Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Sea Kayak Rescues

'Tis the season for new rescue DVDs and hot on the heels of Gordon Brown's latest DVD comes a new DVD by Bryan Smith that features Leon Sommé and Shawna Franklin of Body Boat Blade called Sea Kayak Rescues, and it clocks in at a scant 25 minutes.
Our little viewing group ended up with quite a divided opinion.There's no question that the photography is excellent, but as an instructional DVD some of us thought that there was very little instruction to speak of, and that it was more of a demonstration DVD rather than an instructional DVD; after very brief and simplified descriptions of rescue techniques on flat water, we're quickly shown the rescues in more challenging water. Experienced kayakers may appreciate and understand the skills on display, but some of us were dubious that a beginner would understand the nuances of the skills presented without more in-depth explanation of the steps and manoeuvres involved. Some of our group did find the instruction technique effective, and Leon and Shawna are effective compelling presences on the screen, but some of us felt we'd just watched a trailer for a great DVD and were left hanging waiting for the real DVD to actually start. These criticisms don't take away from the fact that it is marvellously photographed and the rough water sequences are thrilling to watch. And it can't hurt to watch new examples of rescue techniques in action.
If you like watching kayaks in crazy conditions, this will be right up your alley, but as a learning aid your mileage may vary.


  1. I really felt that this DVD would work for someone who is a VISUAL learner and who can look at someone doing a physical action and then imitate that action pretty well. For someone who is an AUDITORY learner and who can learn from being told how do do an action, a better choice of DVD would be the ones John has from the University of Sea Kayaking with the British fella who invented bulkheads in sea kayaks... name has dropped out of my head, alas (migraines last week) ... This fella shows how to do a rescue and keeps up a running commentary with precise descriptions of where his knees are inside the kayak. He also describes shifting his weight and balance, something that a visual learner might see unconsciously but an auditory learner might not pay attention to until hearing words describing the move.

  2. I believe Paula is referring to "Sea Kayak with Gordon Brown Vol.2" dvd which we viewed recently, and not the USK rescue video which we haven't viewed.