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Old 25 May 2007, 15:29   #1
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Ideas to interest kids in Ribs

Hi All,
I'm looking for ideas to increase my kids' enthusiasm for going out in our rib. It's just me and my 2 kids (9 and 7). We started last season and my 7 yr old daughter (then 6) was extremely nervous at first. She hated it when we went from displacement up onto the plane, but gradually over the season her confidence increased so e.g. we got over to the Isle of Wight later in the summer (we're in Southampton).

However, when we went out this Easter, we seemed to be back to square one - screaming (in terror, not enjoyment!) when we tried to go faster.

We have a small rib (Ribcraft 4.8), but only go out when the weather's good, so I'm not doing anything overly ambitious. At the moment I'm a bit fed up, since my daughter just doesn't want to go out (but my 9 year old son is fine and enjoys it).

I'm looking for ideas that would make it more appealing, particularly for my daughter. Is it good to go out with other boats? What about places for lunch (we've been to the Folly but nowhere else), since they're always interested in food! Are trips to beaches good? In which case, which ones are easily accessible from So'ton? We've also tried fishing, which was a bit of a novelty for them.

We usually launch from Crosshouse Hard or sometimes Buckler's Hard. (Launching from Crosshouse with just 2 kids to hold the boat when I sort out the trailer makes me think that keelguard is a good idea...!)

Any input would be welcome. Thanks.

Gerry
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Old 25 May 2007, 15:37   #2
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Try letting her "drive" it makes a hell of a difference.

I bought my mate's kids an underwater viewer(bucket with glass bottom) and they love that.

You say she was screaming in terror - did you back off straight away? One of my mate's daughters was the same but within a few minutes she soon got used to the speed.
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Old 25 May 2007, 15:39   #3
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Codders has the right idea, get them involved, teach them how to drive (under close supervision). I would even recommend sending them on an introductionary powerboat course, likely to be level 1 at that age. Jimbo on here does own boat tuition and has experience teaching youngersters.
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Old 25 May 2007, 15:42   #4
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How about letting her take a friend. That eventually worked for me. Her friend was really enjoying herself so this seemed to make my daughter want to enjoy herself.

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Old 25 May 2007, 16:18   #5
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I think the involvement thing is key, the two smaller Nashers needed some help with their boat confidance as they grew up.

If you have a fishfinder and/or GPS teach them how to use it and give them an important job like keeping an eye on the depth, or checking the heading.
Driving is certainly a help too.

Above all take it easy otherwise they'll be put off for good.

Nasher.
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Old 25 May 2007, 19:51   #6
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Let them drive

Get them a donut and wetsuits

carry a small cheap dingy and let them go off and play in it whenever you are moored up at the beach . Tie it on a long line if its windy . Donut will double up for this .

Fishing works well

Most of all spend lots of time swimming to get maximium water confidence , pool in the winter of course .
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Old 25 May 2007, 21:12   #7
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I agree... driving, good weather, tubing (my eldest dragged everywhere in the thing... 22 miles one time~ )

As I have learned with skiing/snowboarding though, just 'cause they're your kids, doesn't mean they'll love your hobbies. Make sure you share in their interests as well...
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Old 26 May 2007, 01:32   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerry View Post
I'm looking for ideas that would make it more appealing, particularly for my daughter. Is it good to go out with other boats? What about places for lunch (we've been to the Folly but nowhere else), since they're always interested in food! Are trips to beaches good? In which case, which ones are easily accessible from So'ton? We've also tried fishing, which was a bit of a novelty for them.

Any input would be welcome. Thanks.

Gerry
Shorter trips? How about Warsash? Or bimbling up/down Beaulieu or upriver to the Jolly Sailor (up the Hamble). She just may not like speed (yet). Including swimming in a safe spot & bringing a picnic also makes it fun for all. Stopping in Cowes itself would make it a shorter trip also. Could involve a spot of shopping as a sweetener (always popular with the girls!). Get her to plan the trip using a chart/GPS so she can feel more comfy & in control.

Is she enjoying that launching experience? Or is she hanging onto a boat in terror while you shout instructions and drive away with the trailer?

Can she swim? Is she afraid of the water? A trip to the swimming pool with her/swimming lessons to build her confidence?

