This time in the mini series of Kayaking how-tos, Adidas-sponsored kayaker Jon Haylock takes us through the art of paddling.
Getting your paddling technique right is essential if you’re planning on going anywhere in a kayak. It’s almost as straight-forward as it seems, but Jon has a few key pointers to get you gliding through the water like a pro.
Top Tips for effective kayak paddling
- Smooth: Easy entry with the blade of the paddle.
- Spear: Use a solid blade plant in the water with a firm grip on the paddle.
- Recovery: Lifting the paddle out of the water at the end of the stroke needs to be smooth and crisp to avoid letting the paddle drag behind you.
- Pull Phase: It’s important that you pull steadily and smoothly right to the end of the stroke.
- Gears: Sea kayaking requires a series of paddling ‘gears’ to allow you to accelerate effectively starting with a slower comfortable motion.
- Faster: As you increase speed increase the stroke rate, leaning forward a bit more, pulling harder and driving through your legs more.
- Stroke Length: Keep the stroke length the same. Long, full strokes are the name of the game.