I've used the alternative capsize drill coaching technique 3 times so far.
Have since made some changes over my original idea.
I basically split the whole capsize drill into 2 parts. For the first part, I get the paddlers to capsize but stay in kayak till I flip them over.
For the second part, they do the usual capsize drill.
This is what I do.
- Get 2 boats out in the water.
- 1st boat does part 1, 2nd boat watch.
- 2nd boat does part 1, 1st boat watch.
- 1st boat does part 2, 2nd boat watch.
- 1st boat goes back to shore and empty water, 2nd boat does part 2
- 2nd boat goes back to shore, 1st boat does part 1.
3 of them managed to overcome their fear and do the drill after completing part 1.
But the last boy was just too afraid of water. He couldnt even do part 1.
The first time he tried, he wet exited on his own. On the second try, he held on to the kayak with only one hand and I couldnt flip him over. During the third try, he grabbed on to my leg underwater!!!
He wouldnt even try the normal capsize drill, he only wanted to do part 1 because I would be there holding him and flipping him. Physical contact was a big factor in calming him. He needed someone to hold him.
Guess even this method is not fail proof.
Some funny things happened though. The 4 boys who were afraid of capsizing kept giving excuses. One particular excuse really took the cake.
The boy said: " I cannot do, I got block nose."
His friend replied: "Nobody can breathe underwater lah!"
Well said. Haha.
At the end of the day after washing the boats, their teacher came up to me and thanked me. She said that she knew some of them were quite "scaredy cats" and she really appreciated my patience when teaching them.
Hearing things like that are nice.
Great for the ego :)