Monday, December 31, 2007

Is it....

ski season yet?

Rykert's Snowman 3 12-30-07

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Once more...

I bring you, my loyal reader(s), a double dip from the skiing and holiday goodie jar-also known as YouTube- sprinkled with chocolatey commentary.
Here is the world record that never was, according to IWSF. Oops, someone forgot to take centerline video.

These are simple views of Jamie's unofficial record pass. While not perfect shots, they do capture the accelleration and angle required to slalom into 43'off
41' off

43' off

Here is another view of Jamie's record. I think this is an example of the "less is more" mantra when it comes to fancy camera work in water skiing. Maybe I am a crumudegon, but the simple shot in the first two videos makes the skiing lok all the more impressive. in the Last video, all the zooming in and slomo seems like Mr. Camerman is trying too hard to make Jamie look cool, you know, for the kids. The vid makes Jamie look like he is trying harder to 'strike a pose'
than break a formidable world record. Leave the posing to the male models.

Our sport does not need anthing that gimmiky (did I hear cheesy)? That reminds me, I need to perfect my post(stand up)-toe pass hair flip this winter.

Note: I am not criticising Jamie's not-so-subtle plugs to his sponsors in the post-pass interview. The man has bills to pay.
Note: Three videos do not constitute a triple-dip into the goodie jar. I consider the first two to be one video in two parts.

As promised, a Holiday gem on this most sacred of days for the rest of us.


Saturday, December 15, 2007

A couple of...

Christmas goodies for (both of) my loyal readers.

First, this is the best perspective shot of jumping i've ever seen. This clip gives a near-perfect view of how wide, and how fast, and how far a big jump really is.


Second, nothing quite captures the spirit of the season like this clip from SNL, circa 2001.

Crikey. I will have mad respect, forever, for Hugh Jackman.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Reason # 334,435,748,135,111...

why winter sucks ass

Tow truck to the rescue.

Tree on car.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

This post has nothing to do...

with water-skiing. As it is the off-season, I believe I have creative lecense to stray off-topic for a post or two.
This post is related to something for which I am almost as passionate as I am about water-skiing: my raging, burning, seething, gnashing, grating hatred of the evil, evil, BCS. My wife and I collaberated on a manifesto concerning said plague on soceity, so here goes. Libby (my aforementioned wife)is also posting it on her blog, knit tidbits

So, it is with great despair that we discuss a topic for which we are passionate: the ridiculous BCS "System" . It is, without a doubt, the most ridiculous thing. Ever. Libby and I have a solution (that has also been proposed by others) - a NCAA Basketball play-off type system which would incorporate the bowls, even the playing the field, and allow the big sponsors (Allstate, Tostinos, etc) to still make their millions.

Why, you may ask, am I passionate about this? Well, Libby went to school at one of the little guys, a non-BCS Conference school with a fledgling Division I football team. You see, each of the six BCS conferences (ACC, Big 10, Big 12, SEC, Pac 10, and Big East) are guaranteed a spot in one of the BCS bowls. One automatic berth is given to the highest ranked champion of a non-BCS Conference IF (and only if) (1) it is ranked in the top 12 or (2) ranked in the top 16 and higher than one of the BCS Conference champions. This is crazy, right? So, with the Conference Champions of the top six conferences taking up 6 of the 10 spots there's little room for the rest.

