Mastering the Paddleboard Forward Stroke
Become more efficient, have more fun and get that full body workout on your paddleboard with these tips on the forward paddle stroke:
1.) Stance- position your feet in a relaxed stance slightly narrower than your shoulders, one foot on each side of the carrying handle. Paddleboarding can be a great workout for your feet because all those little muscles are firing for balance and power. Knees should be slightly bent and hips loose to allow for a positive forward reach and rotation. Hold your paddle slightly wider than shoulder width, elbows slightly flexed, yet keep your arms in a generally fixed position; it is the torso that does the work.
2.) Reach- this is key…..all of your forward paddling power is generated from the catch to the finish of your stroke. Reach as far forward as you can by bending forward at your hips, keep paddle vertical with upper hand in front of your face, blade should exit at your feet.
3.) Rotate, an efficient paddle stroke incorporates the larger muscle groups of your core, these muscles are much stronger than your arms. When you reach forward, rotate your upper body at the same time, unwind your torso throughout your stroke. You will feel like you are doing crunches….this is why SUPing is such a great workout!
4.) Exit, as mentioned earlier, it is essential to end your stroke at your feet. An efficient paddle stroke must end at your feet, if not, you will be creating a lot of drag, slowing you down. Hint: If your upper hand and arm drop below your face, your stoke is too long.
We hope you enjoy getting out on the water as much as we do, feel free to contact us with any questions!