Tag Archives: oslo

Sean Rice interview part 2 of 2

Time for the final instalment of our exclusive interview with ICF Ocean Racing World Champion Sean Rice.

In part two you’ll get answers to many surfski related questions such as “how do you decide on paddle lenght” and “How come your little brother is so good-looking?” Remember that these are crowdsourced questions! Watch this to find out…

The magnificent video from Mauritius was made by videographer Murray Walters while the video of a cracking wave chaser race from San Francisco is by Dion Maxwell. Look them up on Youtube and Vimeo for full video with audiotrack, it’s worth your time for sure even if you don’t paddle surfskis and if you do then watching these is absolutely mandatory.

A big thank you to everyone who contributed by submitting your questions to one of the very best surfskiers and of course a big thank you to Sean Rice for taking time out of a busy schedule to contribute to the growth of the sport. Now sit back and enjoy what Sean has to tell us.

Sean Rice has answered your questions!

Part 1 of 2 of our exclusive crowdsourced interview with ICF Ocean Racing World Champion Sean Rice now available as audio interview accompanied images from Seans clinics in beautiful Oslo

A few weeks ago Sean Rice gave the readers of surfskipaddling.com the opportunity to learn from one of the very best. The results are two instalments of our exclusive crowdsourced surfski-interview with Sean Rice

A big thank you to everyone who contributed by submitting your questions to one of the very best surfskiers and of course a big thank you to Sean Rice for taking time out of a busy schedule to contribute to the growth of the sport. Now sit back and enjoy what Sean has to tell us.

Sean Rice interview part 1 of 2 from Sune Wendelboe on Vimeo

We received a lot of really good questions. Questions about training, technique, racing, boats and about Sean’s own paddling background, his busy life and how he has climbed very fast to the top of surfskipaddling.

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Sean Rice ready for the interview with Sune Wendelboe of Surfskipaddling.com (right) and host of the clinics in Oslo Einar Kjerchow

In between all the races that Sean has been winning lately he took a “break” flying to Norway to race happy amateaurs, train and give a lot of very popular clinics. Here we caught up with Sean on a sunny early autumn day on the pier of a small Marina in Oslo.

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While boaters, kayakers and youngsters in sailing dinghies were swarming around the pier we did this interview covering a lot of surfski subjects.

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The second instalment of this exclusive crowsourced interview will be featured on this blog next friday October 3rd

Logo Surfskipaddling

Surfski clinic by Sean Rice

To readers of this blog, Sean Rice needs no introduction. Even my 4 and 7 year old sons know who Soren Ris (common Danish name) is. After a very successful trip around the Western US and Canada, Sean had once again set his eyes on Norway where the surfski sport is in    it´s infancy. And these are exiting times as the sport is growing like mad in parts of Scandinavia fuelled by wind, cold water and a very strong kayaking tradition.

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Rather than reiterating the minutes of the clinics Sean did in Oslo, I´ll try to share my own experience. How I benefitted from Sean´s ability to deliver an analytical breakdown of your paddling technique, and follow this up with a very comprehensible workaround for you to take home.

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Sean had visited Norway in May and hosted a handful of successful clinics with extraordinarily positive feedback. Back then I had just returned from a few short days a Dawid & Nikki Mocke´s Paddling School in Fish Hoek South Africa. A truly wonderful experience where focus had been surf zone training and cracking downwind runs. I had begun following an intense training program very kindly tailored by Nikki Mocke, but was painfully aware that my technique was actually bad, very bad.

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My paddling issues
I love the sport, but from time to time I felt uncomfortable in my skis without really being able to tell why. Especially when conditions were flat and no downwind adrenaline could hide my shortcomings. Together with my trusted and skilled physiotherapist I had cracked part of the code and built more core strength. But arriving at a true workaround for better surfskiing was very difficult and the solution always just beyond reach.

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Enter Sean Rice
Sean Rice dropped by Oslo in May this year on invitation from local surfski enthusiasts Einar Kjerschow. Literally two hours later I walked away from Sean´s clinic with a near complete road map to better speed, less physical strain and a much better technique.

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I expected the clinic to be hosted by a professional athlete very knowledgeable about good technique and able to outline the basic steps towards a good forward stroke. But what I and others got in May was much better – an analytical breakdown of our individual so-so paddling style and custom made technical building blocks each of us could utilise to achieve a better paddling style.

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Book a private clinic and Sean will have a better chance to watch you paddling from various angles and will keep quiet – for just a short while. Then he´ll jump in a surfski and paddle alongside you to confirm the theory forming in his mind. Now quiet-time is over and Sean will in clear text lay out what your boat is doing wrong, what you´re doing to cause this, why you´re doing this, what you should do to correct this now and what you should focus on to overcome the problem on a long term. What you should focus on as problematic for your stroke, and what you should just learn to accept as your own personal interpretation of a good forward stroke.

Sean Rice Surf Ski Session at Oslo Kayak Club from Sune Wendelboe on Vimeo.

First step
In my own case my main concern before the clinic in May was a weird stroke, high left stroke, low right stroke, force spent moving air and water in directions no all good for winning any races, very asymmetrical connection between lower and upper body.  The clinic in May and loads of training afterwards took care of a lot of this and speed picked up considerably.

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Second step
But what was worse was that I still couldn´t get rid of this sometimes uncomfortable feeling in my boats. They all felt like they´re were going just a bit left, bucket felt like it was just a bit asymmetrically built, pedals felt like my legs weren´t equally long while indeed they are. All these little things seemed like different issues until this Monday´s clinic in Oslo when Sean´s analysis tore them apart and reconnected them into one manageable solution addressing a domino effect caused by weaker left side protecting itself and a stronger right side opening up to applying full power. Pretty simple really, but to the untrained eye these things are disguised by loads of compensating paddling moves, leaving you stuck with a mediocre stroke and risk of injuries.

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Again I walked away from a new Sean Rice clinic with an big piece of a new roadmap. This time a roadmap to much more enjoyable paddling.

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Being on a fluid surface with so many variables few people will be able to self diagnose the underlying reason to their seemingly unconnected paddling issues. With access to raw talent like Sean Rice’s, surfskiing is indeed a special sport where you can actually learn from the best!

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In a few good days in Norway Sean hosted clinics for beginners, intermediate and experienced paddlers. Theory and practical sessions covering basic technique and the art of reading and using waves. Feed back from the participants has once again been outstanding.

If you ever get the chance I really really recommend that you join a clinic with Sean Rice who in addition to being one of the absolutely leading surfskiers is now using his fine-tuned analytical powers to help paddlers enjoy their sport even more.

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Third step
While Sean has left Norway to race in the Ohana Mana Surfski Race (good luck), we´re now so amped in Norway that we´re busy preplanning a longer Norwegian / Swedish / Danish(?) surfski camp next spring. Stay tuned for program later this year.

Don´t forget the exclusive crowdsourced Sean Rice interview that will be featured on surfskipaddling.com next Friday!