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Teaching arm/hand path

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nicholasfmoore
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Teaching arm/hand path

#1

Post by nicholasfmoore » Sun Jun 21, 2020 2:11 pm

Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone taught a specific arm/hand path like Jason Borger, Joan Wulff or Jim Green? I think it's rather fascinating, and something which a lot of people have asked me about recently. I think it's important to be able to cast with a range of techniques, but i do often get asked "why are some never taught what to do with their arm/hand?" Which has really got me thinking;

I am now a confirmed 'flip flopper' for all of my fishing. It's tight, compact, easy and vertical. I do think that this is an extremely versatile technique, and you can still cast a very long way with a well executed double haul.

I'm sure you have all heard about 'keeping your thumb nail on a straight line' or 'cast with your hand following a washing line at shoulder/ear height' even Steve R talks about matching your hand path to trajectory (which i like actually). So, your short 10' accuracy cast would have a more up and down hand path, and your longer cast would end up with your hand more along the horizontal. I actually believe that almost every fishing cast should have an 'upwards trajectory' up to a certain point, then this stroke crosses over into distance comp mode.

So i think that for most fishing casts the back cast should be going up, and the forward cast should be going down or 'slightly down' or even horizontal. I do use layback to allow me to tilt the whole arc backwards for a horizontally straightening forward cast. :ninja:

Let me know your thoughts?

All the best!
Nick M

"Memento Piscantur Saepe" :upside:

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Paul Arden
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Re: Teaching arm/hand path

#2

Post by Paul Arden » Mon Jun 22, 2020 9:47 am

Hi Nick,

Absolutely. But not just hand path but the entire body from the feet up. I think that there are are many different hand paths to teach. Obviously it’s quite fundamental to the cast.

There does appear to be line of thought that body is style and rod is substance, but I don’t subscribe to this and for me I think most of our teaching revolves around improving form and making better, more efficient use of the body.

So I teach hand path, but I start with balance and foot position, and basically travel from the feet up to finish at the hand.

There are definitely some subtleties in the Casting Stroke that revolve around hand path, we have a domed hand path and Swoop as two clear examples of quite different hand paths both used in distance casting. At an advanced level I will teach both since I think it’s good practise to experiment with alternative casting techniques.

Cheers, Paul
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nicholasfmoore
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Joined: Tue Jul 16, 2019 1:41 pm

Re: Teaching arm/hand path

#3

Post by nicholasfmoore » Tue Jun 23, 2020 12:39 pm

Hi Paul,

Thank you for your thoughts!
There does appear to be line of thought that body is style and rod is substance, but I don’t subscribe to this and for me I think most of our teaching revolves around improving form and making better, more efficient use of the body.
I agree mate, it's a pretty strange way of looking at it. If you are balanced and comfortable, i think you will generally have good form (with some help of course) what you don't want to do is end up casting like a wacky inflatable arm flailing tube man. :pirate:

I do think that your flip flop is the most versatile and suits a lot of people, one huge benefit is the fact that you are less likely to introduce a tracking error, for straight line casts. Do you flip flop anymore by the way, or have you completely abandoned the technique? :)
So I teach hand path, but I start with balance and foot position, and basically travel from the feet up to finish at the hand.
That's a great bio mechanical teaching method, telling people to 'bend their knees' really does seem to help as well i think, and switching them to closed stance as every angler i've met seems to cast with open stance, even if a fish is 5' away. Now, i think that is very poor form. You wouldn't throw a ball into a cup, or play darts with an open stance with your arm out to the side. Am i being crazy, or does this sound silly?

Not sure what you mean by the swoop. Is it similar to what i call it 'the nike tick' where you are basically using thrust to help eliminate too much counterflex by forcing the rod to bend in the tip? It has other benefits naturally, and James kindly pointed these out to me. So basically driving your hand up at the end of the stroke?

I also think it's pretty essential to learn to cast with a variety of styles, especially for instructors. If you try and fix someone with your personal technique (without understanding theirs) then it could be disastrous. Don't know what you think about that.

