6 tips on how to paddle straight

6 tips on how to paddle straight

Sometimes just paddling straight seems like such a chore!

Although wind and water conditions can play a part in how straight you go, there are other factors within your technique that play a huge impact on your course.

Don’t work harder than you have to! A few simple changes could drastically improve your SUP experience. Here’s a few tips to keeping you “in line” on your next paddleboard adventure:

HOW TO PADDLE STRAIGHT ON A SUP BOARD

1) BALANCE IS KEY
Make sure you have your weight distributed evenly through your feet as much as possible. In your hip rotation, if you heavily press down on either foot, you may distort your path to one side or another.

2) KEEP YOUR EYES ON THE HORIZON
As a beginner you may feel the need to look down at your feet to make sure you’re balanced correctly. It’s instinctual. However, this causes you to rock back on your feet and become unbalanced. Keeping your eyes fixed on a point on the horizon will help steady you and keep your board from veering.

3) KEEP THE PADDLE STROKE STRAIGHT
Make sure you are moving the paddle in a straight line from the catch phase of your stroke through the exit. You may be inclined to paddle along the curvature of your board, but do not paddle the shape of your board's rail.

4) SQUARE YOUR BLADE
Make sure your blade angle is square in the catch and throughout the power phase. Angling the blade in either direction can create yaw. A yaw motion is a side to side movement of the nose.

5) KEEP YOUR PADDLE SHAFT VERTICAL
Keep your paddle shaft vertical with the top hand right outside the rail of the board. Your shoulders should be stacked, and the top hand over the bottom hand.

6) TRY USING A BIG FIN
If you try the above mentioned techniques and are still struggling to paddle straight, you may need a larger fin. However, most of the time veering off line is due to the wrong technique rather than the wrong gear.

Written by YOLO Team Rider: Leah Seacrest

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