"...because he is like 85% heavier than I am, no offense..."
For the last few days I’ve been doing downwinders with Michi Schweiger. He’s a really fast paddler and he totally smokes me! The most infuriating thing is that, as he quickly pulls away from me, he hardly paddles!
On the last downwinder we did, he told me that my strength to weight ratio was solid, which I suppose isn’t hard for me since I only weigh 100 pounds... But anyways, he said that my paddling was strong and that he even had a hard time keeping up in flat water! This was because he is like 85% heavier than I am, no offense Michi; but not 85% stronger. I always knew I had a little gorilla in me. (My Dad says that the only gorilla I have in me is gorilla butt!) He said the reason why he was so much faster than me was because he could connect his glides. This happens when you use the swell that you’re currently on to propel you to the next swell and so on. So today I did a downwinder by myself to practice connecting glides.
As soon as I got into open waters I focused not on looking at the nose of my board and paddling as hard as I could but looking around me for the next route to a better glide. I also found that when I connected glides I didn’t have to paddle constantly, instead I just paddled hard when I need to get over to another swell and took breaks when no paddling was needed. By the end of the run I was connecting glides like a maniac!
Not only is connecting glides faster, it also takes less energy! So when I got to the inside near the beach where I would land, I was able to use the same gorilla strength I had before! With my new found skittles, I can’t wait to do a downwinder with Michi again!