Hiking under the grab rail when roll tacking?

Thread starter #1
According to the LaserXd folks, when roll tacking, "to get a really powerful hike, [you should] kick your hiking boots under the grabrail".

Has any of you ever done it this way? What would be the way to do it? Maybe hiking with your heels under the windward grab rail? I guess one should do it with one foot only, since the aft foot should already be over the hiking strap when starting the roll.

Any thoughts on this?
 
#4
Given the amount of bare-footed sailors during all (major) events, I doubt if it's done by every sailor... ;) Come to think about it: body length - especially the length of the sailor's legs plays an important role as well!

Menno
 
Thread starter #5
That would make more sense. The original phrase is sloppy and ambiguous nevertheless.

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The article claims that by hiking under the grab rail you get "a really powerful hike", that is a hike more powerful than a regular one under the hiking strap.

I don't think that a more powerful hike could be achieved by putting one's toes under the leeward grab rail, since more of your bodyweight would be inside the boat than if you were hiking under the hiking strap, or the windward grab rail for that matter.

Am I making sense here?
 
#6
The article claims that by hiking under the grab rail you get "a really powerful hike", that is a hike more powerful than a regular one under the hiking strap.
The text doesn't explicitly make that comparison, but I assume it's that you get a more solid contact to the boat through the rail than the strap, which always has some lateral play. It makes sense in conditions when you're not fully hiking, and your feet are close to the leeward rail anyway. "Powerful" in this context wouldn't mean "far to windward".

But yeah, it's badly written if you need to analyze it like this.

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#8
I am 6ft 2 and when I tack I put my back for into the far left or far right (far left from port to starboard and far right from starboard to port) corner of the cockpit (under the rail) this is what gives me the leverage to roll the boat on top of myself. But not an option if you don't wear boots, easy way to lose some toenails.
 
Thread starter #10
I am 6ft 2 and when I tack I put my back for into the far left or far right (far left from port to starboard and far right from starboard to port) corner of the cockpit (under the rail)
Let me get this straight:

Before you cross the boat from port to starboard, you put your (aft?) foot into the far left (bow?) corner of the cockpit, under the grab rail, so as to make the boat roll over you.

And before you cross the boat from starboard to port, you put your (aft?) foot into the far right (bow?) corner of the cockpit, under the grab rail, so as to make the boat roll over you.

In other words, you roll the boat by putting your aft foot under the grab rail in the bow corner of the cockpit, right?
 
#11
Tomorrow off to Medemblik (known to a lot of European sailors I suppose) for my son's final training before going to Roses (Spain) for the Europa Cup regatta next week's Friday - Sunday. I'll ask my son and his mates what they make of this 'rail-thing'. Quite a few of those 16/17 y/o young men are way over 6ft and a few are significantly shorter.

The weather forecast is more than brilliant*): 25C and 15 - 20 kn from the south (= warm air), so there's enough to try when it comes to tacking.

Menno

*) more than 130 days this year with daily temps >20C. An all-time high. Oct. 12 has never been as hot as today and tomorrow will be hotter...
 
#13
Test-day today: "...it only works when you're 6ft or taller. If you're smaller, you have to reach for the rail with your toes, then your body tends to come back into the cockpit compromising a smooth tack."

I don't sail a Laser myself (only larger wooden keel boats...) so I have to take the boys' words for it.
 
Thread starter #14
Test-day today: "...it only works when you're 6ft or taller. If you're smaller, you have to reach for the rail with your toes, then your body tends to come back into the cockpit compromising a smooth tack."

I don't sail a Laser myself (only larger wooden keel boats...) so I have to take the boys' words for it.
Thank you Thieuster! Did the boys mention why a tall person would rather hike under the grab rail than under the hiking strap? For a more powerful roll perhaps?
 
#15
The strap is more or less located in the centre of the boat. Looking from the rear, behind the boat: See it as a circle when you tack, sit down and start hiking again. The radius of the circle is your body-length. A longer radius makes tacking and hiking easier, pushing the boat down/level. When you put the tows under the opposite bar and 'lift', it's as extending the radius. You can't add 20/30 cm to your total length, but you can add lifting power to the opposite side.

When you're too small *short legs*, there's a tendency to crawl back into the boat to force your toes under the rail, making yourself smaller thus reducing the radius. Contra productive.

Apart from that, when I showed the squad the video, the comments about a "...sloppy tacking, uncoordinated movement..." were the first things that I heard. "What's he doing? Chasing seagulls away?" In short: when you move like this, there's no advantage to be gained from 'toe-ing' the rail. "First, learn to do some proper tacking!"

Not very positive. But as said, I don't sail a Laser myself!

Menno
 
Thread starter #16
Thanks Menno!

Gonna try this tomorrow in Buenos Aires, forecast is 23ºC and about 11 knots, ideal for roll tacking.

My instinct tells me I should kick the grab rail with my bow foot under the hiking strap...

Stay tuned!

;)
 
#19
I am not sure (still a beginner) aft foot over strap, forward foot under and then to force the roll both feet under the rail??
It is more common for me in 'just hiking a bit' conditions I abuse the grabrail with my toes.
 
#20
Had a nice day on the water today... thirteen degrees (as predicted), alternating sun and haze, light to full hiking conditions, gusty with big shifts though.
Some observations:
1) my hiking boots don't fit under the grabrails,
2) you'd have to come in from a hiking position for your feet to reach the leeward rail, at which stage you should already be heeling to windward when going into a tack, and
3) I could really, really use some good coaching :rolleyes:

I would be quite happy if I could tack like Andrew Scrivan (in the video), so if the up-and-coming Dutch kids can afford to make fun out of him, then they are on a pretty high level to begin with!

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