Friday, January 15, 2010

Ask Randall: Oversteering, Paddling on One Side

Hey Randall:

When I paddle, all external factors considered and neutralized (wind, currents, chop) it seems that I track well paddling on my right and not well on my left. So at the end of every session, my right side is dead and left side is still very fresh since my strokes on the left turn me so fast I barely get any in before I'm right side stroking again.
Any ideas? Thanks for your time.

Nick, from Lake Washington Seattle
Your answer in a nutshell is asymmetry. You're doing something on one side that you're not on the other. Here are some SUP paddling tips:
  • When stroking on the left side, try bending your knee on the left a little more and keep weight on the heel and toes.
  • At the same time, on your right foot put weight only on the toes.
  • You may not be reaching as far forward (out toward the nose)on the left side. Try reaching a few inches farther forward and finishing the stroke sooner, de-power before the blade gets alongside your feet.
Whatever you're doing on the right side is good. Analyze it and do the same on the left. Most paddlers would love to be able to stay on one side for more strokes instead of switching all the time. Personally I like to do about ten per side before switching.

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