve on surfing, try to do a surfing run with someone who really knows how to surf, using a two-man canoe. Let the experienced person sit up front (steering) while you follow from seat two. Surfing is all about wave selection, boat positioning, and angles. Moving from one wave to another (linking waves or jumping waves) while keeping your nose down is what it's all about. You can learn this with a lot of time in the saddle, or quickly by sitting behind someone who knows what to look for so you can "see what they see" then "do what they do." It will teach you quickly when to press and when to back off, how to use smaller waves to catch the faster/bigger waves, and how to use the "seams" between waves to link rides while keeping your nose down. Good luck.

#7 Fri, 04/29/2005 - 3:16pm

This is some good information. Yesterday was the first time I went out with a pretty consistent set of bumps. Now when I read this thread it makes more sense . I was lucky to go with some guys who know what they're doing. The guys I went with are really good and left me behind. They went out further into what looked like the same sized bumps to me. Later they told me the bumps were a lot better out there. I watched my friend fly his ama as he surfed. He would go far with it flying! I tried it and flipped twice. The rest of the way I left my ama down... I felt like shark food swimming around in blue water.... :shock:
So much to learn. The winds are smokin right now at 6:30am and I feel like going again right now! Tomorrow the winds are picking up even more! We'll be on it for sure.

Here's my beginner point of view for other beginners.... Go with good guys who know how to surf the bumps well and listen to what they tell you. Like dmehling wrote, watch when they press and back off. Although, you may only get to watch this for a little while before they blow your ass away!!!! Follow their lines. I didn't do this yesterday and found out it was better where they went... I watched them walk away from me and I was paddling my butt off! They were surfing while I paddled. Pay attention to what happened and how you pressed into the good ones you catch and how it set up for you and do it again. Towards the end of the run I was able to connect a few long ones and a lot more short ones. All I could think was how much easier and faster the whole run would of been if I knew what the hell I was doing! Haha! Well, the winds are up and all you Hawaii paddlers are probably bumping your brains out. Have fun!

#8 Thu, 06/09/2005 - 6:46am

2 really nice days with plenty bumps later and the "FEEL" is coming. Still don't have it wired but did have some really long rides and was able to connect bumps together here and there intentionally. Haha! I see the difference in the fun level when the winds are good compared to slow days. Its all good though.....

#9 Tue, 06/14/2005 - 7:17am

If it's okay to give a plug to another site, try checking out and go to the Health and Fitness link and then to the Tips link on the bottom of the page. You'll see tips from the top paddlers in the state on how to catch bumps and also training strategies.

#10 Thu, 06/16/2005 - 10:33pm

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