If you are lucky enough to be one of those people out there that has a sexy new Rockstar 4.0, hell yeah! I hope you are as stoked on the boat as I am!
One thing about the 4.0 I have noticed is that due to the fact it’s such a drastic change from our previous models, though all in good ways, with all that room to play around with outfitting it has people a little more over the map on where they should be sitting in the boat. The 2014 and 2015 models had lower knees and less volume so you would end up sitting in a pretty similar position no matter what size you were. With the 4.0 between the much higher knees, the higher volume, as well as just more space to not only be comfortable no matter what size you are. You also have much more room to play around with seat positions forward and back as well as seat height. So I am gonna do a quick run through on how I like to outfit my 4.0, and hopefully it will help anyone out there who is wondering where the best place in their boat is.
The advice I am giving is just how I like to outfit my boat, it doesn’t mean where you are sitting or how you outfit your boat is wrong, it’s just what I prefer. If you like the boat where you are at, great! If you are having any troubles decided where to sit maybe some of these tips will help.
1. Try sitting higher:
For starters anyone that has paddled with me knows that I am all about sitting as low as possible in my boats, whether it’s creekboats or playboats, it’s just the way I like to be in my boats. Especially with the older models of the Rockstar I wouldn’t sit high at all, I would either sit on the plastic or just one seat pad. But with the 4.0 it is the first time in a long time I have really enjoyed moving myself up in height, without sacrificing any stability or comfort. I played around with seat height in Uganda and the higher I moved up, the more I was able to throw the boat around, and push the boat through on cartwheel moves. Plus with the higher knees you don’t lose any comfort moving up which is a big bonus, So I definitely recommend at least trying to sit higher in this boat than you might normally, you can always change it back.
2. Sit farther back:
I have always sat pretty far back in my playboats as I find it to be a nice position for both holes and waves. But when I first started paddling the 4.0 I was sitting a little bit forward just cause I was able to and wasn’t playing around with the outfitting much. But after a bit of time I decided to try sitting towards the back of the boat and I found it to be noticeably much better at least for myself. I found that it was more comfortable, wave take offs were a lot easier, and I had no issues with hole moves. If anything they were easier. It also made it sweet for big mcnastys and loop moves because there is so much volume in front of you. Most people think that if you move back in this boat it will make bow end moves much harder, but I actually think it didn’t effect my hole moves in any way, and between moving back and sitting higher, I found my hole moves to become much easier. One piece of advice is that unless you are a fairly tall person, you will definitely need to pump up the footbag to give you the support you need to sit farther back. I recommend putting a bit of foam in front of the footbag so that way you don’t have to pump up the footbag completely, and it will add some more support.
3. Keep those hip pads tight:
I have never been a very meticulous person when it comes to outfitting, but over the years I have realized just how much having support at your hips makes a huge difference, no matter what boat. But when it comes to playboating I think it is more important than ever. You definitely don’t want your butt sliding side to side when trying to do your tricks, so keep those hip pads at least touching your hips on both sides, it doesn’t need to be uncomfortable. Also a little side note, if you are having issues with your legs falling asleep, it is because your hip pads are most likely too far forward. Don’t forget to move your hip pads back if you move the seat back, as well as little bit up if you raise your seat. You should be able to have them tight while still able to kayak for hours on end!
4. My way doesn’t mean it’s the right way, mess around a little! Because this boat has more room to play around with outfitting, try some new things, if something isn’t working keep improving it. I spent a bit of time with the boat really trying different things and above is where I have loved it the most. But maybe you will like something different! Because of the increased volume I have noticed I can really play around with lots of different outfitting choices. So mess around, try different techniques, and enjoy the 4.0!! I sure as hell love it!!