Autonomous Motion

Kahuna Big Stick

Skater's pavement paddle

The Kahuna Big Stick is a lightweight wooden shaft with fixed rubber wheels that allows a skater to push and pull while keeping balanced with both feet as opposed to pumping with one foot. On the level, it is way superior to foot-pumping. Even on uphills, I’ve found if I do a few foot pumps, then follow with a few paddles, it’s faster and smoother. On slight downslopes, I can now get a lot more speed by not having to foot pump. It’s got me skating a two-block section in town that used to be too slow. Plus, it adds an upper body workout to a sport that, traditionally, challenges your legs mostly. Surfers see me with it and invariably break into a grin; they instantly get it and are charmed. It really is incredible. The day I got my 5′ 6″ Big Stick, I tried it out in a parking lot while getting gas. Boy! After about five tentative strokes, I started reaching out as far as I could, zooming around. Later that night I decided to skate in the streets (no cars). I got in a bunch of half-mile downhills in an hour. It is insane fun. One disadvantage: You’re carrying this stick rather than free skating down hills.

-- Lloyd Kahn 09/10/08

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