Check out the latest in April 2013 ThePaddler Ezine Magazine – This issue Suzie Cooney is featured to inspire you and encourage those new to the sport of stand up paddling, to hop aboard and get started now.
Music makes the world go round and it makes me paddle faster! Let’s face it, training at high speed anything takes a little motivating and maybe some groovy tunes will help you paddle faster too and keep your stand up paddle training sessions more focused and gratifying. Gear review below.
photo credit Darrell Wong All Rights Reserved
Whether you’re training for long distance courses, or adding time or additional miles to your current training regime and you’re a recreational paddler, those long hard miles with some tunes to make you smile through the pain and increase your pace could be just the trick for you. I want to share with you here how to enhance your SUP training so it’s more structured and enjoyable with music.
Like any kind of training I do, I treat my stand up paddle training sessions like a session in my studio or on the beach. I have a plan usually with a goal in mind; I’m well hydrated and fueled ( solid breakfast ) and have my rock’n play list that puts a smile on my face. I have a variety of artists that I’ve selected that actually help me control my interval spreads.
Tip: Don’t play the music too loud for you’ll want to make sure barges or cruise ships or other paddlers have you in sight and you know they are there.
For example, plan: 5 miles flat water intervals Kahului Harbor. There may be side chop or head winds. First, I warm up to (2) two mellow grooves, then I know after my 6-7 minute paddle which is about how long these two songs will be in total; the next song is going to have a faster tempo so I’ll increase my paddling tempo a one notch up.
In this warm up mode to medium tempo paddling speed, my stroke distance is of average length with a decent reach and my breath is steady as I begin to prepare my mental state for the next song.
Then full on heavy guitar, full throttle song like Renegades of Funk by Rage Against the Machine, reaching and digging with everything I’ve got! Yeah! Now here my stroke distance changes, my brain state shifts and I’m finding my deepest power in my obliques to share the load and power.
I’ll break it down. So that full throttle song is 4:34 minutes, too long to maintain a true state of and normal anaerobic threshold, so I give it 1 minute, then don’t cool down fully but bring down my pace, lengthen my stroke for the rest of the song. I’m still focused, head down and keeping my form in hopefully consistent from left and right side of board. I know this is temporary. I drink a sip of water from my hydration pack and get ready.
This is TRICIA BUTI
Powerful paddler and Amateur Champion, world ranked cutter is what we call in Hawaii a real panilo.
I didn’t know this, but time in the saddle ( literally ) translates to an amazing new stand up paddler. It wasn’t until I had the pleasure of meeting Tricia Buti who came to Maui real recently to take a SUP coaching session with me; did I learn that to be able to manage the power of such an amazing animal, a cutting horse you have to have incredible balance to look so graceful while you herd a head of steer.
Both sports SUP and cutting horses require balance, courage and strength. Learn more about this courageous gal from the great North West who has been through quite a bit. With determination and a strong will, she is now doing more than every and feels that SUP has helped her in the saddle.
I told her there would me no herding me, but I’m always open to learn new things. She opened my eyes to a whole other world as I watched her on the water, so strong, so focused with a special fire in here eye. Get ready world and the state of Washington! Meet Tricia: ( in the photos of her below, she mentioned this day was a brisk 40 degrees)
By: Tricia Buti
As a competitive horseback rider, being in sync with my horse with impeccable timing is what brings a big score and the win. Cutting horses have an innate ability to read a cow and mirror its moves, with very little help from the rider. In cutting, the horse and rider cut a particular cow out of a herd. Once the cow is moved out front, the rider then puts their hand down and is no longer able to cue the horse via the reins, and can only use their feet to cue their horse, and their seat to signal stops. The horse then mirrors the cow and keeps it from returning to the herd. Perfect sync results in high scores.
“Sometimes fate seems to send a subtle message in ordinary observations. This time it came from a name and the resulting initials – Suzie Cooney, SC. Ed and I are in week 8 of our “Eddie Will Go on the Olukai Ho’olaule’a” race – comeback from extensive shoulder surgery. Week 8 is the best one yet. We are actually in Maui and are SUP surfing and doing sweet down-winders every day on our Naish 14? Glide GX. Last night we had dinner with our trainer-from-a-distance, Suzie Cooney, CPT of Suzie Trains Maui.
There’s nothing like a face-to-face conversation over ono burgers at the Fish Market Restaurant in Paia, especially after all the support we’ve gained from Suzie over the past months. How did two 63 year olds from Oregon come to be trained by Suzie Cooney on Maui? That’s quite a story.