My sophomore year, 1998, Libby's Greenies actually achieved the seemingly impossible, and went undefeated. (Insert your arguments about the lack of competiveness of Conference USA here.) Yet, despite their extraordinary season, the 1998 Green Wave was given no access to a major bowl game (and the national exposure that would come with it) or the National Championship. If you play your season, and you win out, then you should have equal opprtunity to play for all of the marbles. See Boise State last year or Hawaii this year. The current system relies on computers and polls, preseason rankings and "strength of schedule" to determine the top two teams. There is never a clear and undisputed National Champion. The year of Tulane's perfect season there was only one other undefeated team, University of Tennessee. Their opponent, Florida State, was beaten once in the regular season. Tennessee ended up winning the Mythical National Championship. And Tulane's Tommy Bowden, left for the greener pastures of Clemson where he would actually have the opportunity to play for a national championship under the current system. While recent "tweaks" to the BCS have marginally increased the odds of a Non-BCS school being included in a BCS bowl (Utah 2004, Boise State 2006, Hawai'i 2007), no non-BCS school has ever competed for the National Champoinship under the current system, even when being one of only 1 or 2 undefeated teams in the country. The current system practically assures that this will continue into perpetuity.

This year has been very competitive as far as college football games with lots of flipping around in the polls (for whatever that is worth), overtime games, and general parity among teams. No clear number 1 has emerged and clearly dominated its opponents. LSU suffered two losses by unranked opponents; Ohio State got beat by Illinois who even Iowa, having a rebuilding year, managed to beat. I'm somehow unsurprised that the coordinator of the BCS is also the head of the SEC, representing what I would call a significant conflict of interest. I mean even Tulane played with LSU for 3 quarters of a game. The score on the LSU/ Tulane game was farther apart than the actual game. A Number 1 or 2 team should have dominated Tulane this season.

The BCS System is, at best, a corrupt and ridiculous system. It is, at worst, completely anti-competitive and a violation of Anti-Trust laws. Why does it matter? Well, it matters because if you are a little guy in a non-BCS conference like Tulane, the only chance you have to capitalize on an extraordinary season is to get the exposure and monetary compensation (yes schools make money for playing in bowl games the teams that play in the BCS shared like $150+ million last year) that comes with playing in a BCS game - it's imperative for recruiting and sustainability. Yet, those schools do not have equal access to compete in those games.

My distate for the system boiled over in 2004 when my beloved Auburn Tigers were aced out of a shot at the Mythical National Championship, though undefeated, by USC and Oklahoma. That year, Auburn defeated a top-25 team in Tennessee to win the SEC championship, while Oklahoma beat un unranked Colorado Team in The Big 12 championship game. Clearly undermanned, USC trounced Oklahoma 55-19 in the B(silent C)S championship game. Auburn defeated a top-10 Virginia Tech in the Sugar Bowl 16-13. By the way, non-BCS Utah finished that season undefeated as well.

The problem is the system, and it is not the fault of the teams that were chosen. Schools, coaches, players, pundits, and fans should be outraged at the system as it now exists. I'm completely shocked by the mainstream football commentators who attempt to justify the system. It is inherently subjective and unfair. A play-off style system would alleviate controversy and name a single, undisputed national champion. I have never heard anyone make a convincing argument as to why there cannot be a play-off system and why the BCS System, as it currently exists, is satisfactory. The justifications for the Iraq war make more sense than those put forth about the BCS. That's a sad state of affairs. I.e., there is a better chance for the president to find Iraqi WMD under the couch in the oval office than ther is to find a pro-BCS argument that can hold up after even a half-assed attempt logical scrutiny.
If you look at other Division IA collegiate sports (Baseball and Basketball, for example), all teams are able to compete regardless of size and the classification of their conference. So a Tulane can make it to the Baseball World Series or the Final Four and play with the Tennessee's and the LSUs and the Ohio States.

One more thing, if you are going to try to argue about the "traditions" of the bowls, please spare me. The whole bowl system has gotten unbelievably ridiculous. I mean, do you remember with great nostalgia the the " Bowl" or the "AutoZone Liberty Bowl" or the "Pacific Life Holiday Bowl" or the "New Mexico Bowl," which features, big surprise, the University of New Mexico, of old. We are just a season away from the Tampax Bowl. Seriously. Our all-time favorites: the Continental Tire Bowl and the Poulan Weed-Eater Independence Bowl