All the best!
Nick M

"Memento Piscantur Saepe" :upside:

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Paul Arden
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Re: Teaching arm/hand path

#4

Post by Paul Arden » Tue Jun 23, 2020 1:20 pm

Well hang on a sec and let’s go back in time. “Flip-flop” was originally a piss-take out of Loop for renaming the Spey Cast the Underhand Cast. So I wouldn’t take it too seriously. It was a very big thing back then and so I knocked it in my own way. Even “Sexyloops” is not supposed to be taken seriously :D

All the Flip Flop is, is Pulling technique (Mel’s). All I did was put an extended Drift in there to try to get the same points at the top of the loop on the forward cast as on the backcast. Exactly the same as Jason’s “layback”.

I do still use it and I still teach it but I never actually called it “flip-flop” apart from when I’m taking the piss out of people for renaming casts. For me it’s a very good “accuracy style” and I like the elbow alignment with the target. It does give me the sharpest pointed loops for distance but they unroll at only around 105’!!

Swoop is a pronounced V hand path on the forward delivery. And I fully agree instructors need or should have a wide variety of casting styles! :) :)

Cheers, Paul
It's an exploration; bring a flyrod.

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nicholasfmoore
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Re: Teaching arm/hand path

#5

Post by nicholasfmoore » Tue Jun 23, 2020 6:46 pm

I do still use it and I still teach it but I never actually called it “flip-flop” apart from when I’m taking the piss out of people for renaming casts.
Oh dear! I've been calling it the flip flop in a serious sense 😂 Better just call it an elbow forward technique from now on, do you think that's a good description? That's great to know mate, i learn't it from watching your video. I don't know about you but when i use that technique, on the forward cast it feels like the butt ferule is going to blast apart :laugh: there was a cast that was called the 'under hand' cast, you can probably steer me in the right direction.

It's a wicked technique for really beautiful looking loops, and it's pretty difficult to throw tails unless you do something drastic. What i particularly like is the fact you increase your arc on the back cast with the forward stop staying in about the same place. There is no better feeling watching a really long (not comp distance long) cast fire straight over the tip with parallel loops, i really like the short stroke, it has a very pronounced 'DOINK!' feeling when you stop backwards and forwards.

The max i can get is 94' with that stroke mate, i could get more if i drove my hand straight out, in fact i might have a go with that, or maybe im doing something wrong?
Swoop is a pronounced V hand path on the forward delivery. And I fully agree instructors need or should have a wide variety of casting styles! :) :)


Sounds like we are talking about the same thing, awesome :) the fishing here is absolutely terrible with the heat, so i mainly just try different techniques just to keep things interesting.

All the best!
Nick M

"Memento Piscantur Saepe" :upside:

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Re: Teaching arm/hand path

#6

Post by Paul Arden » Tue Jun 23, 2020 7:47 pm

Funny thing, after spending time with MK I showed the pulling stroke to Henry Lowe at a game fair and one of he first comments was how difficult it was to throw a tail.

For me I just package the whole think up as closed stance accuracy. I think it’s a stroke/technique that everyone should learn! Can call it flip-flop - it still makes me laugh to think about it :D There is a lot of good stuff in it, but I would never call it a distinctive style.

One of the interesting things about this cast is CF is more aligned to the loop. Since then I’ve found other people use a similar “stop position” for this reason. Both with the 5 MED as well as T38.

I really had to steer away from it when Jon Allen put it past me. Probably one of the best things that ever happened!

Cheers, Paul
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nicholasfmoore
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Joined: Tue Jul 16, 2019 1:41 pm

Re: Teaching arm/hand path

#7

Post by nicholasfmoore » Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:03 am

Hi Paul,
One of the interesting things about this cast is CF is more aligned to the loop.
I noticed that yesterday when i was having a play around with accuracy practice. :cool:

I see what you mean mate, i suppose it's like changing gears, i think after 100' you have to change, more drag/stroke length etc. It sure makes it easier :cool:

Thank's!

All the best
Nick M

"Memento Piscantur Saepe" :upside:

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Re: Teaching arm/hand path

#8

Post by Paul Arden » Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:57 am

Yep it feels like a gear change to me too 👍
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