We were casually playing at down-wind riding while on vacation in Maui in May 2011. Hearing that the Olukai Ho’olaule’a offered a “fun race” of just 4 miles we grabbed our rental surfboards and registered. The day of the race we were all butterflies and doubt. Ed was having shoulder surgery 4 days later and we were second-guessing everything. Then the announcer gathered us all for a pre-race warm-up, and we met Suzie.
With a warm smile and ultimate encouragement she talked and moved the nervous group through breathing, stretching and a warm-up. Surprisingly, by the time we were done the group had a relaxed and solidified feel. Then we were off for one of the most exhilarating fun-runs ever. We decided that when Ed was able to train after his surgery, just seven weeks ago, we would start training with Suzie. We set a goal to do the 8-mile run from Maliko Gulch to Kanaha. Suzie’s regimine has been just what Ed needed. Continue reading Inspirational Stand Up Paddlers Spread the Stoke As They Practice Their Strokes
WOW, DON’T MISS OUT ON THE GENEROUS OFFER! FREE SHIPPINGTHROUGH DEC 17TH
“The most fun you’ll have off the water, I promise. You won’t even know you’re working out!”
For the BEGINNER to ADVANCED STAND UP PADDLER, This on-land training gear will totally increase your core and paddle power, leg strength and endurance, seriously improve your balance and reaction time.
Everyone knows that you’re coming to the Suzie Trains Maui studio or even at the beach, each session includes some serious time on the Indo Board line of training gear. For the beginner paddler, I may suggest the 24″ Gigante Flo Cushionthat compliments theRocker Board very well. For the intermediate to advanced paddlers the 24″ Gigante Flo Cushioncombined with the Kicktail Board is also a very fine choice.
In the photo above, I’ve placed my 9’0″ Naish Mana atop of the Gigante disc. More air or less air in the disc changes the exercise. ( don’t forget to removes fins )
In this photo, I’m “loading” my hips, legs and ankles with a 15lb kettle bell resting on my shoulder while I perform leg squats with 3-5s hold. WOW, burn. This helps increase total body and SUP board endurance. ( I’m on the “Kicktail” with just a little air in the Gigante to really make it work. )
I have so many videos on this website and articles that will help you advance your SUP skills and performance. So check them out!
The Indo Board Company stands behind their products and so do I.
Hop aboard and order yours today! If you need help deciding on what you may need for your health and training needs or for someone else on your list, please feel free to contact me through this website. I’m happy to help.
Nevada SUP Paddler Scott Boyles checking in with a Big Win and Big Stoke
One of the many rewards of helping people with their stand up paddling stroke/fitness/technique is getting emails, photos and updates of their stoke and even better, wins in their local events. Makes a coach proud!
I had the chance to catch up with Scott Boyles at this year’s Battle of the Paddle at Dana Point where I could see from the fire in his eyes, discipline and strength in his body that this was only the beginning for him.
Suzie & Scott 2012 BOP Dana Point, CA.
Scott came to Maui with his wife Cheryl last year and took a lesson with me to improve his stroke. He was incredibly technical which I enjoyed all the more. He got it and he got it fast. As a student, he was a quick study and understood the finer nuances that take most people a little more time to grasp. With his anatomical knowledge and practice, I knew he’d have big breakthroughs too.
As he was already in excellent shape, it didn’t take him long to find his true core power ( about 5 minutes! ). He was able to understand how to use and transfer that power directly to the board and water. Impressive.
“[I had] paddled [only] twice in my life. My wife Cheryl and I went to Maui, called Suzie Cooney. She invited us on a community downwinder from Paia Bay to Kanaha. Could barely stay on the board! Then I took a personal paddle lesson from her, and she demonstrated the great ability to coach technique, but more importantly communicate in an effective way. She was also so laid back as was the community she introduced us to, it really made it a awesome experience.
Went home, bought a board and set the goal to complete the 22 miler across Tahoe race (supported by a lovely wife who knows I need a “focus” on a physical activity). [I] achieved that in 2011. Did a number of other races, many sponsored by South Lake Tahoe Stand Up Paddle. Trained more, paddled lots, coached more by Tracy Day, bought another board a Flatwater Paddle, a fricking rocket. Then won the 18-55 age group in the 12′ 6″ class in the 2012, 22 miler. By the way, all at age 50!
