Thursday, March 26, 2009

Skate softly and carry a big stick

I saw this photo of Matthew McConaughey (loving that he's not only barefoot, but a goofy), and wondered what this skateboarding "aid" was all about. I thought he may have rigged up a stand-up paddle with wheels, but what for? Balance? Is he that lame of a skateboarder? This didn't seem likely, given that he's a decent surfer and stand-up paddler. So I Googled down the rabbit hole and found out that it is a real product.

Behold the $150 "ultimate land paddle." Turns out, it doesn't have wheels. They are round stationary rubber thingies that grip the pavement.

You use this paddle to mimic the motion of stand-up paddling on your longboard. But you can also use the stick for balance. It's endorsed by Buttons Kaluhiokalani, which is a pretty heavy plug, but it still is kinda like a crutch for old-man riders. I don't think younger kids are going to use it that much. But I, being old, totally would.

Stand-up Paddle Magazine did a review of the Kahuna Big Stick here. The editor says:

I was honestly surprised how identical the stroke felt compared to a stand up paddle surf stroke. I thought it would be different, however, it wasn’t. Although I was only using the equipment for no more than half an hour, the stroke pattern and the muscle groups used felt the same as those used on a stand up paddle surfboard. The Big Stick seems to be a great way to train and stay in shape for stand up paddle surfing when the waves are down or when you just can’t make it to the ocean.

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