So here is what we suggest. Each of the 11 Division IA conferences will name a winner who will receive an automatic berth to the play-off for the National Championship. If you can't win your conference, then clearly you may not be the best team in the nation. If you aren't in a conference (I'm talking about you Notre Dame), then get over yourself and join up, or be at the mercy of the at-large selection process. No automatic bid for a single school based on record/rankings. There would be a few at-large berths to accomodate situations where a single conference is particularly competitive and to fill out the bracket. The Conference Champions and few at-large teams are then seeded and placed into a single elimination bracket culminating in a single National Championship Game. The semifinals, etc. can still be bowl games - The Fiesta Bowl Quarterfinal, etc. If corporate sponsors want to sponsor low-stakes, ridiculous bowl games ( i.e. the Tampax Bowl), then they can do so with the remaining teams. Bowl sponsors could still make their money, and fans/alumni would see more than one meaningful bowl game and several consolation games.

And now we bust some of the weak arguments that will be thrown against our plan:
(1) Don't fix what isn't broken; the current system works. You're kidding me with this one, right? The current system does not work. The current system creates a tiered system where the haves ( i.e. BCS Conference schools) are given advantages over the have nots (the non-BCS Conference Schools) without any regard for performance on the field. Tulane, Marshall, and BYU have all posted perfect records since 1998 and have been locked out of high-payout BCS games. Utah, Boise State, and Hawai'i, while allowed token appearances in BCS bowls following undefeated regular seasons, have been consistently left out of any serious consideration for playing in the championship game. The current system does not work. There has never been a better example than this year, where a clear-cut #1 and #2 simply do not exist.

(2) The Regular Season Won't Count Anymore. Again, are you serious? Unlike college basketball where a team plays 30+ regular season games, football teams play 12-13 games. These games will mean just as much because you will have to win your conference and you can't do that by just lazing about all fall. Further, 5 at-large bids will be necessary if a conference is particularly competitive with two amazing teams. Conference games will be just as meaningful, if not more so, than before, thanks to automatic bids. Conference championship games would hold even greater stakes. Top tier teams would also have more incentive to schedule top-tier nonconference opponents, as a win over a quality opponent could separate teams with identical records when vying for an at-large berth. Instead of first week tune-ups, fans could see intriguing matchups in early-season games.

As it exists now the, Schools with "traditions" i.e. major conference schools, are at an advantage to create a softer schedule (weak nonconference opponents), causing a glut of yawner blowouts throughout the course of a season. People say the regular season is like a playoff now. Wrong, Wrong, Wrong. It may indeed be like a playoff, but that is only for teams that are undefeated, so one loss means you are "eliminated." To quote ESPN's Lee Corso, "Not so fast." LSU lost twice this year. Twice-beaten (though they did not even win their division, much less their conference) Georgia was a possibility to play in the championship game until the very end, as was 2-loss Oklahoma. Ohio State lost to its only truly tough opponent (Illinois) and backed into the BCS championship by NOT PLAYING. And does anyone in Honolulu think the regular season is like a playoff? My guess is no. Where is the do or die in this scenario?

Currently, the regular season is like a playoff for a decreasing number of teams week-to-week, provided a perfect set of circumstances. In a 16 team playoff, the stakes would be raised for more teams throughout the course of the season. Teams that might have lost a shot at their conference champoinship would have everything to play for, as they still must seek an at-large berth. Instead of a decresing number of games with championship implications, as exists now, an increasing number of games would have playoff implications.

(3) A play-off would ruin the tradition of the bowl games. Late-round games can be played at major bowl sites. Also, tradition is overrated (See list of nostalgic bowls above). The tradition is gone for a handful of meaningless games. Whoopity-doo. Libby rests here case.

(4) The Season would last too long. It lasts later and later every year as it is. Division IAA does this and it is successful. It would be, at most, an extra couple of weeks. Nobody would be complaining, because it is down time now between the regular season and the bowl games.

So there it is, our anti-BCS manifesto. Do I have any football fans among my readers who have an opinion on this?