Suzie is definitely a high ranking ambassador of SUP awesomeness, along with many others.”
So when I saw Scott again, as a trainer, of course, I noticed his ripped abs and asked if he’d share his training secret. He makes it look so easy!
Scott Boyle defying gravity in plank pose on his SUP
“For my abs: I do crunches once every couple months or so, up to 5 reps maybe 3 sets max. They are hard on the back and really unnecessary! (I learned a lot about true core strength following my second lower back surgery.) Ab strength is totally built on exercises that are based on core and balance as the primary foundation.”
Scott also came in 3rd in age group and 8th overall in the famous Tahoe Nalu long distance race.
I’m sure we’ll see and hear more of Scott’s wins, but most importantly he is spreading the stoke of SUP and is living proof that stand up paddling is a great way to stay in shape, build new strength and offers an amazing way to strengthen the core.
Having also experienced serious back issues myself, it is truly amazing how the body can respond. Proper guidance from your medical team is paramount. Scott rebuilt his lumbar foundation and amazingly is able to maintain his flexibility, range of trunk strength, leg strength and core strength. These combined components will enable him to enjoy SUP at this level and allow for a higher quality of life.
Scott, you are definitely an inspiration to me, and now you will reach thousands more.
Mahalo Scott for sharing and hope to see more photos. Maybe at next year’s OluKai Ho’olaule’a. We’d love to have you again.
Your fan, Suzie Cooney, CPTof Suzie Trains Maui, LLC
Downwinder with Peter coming into Camp One photo by Harry Wiewel
People dream of coming to Maui for many things, but one thing for sure, Maui is THE place to experience the thrill of a north shore downwinder, also referred to as a “Maliko Run.” I have the pleasure of introducing people to SUP or help them advance their current levels with the ultimate goal of safely navigating their first downwind adventure.
Safety, strength and open ocean knowledge is my primary focus to allow for this amazing stand up paddling experience. With the popularity of the sport completely exploding, and with Maui being the hotbed of gear development, the home of incredible talent and of course year-round conditions that are so inviting, who wouldn’t want to come and train and paddle here.
In this article, I’m feature a cool cat all the way from the East Coast, Peter Davies. Peter found me through the web and in the past I’ve often given him tips via phone and email. His goal, get to Maui! Well, low and behold the call came and it was time to get the gear and studio ready!
The plan:get Peter paddling stronger, improve his technique, increase ocean knowledge and ultimately do some downwinders.
Peter training with TRX Rip Trainer
First stop, my studio. Here is where I can learn the most about someone’s state of mind, how their body performs first on land which helps me cue them more effectively on the water. If I get to know one’s personality, how they learn best and take direction this inevitably helps tremendously. I can determine how hard to push or when to hold back and offer maybe some encourage words of reassurance.
TIme in studio includes core review ( since your power comes from there ), balance and reaction training on the cool Indo Board Balance Training gear and also some TRX Rip Trainer dynamic paddling exercises to see where we are starting and what we need to do out on the water.
Peter was ready for anything and everything I would literally throw his way. Surrounded by Naish boards everywhere, paddles, cool action posters, trades blowing hard with the music cranked, I cracked the whip, all in preparation for the big day.
We couldn’t have asked for better conditions. The trades were blowing a nice, steady consistent ENE direction ( perfect ) at about 25mph+. The first test, was paddling in the harbor to see what he had, and wow, strong, focused and quick study. I could see this guy was determined to get it right. He was getting his groove, reaching like never before and putting together all the technical aspects into one smooth stroke.
Then off to Paia Bay for the downwind number one. This is a mini downwinder of 3 miles that offers a bit of everything. As we carried our boards to the water’s edge I offered some tips and absolute requirements to assure a successful journey. Peter was ready to rock it.
For someone who is very new to water sports in general, the ocean was a new playground and a new arena. Peter, a former professional squash player was used to pressure and intense action. I knew he’d do well and that he did. Coming into Camp One over the reef was an eye opener, but he handled it like a pro.
Peter Davies Reflecting on his first Maui Downwinder: Stoked!
Our finish at Kanaha Beach Park was spectacular and a total rush for him and me as a coach and trainer. This to me is my biggest reward. I could tell he had a flush of adrenaline pumping through his veins and the look in his eyes read that he definitely, absolutely wanted more.
