OC Paddling Training & Conditioning

OC paddling training and conditioning can take on many forms.  We turned to the experts to get a glimpse into what personally drives them and what it entails to put together a structured training schedule.  Each paddler has a unique training schedule consisting of both paddling and alternate conditioning methods to achieve their desired level of fitness.

Paddling is the main component of training for OC1 and OC6 paddling.  The workouts themselves often consist of varied times, distances and speeds.  Finding the perfect balance between open ocean, wave experience and straight conditioning is an art.  Often times, a weight training program and other types endurance training are added to the mix.

No matter what, paddling fitness requires paddling, and lots of it!

We asked two of our ‘Elele to contribute a short write up on their current OC paddling training and conditioning.  One is located in Pacific North West of US and the other on the Island of Oahu.

Al Van Guisen

Paddling – conditioning: (to follow) Training – This time of year is one man racing season.  With team paddling taking up most of summer and fall, winter and spring provides a great relief from team workouts and allows freedom to do what you want or need.  It’s easy to get caught up in a strict training plan which is why I love the flexibility of the OC-1 season.  

When it’s windy Image-1and you need a break from the regiment, surfing bumps is always a priority.  You can never get enough of downwind surf runs especially if there’s been long droughts of windless-ness.  Surfing an OC-1 on an open ocean swell provides a stoke all it’s own, but it also teaches a lot.  It’s good to consistently remind yourself to look at the water ahead while you’re riding a bump so that you can project yourself into the next section.  Not only am I looking at the water ahead of me, but I’m also analyzing my effort in the surf.  I try to use the least amount of effort possible to catch the bumps.  It’s something I practice all the time in order to work on conserving energy and staying efficient.  Aloha, Al

Erik Scharffenberg

Here in the PNW, our paddling experience changes with the seasons. We do get beautiful summers, with very little rain and lots of warm sun. We’re also “lucky” that our rivers don’t freeze over in the winter, so we can paddle year round, even though it’s really cold. Right now, as spring has begun and the time has changed, it’s nice because the paddles after work don’t have to be in the dark.

12742716_1159159750761992_9012004063312228324_nThe weather is also beginning to change, and it’s so nice to paddle in shorts and a t-shirt again, instead of trying to strap your canoe on top of your car as fast as you can before your fingers freeze and become useless. Most of my training is done on the Willamette River, where I put in right downtown Portland, but paddle a mile up river and you begin to see some amazing wildlife. We get to see Bald Eagles, Great Blue Herons, and many other birds. We also enjoy Sea Lions, River Otters, Beavers, huge Sturgeon and many other fish jumping. It’s pretty special to be able to get in a good, hard workout, yet also enjoy nature. We’re nearing the end of our winter small boat series, where we race OC-1, OC-2, and surfskis on rivers, lakes, and the Sound, in Oregon, Washington, and Vancouver, BC. In fact, the championship race is this weekend in Seattle, and then it’s on to 6 man season!

Inez, Vic Allen, Meg

Stuck In A Rut?

With Spring in the air and the enthusiasm high to get out on the water it seems near impossible that we could get stuck in a rut with our paddling routine or training right?  It does happen. Here are some words of wisdom from ‘Elele Vic Anthony Allen.  He has many training miles under his belt so take it all in and here’s to training with enthusiasm and a great season!
Are you stuck in a rut, experiencing a plateau in strength, concerned with overtraining? Have your workouts become dull and lifeless, and in need of amping, ramping and revamping?
If this is your conclusion, could it be the problem is not the workout but your attitude? A bright and hopeful and energized state of mind can often transform an apparently fruitless and lifeless workout into an inspiring mountain-mover where two steps forward are followed by three steps upward and another one onward, and again and again to the top. Imagine the view at the mountain top, sense the fulfillment of the steep slopes hiked and every crack and ravine crossed. We reach the top one workout at a time. Vic Allen 8
Are you enjoying your training or is it distressing? Is it an obligation, or a desirable pursuit? Is it fun, like a hobby, sport or recreation, or is it hard work, toil and trouble, like stacking cinderblocks or digging ditches? I know — it’s sort of a combination of all the above!
Whoever we are, whatever the time of year and if we are yet with breath, we are always seeking more effective and interesting training methods. We know muscle develops slowly and strength builds gradually, and we’ve exhausted every training routine since the days of Sandow.
Make a plan! Truth is, any plan, if you haven’t practiced it in a long time and it isn’t an outright bad plan, is probably a good plan. The only requirements are for you to execute it with form, focus, intensity, assurance and continuity.

