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kayaking technique

waveform for ajaaq tukermumiaq; survey by Harvey Golden


Qajaq USA is pleased to bring you the following collection of audio files (.WAV) of West Greenland kayak and kayak-related terms. Click on a Greenlandic word in the left-hand column and hear it spoken by Maligiaq Padilla, the current Greenland National Kayaking Champion. This audio glossary was a collaborative effort between Maligiaq Padilla, Vernon Doucette and Greg Stamer. The audio was recorded in Sisimiut Greenland, July 2002. We have additional audio of the names of all of the championship Greenlandic rolling maneuvers on the competition rolling list.

Qajaq USA hopes that you will find this to be a very useful resource!


Glossary Image Map

Click on the image above to access an image map that lets you click on a kayak term to hear it spoken.

West Greenland Kayak Related Terms


Ajaaq Cross Beam (deck beam).
Ajaaq Seeqqortarfik Cross Beam (deck beam). Knee Support
(Ajaaq) Tukerumiaq Cross Beam (deck beam). Foot Support
(Ajaaq) Isserfik Cross Beam (deck beam)."Back" Support (deck beam immediately   behind cockpit coaming).
Akuilisaq Short spray skirt. Also called tuiitsoq in some districts. It is oftenleft open at the top, and held up by suspenders. Intended for calm  conditions during the warmer months.
Apummaq Gunwale; one of two longitudinal frame members and the primary structural component of a Greenland skin-on-frame kayak. The plural form (gunwales) is apummat.
Aquut Steering fin, or skeg. These are often lashed into place.
Asagiikkut Harpoon support.
Asaloq Line Rack.
Avataq Hunting Float attached to end of harpoon line. Provides drag to harpooned animals and may prevent their sinking if dead.
Kujaaq Keelson.
Masik Masik. A curved deck beam, often in the range of 6-7cm wide, that supports the front of the cockpit coaming.
Mulik Paddle blade.
Niutaaq Stem and stern profile.
Norsaq Throwing board for launching harpoons and darts. Also shaped to enable it to be useful for rolling.
Paaq Cockpit coaming.
Paatit Paddle.
Pukkoq Mortice.
Qajaq Kayak. Only a Greenlandic kayak is given this designation. Other kayaks (e.g. fiberglass sport kayaks) are often called qajariaq, meaning "like a qajaq". The plural form (kayaks) is qaannat.
Qoorutit Lashings.
Siaaneq Side stringer.
Taalutaq Shooting Screen. A white screen deployed from the front of the kayak, used after the introduction of firearms, to hide the body of the kayaker and make the kayak appear as a block of ice to a seal.
Taqqap_Qoorutaa Tightener (slider) for deck lines. Taqqat is the term for deck lines (plural).
Taqqap_Taqqaasaq Foreward (foredeck) deck line.
(Taqqaq) Qasungasoq Aft deck line.
Taqqat Deck lines or cross straps.
Tasiaq Midpiece (loom) of paddle.
Tippik Rib (kayak).
Tuilik Full kayak jacket.
Tunersuk Deck stringer.
Tuunnaa Join as in joinery. (e.g. tunnaq is the "join" at the stem and stern)
Tuunnap Kikiai Trunnel (wooden peg) used to hold the gunwales together fore and aft.
Usuusappuua Bone knob at extreme end(s) of kayak.
Usuusaq End piece (stem or stern).