Ask her! But would suggest not to force her. We can all remember being dragged along to things our parents must have imagined were good for us. If you can get her to associate Ribbing with FUN in her mind, you may be on a winner!

Good luck! Hope she ends up liking it as much as you but it may not just be her thing.

Kathleen
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Old 26 May 2007, 02:51   #9
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My Daughter dosen't like salt spray in her face, in fact she hates it!

Try all the things mentioned above, they're all good suggestions, however another thing you could try is a helmet with a visor. This might give her a little more confidence by, keeping salt spray and water away, keeping the wind out, reduces the noise level and will generally make her much more comfortable which goes along way to helping her get used to boating life.
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Old 27 May 2007, 11:43   #10
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Some good psycholgy above not sure about the water toys just yet though!

Where was she sitting?

What are the handholds like (suitablee for a 7 year olds little pinkies?)

Does she feel secure in the boat? Is she hydrophobic or just frightened of being thrown in?

If you launched at Crosshouse you could nip up the dock to the Test estuary its a six not crawl for a couple of miles then you have a water ski area.

If you need a hand to launch give me a shout. I'd be happy to help if I amnot at Sea
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Old 27 May 2007, 17:45   #11
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Thanks for the advice everyone - good stuff.

I've tried keeping going for a little while when she's unhappy and it doesn't really work, so have had to slow down.

Both my kids have swimming lessons and are very confident in the water, so I don't think there's any inherent fear of water. They've both had a go in ringos in Greece on holiday and enjoyed it (which surprised me a bit!), so I think we'll get hold of some toys this year for extra entertainment. (They've already got wetsuits).

I let them drive a little bit, but good idea to let them try more.

TBH, I think the main thing is patience from me. I tend to get frustrated pottering along at 8 knots on a perfectly calm day, but maybe that's all we need to do for a few times to build up her confidence and familiarity with being on the water again. She's been happy when we've just motored slowly up the Itchen or Beaulieu rivers.

I'll also think ahead a bit more about picnics and lunch stops.

Cheers,

Gerry
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Old 28 May 2007, 03:33   #12
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Thanks for the advice everyone - good stuff.

I've tried keeping going for a little while when she's unhappy and it doesn't really work, so have had to slow down.

Both my kids have swimming lessons and are very confident in the water, so I don't think there's any inherent fear of water. They've both had a go in ringos in Greece on holiday and enjoyed it (which surprised me a bit!), so I think we'll get hold of some toys this year for extra entertainment. (They've already got wetsuits).

I let them drive a little bit, but good idea to let them try more.

TBH, I think the main thing is patience from me. I tend to get frustrated pottering along at 8 knots on a perfectly calm day, but maybe that's all we need to do for a few times to build up her confidence and familiarity with being on the water again. She's been happy when we've just motored slowly up the Itchen or Beaulieu rivers.

I'll also think ahead a bit more about picnics and lunch stops.

Cheers,

Gerry
Gerry - my little one - who is much younger than yours loves the "idea" of the boat and is quite happy if it is calm and we aren't going too fast. He doesn't like getting wet or the windchill at 20 knots! He seems to be happiest sitting between mummy and daddy (we have a stupid bench seat for driving) in the shelter of the console.

For short trips at low speed he is always happy enough - for longer trips we find he needs an incentive - we are going to see the seals, or for a picnic, or to play on the beach etc...

You said your girls don't like the transition from displacement to the plane - does the bow go sky high when you do this - if so I can understand the concern if they don't understand it. If by playing around with the trim you can keep the nose down and get on the plane still (perhaps not as good hole shot) - then they may be more settled.

Finally, can you hear them/they hear you at speed? I can't hear my son at all - so if they are trying to tell you something (like I'm scared, or freezing, or go faster!) then you will appear to be ignoring them...
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Old 29 May 2007, 05:27   #13
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Hi Gerry

I think we've all been there. We've been teaching my daughter to ski and last year we were about ready to give up. This year, however, we were successful. We spent the time when we were not skiing enthusing about how much fun it was.

Peer pressure can work but remember if the friend doesn't enjoy the rib this can bring on the kiss of death.

