A ‘Hand of God’ Rescue is probably one of the most useful and important rescue skills that a kayaker can have in their tool box, and when used correctly can save a life. It is the process of re-righting a capsized kayaker who is still in their boat (and possibly unconscious). I even use this rescue technique on beginners when they are learning to paddle.
Must be confident enough to assess the situation and decide if performing a rescue will put you in danger.
Must be confident in paddling without a paddle and be able to hand roll.
Come up alongside the paddler in need of help.
Whichever hand is closer to the person you are assisting is going to reach all the way across their boat and try to find a spot on their cockpit rim to securely grab on to.
Your other hand will be placed on the near side of their kayak and will be pushing down.
Commit your body to reaching as far onto/over their kayak as possible. This will maximize leverage in a second.
Keeping the arm that is locked onto the cockpit rim straight and your back straight, start to lean back. Keeping your arm and back straight will maximize leverage.
Simultaneously push down with the other hand.
When the kayak is half way rolled up, move the hand that was pushing and lock it onto the cockpit rim beside your other hand to complete the upright.
Hold onto their kayak once they are upright to keep you both stable.