Are you in the stander camp, or the sitter camp?
There are certain nautical debates for which there can no clear victor. The best anchor argument, or the longstanding monohull vs multihull feud, are just a couple that have pitted sailor against sailor for ages. One that is perhaps not as frequently discussed, but seems to be just as diametrically split, is the method for traveling in a dinghy. In other words, there is the sitter camp, and there is the stander camp.
Stander vs. Sitter: the four camps!
Using the example of a couple traveling in a dinghy, we’ve witnessed four distinct variations of passenger placement:
- Both people sitting. That would be us.
- Passenger sitting in front with driver standing behind.
- Passenger standing, with driver sitting behind.
- Both parties standing. Seemingly the highest skill level, and the funniest to look at!
How do the standers remain… standing? Although I have no experience, it seems as if they hold on to the painter, pulling back on it, and use a surfing type motion to remain balanced. It’s pretty impressive to watch actually!
Why do standers stand? From what I’ve heard, proponents of standing believe the ride to be drier. That is, they don’t get splashed as much. It seems to me though that for any given speed, the amount of water coming over the bow would remain the same, regardless of whether someone was sitting or standing. All that would change is what article(s) of clothing gets wet.
Both Rebecca and I are firmly entrenched in the sitter camp. So much so that we can’t help but shake our heads when we see people doing otherwise. As we made the long trip into Le Marin this morning, we passed between two dinghies, one of which had a stander on board, and yes, we took note. Standing seems silly to us, but standers must have their reasons.
What should you do? That’s 100% up to you. My only suggestion, and it’s a very strong one, is for the driver to always attach the kill switch to his/her person. While I’ve yet to witness anyone falling out of a dinghy who wasn’t severely intoxicated (you know who you are!), with such an increase in height of center of gravity, it seems obvious that the chance of falling out must be increased by standing. Whether sitting or standing, please drive safe!
Note: In the big center console dinghy that we used when chartering, I did always stand. The RIB was just not set up well to do otherwise. With a steering wheel to hold onto though, there was no surfing involved. Additionally, I always had the kill switch attached to me!
This entire post, with the exception of the admonition to wear your kill switch, is meant to be tongue in cheek. Personally, I couldn’t care less how you travel in your dinghy. If you are offended by any of this, please turn off your computer, and go outside to get some fresh air. I promise, you’ll feel better. 🙂
In other news…
Although it only shows up if you peruse the fitness category, or you subscribe to our site, Rebecca added another post this morning, this time citing the reasons why she hasn’t tried to fund our cruising kitty by teaching fitness classes. Check it out!