Here is a link to a good article about a 16-team playoff system that allows ALL teams a fair chance to play for all the marbles.
The Wetzel Plan

Wednesday, December 05, 2007


fun with MS Paint

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

It's time to stop...

letting sleeping dogs lie. It's time to get off my ass (or is that 'back on my ass') and start blogging again.

BTW, that is lakerykert (and the Waterhawk three-event team)'s new mascot, Nola

Monday, June 11, 2007

skier's canned lament:

THis afternoon, I'm meeting Rick rick preturn 1
at the Lake windy day to get 2-3 set of slalom today. Winds are supposed to be 10-20 MPH. I have not taken one slalom practice set in calm water this year. Sooner or later, the lake has to look like this DSCN1579

It has to get calm eventually, right?

Thursday, June 07, 2007

I thought I was...

Jumping Pretty well so far this year. But my flight position is downright crappy, not to mention inefficient. Observe

jump analysis

The pink lines are perpendicular to the surface of the water and my direction of travel. The yellow lines represent ideal position. I've outlined my body segment and ski angles in blue.

Bacically, I am hitting the ramp on my heels, and my hips are getting behind my toes

Monday, June 04, 2007

It's the most wonderful...

time of the year, so the oft-parodied Christmas song goes. Bite me, Burl Ives, give me tournament season anyday.

Enjoy the following words and pictures.
(That tagline was so understated that it was pompus--like my blogging is too profound to be hyped. Don't you hate it when people do that. Oh, wait,I just did)

Driving the pick-up boat at Waterhawk tournaments is normally a way to become bored and sunburned at the same time. Unless, you spend you time trying to manuver that rustbucket into position for photos.

lindhorst ball view
Amy, shot while foating in line with the 2-ball and the boat guides. I think this was 34mph/15off

I was trying to get Todd right as he came through the entrance gates.
todd n misses
He missed #1 and I missed my picture spot.

It just so happenned thatI was able to get a bunch of Jump pics. Dan Shuman took several of these when he was safety swimmer while I was driving the pickup boat.

Speaking of Dan, here's a shot.
dan shuman
Todd, Bitchin' flame decals on the hat.

This is Dan's Trophy shot: Brian Reed (or reedski as he is known to passing motorists and lurkers on the message board)halfway up the ramp. It took several shots to get this one.
reedski 4
This is damn tricky to shoot when your camera has a 1-2 second shutter delay.

How about some good Leah, bad Leah?

Good Leah: leah counter
Nice balanced position on the counter cut.

Bad Leah:
leah crush
How the hell did she not go OTF?

Keep your chest up!!!

Here is another instance of an RN advising a first year medical resident:
The finger is me telling Marie to edge all the way through the ramp, in that direction.
janice's advice

I got a few more Pics on my Flickr page But that's all I've got for now.

There are two surefire...

signs of tournament season

1. You see skiers giving a little extra TLC to their equipment

reedski 1

2. The PJD
porta potti

More to come later

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Well, I've moved in...

Ok, not completely. But I now have a little time for aimless blogging.

I've still managed to ski during hiatus #2, just no time to blog about it. Something's gotta give.

Here are a few gratuitous photos:

Rick, the other unofficial Waterhawks buoy technician

That blur is Christy

Our ski club has a few new members this year

This blur is Danielle, She skis for the U. of Iowa, the only college team that can field a full women's team, but can't find enough men to do anything but wakeboard. Also, the school where yours truly is the unofficial coach

This is Mike, he skis with Iowa State, but is living and working in the Waterloo area this summer

Yeah, Yeah, Yeah, I know my photography skills need work. Please send me a new digital camera and I will be well on my way to better action shots.

Here's a quick blast from the past. In College, I was not much of a jumper. To celebrate this unfortunate truth, I decided to end my collegiate jumping career--a string of rodeo-style 40-footers and a few obscene gestures with the rope while skiing down the lake-- by going over the ramp in a suit and tie.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

My excuse...

for a dearth of content:

I'm moving.

