How To Paddle Your SUP

Jimmy Blakeney | How To

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How To Paddle Your SUP

How to Paddle Your Paddle Board

Insert the paddle into the water as far forward as possible and bury the paddle into the water. Rather than pulling you paddle through the water, think about pulling past your paddle. Keep your bottom arm straight and relatively still. Pull your top arm toward your body to extend the paddle forward. Rotate your top shoulder forward and extend your reach. To stay in a straight line, take a few strokes on one side then switch to a few strokes on the other

How to Turn Your Paddle Board

To turn left, place the paddle in the water on the right side. At the same time, turn your torso to the left side. Keep a low stance and pull to the right, towards the tail with the paddle, while twisting and leaning to the left with your torso. You’ll feel the board shift to the left quickly. To turn right, place the paddle near the tail and pull toward the nose while shifting your torso to the right — this will spin your board’s nose to the right hand side — the more you bend your knees, the easier it will be to turn the board.

    How to Stop Your Paddle Board

    There is two basic techniques to stop your paddle board. The sweep stroke to turn ourselves which will slow us down and stop. The second one is more advance were we step back on the tail.

    Sweep Stoke

    Place your paddle at the tail and push the paddle blade away from the tail. That will turn your board and it will stop you. It is an easy way to stop your board and will turn your sideways. It is also a really nice way to get off your board.

    Tail Stop

    More advanced technique where you step back on the tail of the board. This will make the board stop on a dime. It is a great way to stop the board when you are trying to prevent yourself from hitting something. This technique requires a little more of an advance skill set. 

    How to Pivot Turn Your Paddle Board

    Start by standing in your normal stance by the carry handle and then take a step back. In order to step back stand your paddle vertically on the board and push into your paddle to take a step back. When you get back to the tail you want to have your dominate foot forward closing to the center line of the board but slightly off from the center line of the board. Then you back foot should have the heel across the center line but slightly off to the other rail. Once in this position you press you should be able to press into the back foot and lift up the nose or press into the front foot and lower the nose. There is a sweet spot where you neutralize the fin and the nose is lifted up. Once in this position you paddle on one side to spin and there you have the pivot turn. 

    How to Feather Your Paddle Board

    Feathering your paddle blade is a technique required to paddle without ever taking your paddle out of the water. It really helps your skill development for using your paddle. Feathering is when you are at the end of your stroke and you rotate your paddle blade so that it slices through the water back to the nose for the next stroke. If you set down on your board you can play with your paddle blade and get comfortable with that blade underwater. 

    How to SUP Faster Than Your Friends

    You may not be looking to be a professional paddle board racing but you probably want to paddle faster than you friends. 

    Here are a few key tips:

    • The blade goes fully in the water before you start to pull. It's important because you get the full power and get a lot more contact with the water to apply pressure.
    • You want the paddle shaft to be vertical. If the paddle shaft is vertical we're pulling alongside the board and we know we're propelling ourselves forward instead of pushing ourselves sideways. 
    • We want to rotate our hips and shoulder. When we do this we plant forward at the nose and when we pull back we take the blade of at your foot. This allows us to have a much for efficient stroke. 

    To ensure you have the best time on your SUP use our top paddle boarding tips to avoid making the common SUP mistakes:

    • DO: Always hold the paddle with one hand on the top of the handle and the other on the shaft.
    • DON’T: hold the paddle like a broomstick, with both hands on the shaft. DO: Keep your feet parallel, spread shoulder width apart, and your toes pointed toward the nose.
    • DON’T: Get in a surf stance - everyone wants to, but that makes paddling on the flat water ten times harder. Plus, you will fall. Save your surf stance for the surf.
    • DO: Make sure your grip on the paddle is shoulder width apart — short grips will give you a powerless stroke.
    • DON’T: Only use your arms - you’ll get tired faster and not paddle efficiently. Let your big back muscles do the brunt of the work.
    • DO: Dip the blade fully into the water and take a long stroke, letting your large back muscles do the work.

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