“My ultimate goal is to compete in the Maliko 8 mile race and as I am relatively new to water sports I was looking to work with a trainer that was not only familiar with local conditions but could also help me elevate my paddling skills to the next level and was not disappointed in hiring Suzie. She is both extremely knowledgeable and very personable, we worked in her studio where she designed a fitness program specific to my ongoing paddling needs and spent time on the water. I did two, 3 mile downwinders where we started at Paia Bay, paddled down past Spreks, then over the reef into Camp One and finished at the lifeguard tower at Kanaha beach.
It was an incredible experience that is hard to describe in words the thrill of catching bumps and glides but was also reassuring to know that Suzie was close by to help me safely navigate the swells. Once you have experienced a Maui downwinder you are spoiled forever and when I return I cannot imagine not hiring Suzie to help me continue improving my paddling skills in the ocean.”
A Simple Training Tip For SUP to Maximize Leg Strength and Endurance with the Indo Board Training Gear
By Suzie Cooney, CPT Owner of Suzie Trains Maui
More and more people are stand up paddling and I get flooded with emails on how to strengthen the legs to help reduce fatigue, increase performance for distance, wave paddling and simply cruising. There is not one answer but I have a tip that can help all the above at some level.
From beginners to professional paddlers, everyone can benefit to learn how to maximize your leg strength and endurance to you can enjoy paddling longer, possibly reduce injury or to push your limits and improve your performance.
I’ve been a Team Rider for Indo Board for years now and love how the sport and gear have evolved together to allow for smooth paddling and more water time. I’ve had numerous major injuries over the years, and seriously, my Indo Board gearhas brought me back faster and stronger than ever.
When folks are making transitions from flat water to wave paddling, it’s all footwork and water reading. It’s pretty awesome when you can train your body to connect to your brain’s intention and have it all right there. Connect your body to the waves, bump or trough if downwind paddling.
This simple tip I offer will wake up all the fine muscles around the feet, ankle, knees and hips independently of your other leg. I like this exercise ( see blow ) because although all the muscles of your body work together, by breaking it down and loading up each joint; we can then maximize each point to perform with it’s own strength and consistency, then ultimately allowing for every joint to excel in unison.
Additionally, the strength you gain will then allow for quicker reaction times to changing conditions, increase muscle endurance and hopefully minimize injury or overuse syndromes and other compensations. ( I am not a physician but have worked in sports orthopedics. Always consult with your personal specialist with regards to any injuries or if embarking on a new fitness routine.)
Even though I’m a “regular” surfer and paddler surfer, funny thing is I skateboard and snowboard “goofy”. So fortunately I will benefit from training with left foot and right foot forward. My point is, even though you may be one or the other, train both legs.
Inflate the Gigante Flo Cushion with less air for more difficulty or more air to slow it down. Place the Indo Board Rocker or Indo Board Kicktail on top with nubby side up for maximum traction of board to cushion. I also suggest that you kick off your shoes because any rubber will act as a false barrier between you and the real thing.
Step onto board slowly in a surfer’s stance with kettle bell or dumbbell in the hand of the opposite side of the foot your approach with. So if goofy or right foot, step up and hold weight in left hand.
To maximize results, hold weight “above” the joints we intend to stress, so up to shoulder. My joint targets: ankles, knees and hips.
I suggest “time” your set. For example, beginner would hold for 5-10 seconds, and advance to 30-60 seconds in each direction or with each foot.
Lower body into squat position, gaze forward, breathe and hold. Burn to fatigue. Shaking is okay and expected.
You will begin to feel your ankle, knee and hip burn and or shake! This is good! Hold on to this position as best you can and time yourself now. See how low you can go. Relax your feet and don’t look down.
Rise up slowly, step off the back of board onto ground rest then switch it up over to the opposite leg. Repeat.
If you have the opportunity to try both boards, the Ying and Yang (links here) and then the Kicktail, wow what a difference. The Kicktail, which is my favorite, is very challenging and offers a lot more ankle and foot action. This requires the small, tiny stabilizers to fire and fatigue, which is the result you want.
Again, the point I’m also attempting to illustrate is that by holding a weight over and above the joint or muscle group that you’d like to strengthen and train, you will maximize the benefit and outcome. The fact that we also get to add the variable of an unstable platform gives us the ultimate opportunity for your training. If the weight is below or at joint level it will produce a different result.
This kind of training is efficient and I promise you that you will definitely notice a difference the minute you get on the water. People who train with me are blown away of how much easier it is to literally step onto the wave, or last longer in channel crossing, or for any distance paddling.