My computer time has been taken up by packing my shi,er,stuff, into boxes

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


this shit has got to stop. Even murphy's law couldn't help the weather (see previous post.)up here.

weather map

april showers 2

april showers 1

A picture is worth a thousand(or more)expletives.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

I will be personally...

responsible for pulling the Midwest out of this cold snap. How, you ask? Simply by being sidelined with engine trouble. Accessto a temporarily-out-of-comission boat is the best way to guarantee perfect skiing conditions

This is from

Murphy's Law
–noun the facetious proposition that if something can go wrong, it will.

Also called Murphy's First Law.


[Origin: Americanism; after a fictitious Murphy, allegedly the name of a bungling mechanic in U.S. Navy educational cartoons of the 1950s] Unabridged (v 1.1)
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2006.

Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2006.

Got Frost Plugs?
frost plugs

Seriously, got any? The venerable (i.e. POS) Moomba popped one yesterday, , thwarting my moment of defiance to to the recent midwest chill.

Enjoy the impending 80s with sunshine folks.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

misery loves company....

but skiers hate cold weather in the spring. Lady April has flogged the wet-set with straps of ice, cold and snow. Here's a sampling of angst from a thread I started on

Registered User
Posts: 115
(4/5/07 11:28 am)
Reply midwest "spring" sucks
anybody else in the midwest feel like they are geting the shaft from mother nature? I got out to the lake twice before april 1st, and now the weather is in the twenties.

Registered User
Posts: 109
(4/5/07 11:31 am)
Reply SO
This year we had the latest lake freeze ever, but we still have a foot of ice and we got a foot of snow last night.

At least the Black Bears are going to the Frozen Four.
Michigan skiing
Unregistered User
(4/5/07 12:16 pm)
Reply Midwest spring
We've been skiing for two weeks. Now it looks like we won't touch the water for another two weeks. 1-2 inches of snow on the ground. THIS SUCKS!

Registered User
Posts: 255
(4/5/07 1:24 pm)
Reply we're in same boat
In Ohio, we went from 80 degrees tuesday to mid twenties and snow wednesday.
Steve B.

Registered User
Posts: 143
(4/5/07 2:13 pm)
Reply Re: midwest "spring" sucks
Stop Complianing, we got 13" of snow today !! We won't be sking here in Maine for a month and a half.

Registered User
Posts: 116
(4/5/07 2:22 pm)
Reply the bright side
at least you can eat lobster while waiting for the big thaw. there isn't even any corn in iowa right now.

Registered User
Posts: 165
(4/5/07 2:27 pm)
Reply Mother Nature you are cruel

Rykert -

I am dying. Last monday I was all pumped to pop the boat in. Now, I am going back and finding my winter clothes again. What a terrible tease.

Ham Wallace
Registered User
Posts: 677
(4/6/07 5:37 am)
Reply WaterSkiers for Global Warming
The Groundhawg was on our side, we have had an early spring with record high temps. Our water is usually 62 degrees on April 1. It was 78. A dream come true. Feeling just about in shape enough to take 2 sets, the frige door was opened. We went from 83 degree days to br-r-r-r-r. I guess I better re-winterize the boat. 24 degrees tonight. Looks like record April low temps.

-------(Ham hails from the great state of Tennesse. As you can see, this is not a regional issue)---------
By the way, I hear that he's an (whisper) Alabama (return to normal voice) fan.

Registered User
Posts: 256
(4/6/07 8:29 am)
Reply enough is enough
5 more inches of snow on the car friday morning. Hopefully, water will warm up by June.

Steve B.
Registered User
Posts: 110
(4/6/07 11:07 am)
Reply Global warming, my eye !
Global warming, my eye !

Those of you that have new boats with cats in the exhausts take them out - We're freezing.