We found treats a really good way of encouraging her, this can be sweets or grapes, having a mini picnic on the boat when under way - food that is really fun and associates the whole trip as fun.

Make sure they are warm - we all think that children don't feel the cold but if they are already nervous, they get really cold very quickly and they don't enjoy it and things deteriorate really quickly.

Stick with it but take it down a notch and before you know it - I bet she'll love it. We have all this to go through when (if) we get our boat, but I'm currently looking to invest in some proper wet-weather gear - not so much for the rain, but more for a wind stopper and warmth. Also going to look into how we can make a little den.

Good luck.

Sarah
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Old 20 July 2007, 07:53   #14
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Happy little camper in a save phace

I was out last weekend with my 9 year old, late afternoon in winter, and he was coping, just, but complained a lot about cold ears, cold nose .... until this!

He loved it ... a death-eater with warm face and ears - no more complaints!

Thoroughly recommended.

PS I like it too, need another one or two.
PPS JK, pl feel free to copy to other thread!
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Old 20 July 2007, 08:37   #15
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(From previous thread, but I don't know how to reference another thread?!)
THe trip :
Yarmouth - Cowes


THen a big gin palace comes roaring down the solent.
So I
1. Tell everyone to hold on to something secure
2. Tell novice driver to turn into wake
3. Tell him to throttle back, 12 knots or so should be ok.

We hit the wake, steeper than I expected, but the boat rose over no problem, then slammed into the next 'wave' of the wake and when the tubes made contact with the near vertical water the boat lurched, and bounced back. 1 x child airborne!
She flew over my head, over the 'A' frame and landed about 10 ft behind us in the water.
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Old 20 July 2007, 08:55   #16
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Gerry

There is some great advice there.
I am very very lucky my 9 year love boats.
Was very nervous for her when I first introduced her to ribs about 3 years ago but she took to it like a duck to water, pardon the pun
She now "drives" everything from a small tender to my 9m and she has driven a 10m!

Am not trying to teach anyone to suck eggs but these are the kinda things that have worked for me.
Not only as a dad but as a youth worker for many years.

Your a dad and you will know this but she will sense and pick up on your frustrations.
"If you show fear they will attack"
IMHO you need to take a deep breath and ride with it.
Let them drive as much as you can, this is a big thing for all kids and gives them the "WOW" factor.
Even if you itching to take control resist.

Get them on a training course, RYA Level 1.

Like most have said the key is getting your little one involved.
Make her feel useful and a real part of the crew.
Getting her doing stuff around the boat when you are getting ready to go to sea etc.

All very much IMHO but hope it help even if just a little.

"what I hear I forget, what I see I remember, what I do I understand and enjoy"

All the very best with this.
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Old 20 July 2007, 10:02   #17
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Gerry, not much use for you but starting them young helps – ie baby onwards! That way it’s nothing is new. Sarah G is also right about keeping them warm and getting the right kit. Lots of food also helps – just keep feeding them chocolate. Finally the advice about getting them involved is also important, driving, mooring up etc. One thing I have also found is that those enormous, cumbersome lifejackets for kids don’t make the experience any easier. You can get auto-inflating LJs from 15kg onwards so get them in those asap.
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Old 20 July 2007, 11:00   #18
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Try not taking her out for a while she may feel left out if she keeps hearing what great fun we all had Does she like dolphins and things like that? tell her that you may see some, when and if the weather does eventually improve stop off frequently in quiet bays and beaches and let her explore and have her own fun, eventually she will realize that a rib is just cool
Don't force the fun of ribbing on her though, she must know its fun before she loses the fear.
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Old 20 July 2007, 14:22   #19
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yes, yes i know she has not got her hand on the throttle as she should, you try telling a 4 year old that already knows everything....................... women...lol..... and im the one wearing the kill cord...
Spot the candy floss bucket near the transom, this was last month coming back into Poole after dolphin spotting off of Swanage.... with a really old double skinned delta that we were doing a contract with, Tohatsu ---- pain the ass outboard with a mind of its own....!!
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Old 20 July 2007, 14:34   #20
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.

"what I hear I forget, what I see I remember, what I do I understand and enjoy"

In my line of work its,

'Monkey see, Monkey do'
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