Builders' Forum Archives
Re: Hip Brace Placement
Posted by Mac on Aug 3, 2004
I think hip brace spacing has more to do with you than the kayak.
LeeG suggests that the hip braces can keep the fat from spreading out too much from under your sit bones, preventing lost circulation and numbness. That's what I did.
Most instructions I've read say that the hip braces should restrict your side-to-side travel during heavy bracing or rolls, to 1". I've had a hard time measuring this (hands are rather busy on the paddle) but it seems my sit bones aren't moving too much, and I still feel "locked in" when knee hanging at almost 90 degrees.
How does everyone feel about this? Start with your minicell foam at what you may feel to be too thick, but not so thick as to reduce circulation or the ability for your legs to spread enough for your knees to contact the underside of the deck at the sheers. (Sitting like a frog on his tail bone).(There is a forward/backward consideration too). Paddle for several sessions as you become aware of the pads (there will be a lot going on during your initial paddles - you haven't even decided on your final seat and backband placement yet - the hip pads follow. Once you're happy with seat, backband and foot pegs, THEN feel where the hip pads would feel best and start shaping - slowly. It's amazing how much difference a 1/4" makes. Too much and you have to start all over.
I know I've made this sound complicated, but not to worry - just leave the hip pads to the very end. My guess is this is your first build, and the hip pads are easily accessed and can be worked on later, after you two have learned to dance.
Have fun and happy paddling.
In Response to: Hip Brace Placement by Rich Flerra on Aug 2, 2004