It was so cold this morning in Maine that when I took my two dogs out, their pee froze before it hit the ground !

Registered User
Posts: 30
(4/6/07 11:18 am)
Reply Not too bad in California
We feel for you guys in the midwest and east where it is still snowing. It's rough when you want to start skiing and can't.

Here in Sacramento, it was 81 yesterday and we've been skiing for a month. Don't even need the wetsuit anymore.

That was the EZ board equivalent of humming "nah-nah nah-nah nah-naaaahhhhh."

Ah, springtime

I even checked with my weather spotter in south Louisiana (my mom) and she told me that that it the temp dropped to 30 degrees 30 miles north of New Orleans.

This is insane.
Hey Tournamentwaterski: how about you and your skiing buddies get a few giant fans in Saremento, point them to the east, and blow some warm air my way? desperrate times call for desperate measures.
I'll even plug your website
tournament waterski

If the weather does not change soon, we might lose a member of the ski blog community, asthey are trapped in an ice flow.

No telling what could happen if a spring thaw does not free their craft in the next few days

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Now the bad News

Lakerykert APB!!!!!

Attention, all skiers who window shop for ski equipment on the web!!!

These are two posts taken from the skifly gossip board on
(your fearless blog moderator is nohypothermia)

nohypothermia Registered UserPosts: 113(3/26/07 6:07 pm)Reply
Earlier this afternoon (3/26) women's 1 and University of Iowa skier Leah Timmerman had her jumpers stolen at coralville lake in North Liberty, Iowa. The jumpers are connelly's either 82" or 84" the older graphics. If you see any jumpers like thse on ebay or other sites please email her at
leah - timmerman @ uiowa. edu (remove spaces)

Leah Registered UserPosts: 1(3/26/07 10:45 pm)Reply
Yes, thank you so much Rykert! They are 84" Connelly HC 2000, so if anyone sees a pair that fits this description please contact me!! also my jump suit (womens intensity, black and purple, size 12) and masterline sling, size medium, were stolen, so you might see everything in a package deal. Thank you!

Also, If you are in the Iowa City/Cedar Rapids area and happen to see a Jeep Grand Cherokee with a white "Team Daiwa" decal on the rear windshield, Please jot down the Tag # and contact Leah at the above email address. The owner of that vehicle was the lsat person seen at the Mehaffey Bridge boat ramp where the skis and equipment were stolen

Creaky Rowboat and Water on the Brain, could you please post a copy of this on your blogs inorder to get the word out.

First, the good news...

For the first time I began skiing in the Midwest, I got in the water before April 1st. [did I beat you, Water on the Brain?]

I rode my new jumpers. The word from the boat crew was that I was caught off-guard by the accelleration of the skis on my first cut. Apparently, It was an "oh shit" expression. The boat crew's observation matched my own feelings at the time.

Sorry, no pics. we went out at the last minute and I didn't have a camera with me. My apologies to my millions of readers (Ok, that's a stretch). You'll just have to imagine some guy riding a new pair of Goodmans behind a POS '97 Moomba on a choppy public lake that was full of floating, dead, rotten fish

Monday, February 19, 2007

Happiness is...

a bead of sweat. The 40 -degree barrier has been shattered today. Maybe that groundhog isn't so damn crazy after all.

He's not crazy, he's just pissed that there's still snow on the ground.

I'm gonna go batshit crazy if spring doesn't get here soon.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Several years ago...

I read one of the funniest books I had ever read in my life: Never Sniff a Gift Fish
by Partick F. McManus .

gift fish

The book is collection of short stories recounting the goofy missteps that can foul up a relaxing day spent in the woods with a rod or a gun. McManus begins one of the stories with a line that made me laugh out loud. Only now, after two years of marriage, do I realize its profundity. It goes something like this: Hunting and fishing are expensive hobbies because they require furs, fancy jewelry and other high end equipment (liberal paraphrasing).