  • Start with nutrition… give Hammer Nutrition a try for great endurance fuel.
  • Get a paddle that feels good and is built right for your purpose.
  • Don’t quit! Quitting is so final. It’s also so tragic. Quitting, even an extended layoff, is like close to dying while still breathing. Inez, Vic Allen, Meg

First race of our season is just right around the corner.

See you Together on the Water — Vic Anthony Allen


Hats For Honduras

Hats For Honduras

Mike Olin is a retired Bend, OR Dentist performing great work in Honduras. Each year Mike travels to a unique town in Honduras to perform free dental procedures on school age children. This year Mike traveled to San Juancito — a small town in central Honduras.  KIALOA joined the ’cause’ to support the local kids by reaching out to our local community for hat donations and combining the donations with donated KIALOA hats prior to Mike’s departure.
Mike returned to Honduras on March 7th to perform free dental procedures on school age children. Kids go to school until 6-8 grade and then must pay to continue education.  In addition to the dental work, Mike gives out the donated hats to kids that demonstrate good behavior and helpfulness.

Hats For Honduras
A few words from Mike during his travels … “Here is main street Guadalajara, Honduras. Parking is not an issue but hard to parallel park in between tied up horses. You are looking at The Macy’s of the area as well as Home Depot and Target. Great week down here and only one day of Imonium so that was a success. Waiting for ride to the beautiful Tegucigalpa airport for 12 hours of relaxing travel to Redmond Intl.. Adios”.
Hats For Honduras

One of KIALOA’s 2016 initiatives is giving back to kids.  Stay tuned for other ‘stories’ of our contributions to kids.


A Peek into the Mind of a Product Designer

A Peek into the Mind of a Product Designer

During the last couple of months, every weekend morning Dave Chun was getting up early and heading into the shop. I happen to be married to Dave so after several weeks I asked him what he was up to. His typical response is, “I got stuff I gotta do.” This is one of those phrases that we banter around because it’s often indicative that he is deeply involved in a project at the creative level, where he’s so focused that he is often found deep in thought, staring into space. I know that’s when he’s being driven to design something new. I knew he had put his six-foot model sailboat project on hold. I knew he wasn’t working on spear guns or deep water fins. I was
pretty sure he wasn’t working on tricking out his gun stocks either.

I dug a little deeper. After a little more prompting, Dave told me, “I’m working on a shovel.” It had been snowing a lot in Bend so I asked him if he didn’t think our ergo shovels were good enough. His response was something to the effect of, “I’m working on an avalanche shovel.” For the life of me I couldn’t figure out how Dave came to this project. He doesn’t spend a lot of time in avalanche country he’s more of a liquid water guy. But then our friend Hal reminded us that water comes in many forms. I pressed on. After more prying he told me, “I don’t like the shovel I carry around in my rocket box. I can hear it sliding around in there when I start and stop.” He told me he didn’t want to carry it in the bed of his revered Ford Raptor (for fear of scratches). Nor did he want to store it in the cab of the truck because it took up too much room. So Dave, not being able to help himself when presented with a problem, starting dreaming up solutions. Thus the small, light, break apart, collapsible, double throw me down avalanche shovel idea was born. IMG_2776

I started interviewing Dave so I could write out his thought processes. While doing so he I decided to audiotape him and thought I’d share that with you all. When you listen to Dave, you will find other inspirations that influenced Dave on this particular project. This is how creativity unfolds and forms itself into something new. Enjoy this brief view into the creative mind of Dave Chun.



There’s a short amount of video with this, hoping to keep your attention for the 2+ minutes of the unedited audio tape.

Listen to Dave’s Shovel Story in this short video.