Now I know what he was talking about. Since last fall, I have been contemplating buying a new pair of jumpers, as my old ones are about 7 years old. Every time the conversation has come up, my remarks have been met with eye rolling and "suggestions" of postponement.

For the last several months, Libby has wanted to change the setting for her engagement diamond. She has talked about it for months, but never really seemed serious about it until about three weeks ago, when she closed the deal at a jewelry store in Des Moines. I think it will look something like this :

Maybe a different color, or size or something like that, I'm not all that sure.

You know what they say, one good turn deserves another. That ring is an unambiguous green light to buy a new pair of jumpers.

About a week ago, I spotted a deal on a lightly used pair of Goodman Llewellyn Pros, so I (alert the pun police) jumped at the chance.

and here they are, ready for a new home.

Has anyone seen the UPS man yet?

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


trick skiing footage. This is Nicholas Leforestier's 12,400 pt world record.

M. Leforestier, vous etes le meilleur de figures. Pardonnez, mais il est trop difficile de mettre les accents avec cet ordinateur.
(a minor in French has to be good for something)

Now, if only the elusive Kreuger 243' vid could be unearthed. It must be on a hard drive somewhere. We have this thing called video jump, for Chirst's sake. I seriously doubt someone at the site of the record, saw the jump footage and thought "Ehhhh, I'll just erase this 243-foot jump from my hard drive to free up disk space for Boys' 1 slalom." Or, worse yet, the jump was immortalized on VHS, only to be overdubbed by a dumbass for a can't-miss American Idol retrospective.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Any SAC alumnus...

will see this and flash a nostalgic smile.

This just in...

YouTube has a waterfront lot on Lakerykert.
Right now, the rest of the world is welcoming me to 2003

Boats are for suckers

"Major equipment purchases and marital bliss"* has been postponed until next time.

*lower case except for the first word: That's APA format-- for all you eggheads out there. I guess the better part of a decade of college taught me,uh, something.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Screw winter, I'll do some tricking!!

The uber-angst of winter has brought forth a sliver of inspiration: Instead of longing for time on the water, I can practice tricks with out the normal hazards of floating ice and less-than-desirable core temperatures. I think I have put together a cheap, effective dryland tricks simulator.

Here are the pieces:
a rubber floormat, a standard trick handle, and a 16" wobble board . The wobble board works really well. Because it's unstable in every direction, I have to use perfect form to execute the simplest tricks. A rubber floormat allows the board to spin but keeps the board form being constantly pulled forward by the resistance tubing.


Speaking of tubing, the bungee cords were a failure. I found something better, SPRI resistance tubes . The different colors have different resistance. I use the hardest resistance(purple) for practicing basic surface turns, the next lowest (blue) for practicing the LB/LF sequence, and a low resistance (red) for practicing a RTB. My plan is to perfect my form with low resistance, and to move up to purple by the time I'm ready to trick for real.

SPRI tubes

This is my footing for practicing toe tricks and stepovers.
toe/line tricks

This is how I stand on the board for hand practice
hand tricks

The combination of the wobble board and the tubing gives a realistic simulation except for one problem: when slack rope is created while skiing, there is a hard jerk on the rope. This cannot happen with resistance tubing. Unfortunately, that's the best I can do. I don't have access to a rope and pulley that is set at a height similar to that of a pylon. The ideal hookup would be a cable crossover machine with height adjustment. My gym doesn't have one of those.

If anybody out there has their own dryland rig, I'd love to hear from you, to find out what works and what doesn't.

NEXT: major equipment purchases and marital bliss

Friday, January 05, 2007

The Lakerykert Hiatus...

is, to quote (out of context) ol' dead-eye Dick Cheney, "in its last throes."

Coming soon:

an inexpensive dry-land tricks simulator

it's still in experimental stages, but shows promise for SURFACE hands and toes.

*message to the denizens of the rowboat: it's a hiatus, I have not been lazy. Hiati (is that the plural?) are productive