In a bright sunny morning you, water body and kayak is a perfect combo. The beauty of surrounding along with the silent valley and soft breeze isn’t it the magic unfolds. Well, kayak boating is flying towards the epitome of popularity and why it shouldn’t be after all it is one hell of a sport that comes in the budget and with lesser risk. Unless you go beyond the limits. There are some basic steps to master on to efficiently paddle the kayak. People often miss those basic guidelines resulting in facing problems in water.
It is advisable to learn these steps in calm water bodies where you are safe.
Here is the following step to know how to paddle a kayak:
1. Hold your paddle:
Holding the paddle correctly and having a correct size paddle is important as it is the key to efficient and fatigue-less strokes. There are four steps through which you can determine if your paddles’ holding is right or not.
- A piece of complete knowledge about your paddles:
- 1. Check if the blades are parallel. If you are having a fathered paddle then search for the push button which lies in the centre of the shaft. Click the button to rotate the shaft’s halves till the blades are parallel.
- 2. You can learn to paddle both with the symmetrical and unsymmetrical blades. Have a close look which one you have.
- 3. Having a curved blade needs your attention while you hold it. This kind of curved blades is useful in powerful strokes.
- The orientation of your blades:
- 1. Make sure that the curved sides of the blades are facing in your way when you hold it.
- 2. The shorter sides of the blades must be on the bottom.
- Holding the shaft:
- 1. Adjust the grip in such a way that your elbows make a 90-degree angle.
- 2. This will make a paddlers box, the shape will be formed by your chest, arms, and the shaft. The movement of your torso will depend on it.
- Don’t have a tight grip:
The little pressure you will give to your hand the less fatigue your hand will be.
2. Forward strokes:
It is the most basic stroke and you will spare almost all the time doing it. This stoke required not only arms power but also the strength of your torso.
- 1. Hold the shaft and drown one side of the blade completely into the water on one side of your feet.
- 2. Move your body the way you are moving the blade behind you. Your body must follow the blade that is inside the water.
- 3. Once your hand goes just behind your hip take out the blade from the water.
- 4. Repeat the same process with the other side of your shaft.
- 5. Keep in mind the clear image of the paddler’s box; it helps in maintaining the posture as well as in forwarding strokes.
- 6. Try to use the strong core to do strokes and not the weak one. Thus the tendency of getting injury will be lesser.
- 7. The blades must be vertical so that you can move faster and straighter.
3. Backward strokes:
With the help of this stoke, you will get two advantage. The first one is to give a break to your kayak and the next is to get moving if you stop anyhow. The backward stoke is completely opposite of the forward strokes.
- 1. Move your torso and drown the one side of the blade near to your hip.
- 2. Move your body the way blade moves towards the front.
- 3. Once the blade is even along with your feet take out the blade from the water.
- 4. Repeat the process with the other side of the blade.
4. Sweep strokes:
Continues forward strokes on a particular direction will eventually turn your boat into the opposite side. That is a hassle; if your intention is to turn the boat then go for the sweep strokes. It is the better way of turning the boat.
- 1. You need to stretch your arms in front and drown the blade into the water nearer to your feet then start to sweep. The method is to be applied on the side opposite to the turning direction.
- 2. You need to apply a good amount of force to make a bigger arc. The larger the strokes the much easier to turn.
- 3. After the blades reach the back of your cockpit. Cut the stroke by taking the blades out.
- 4. This will help you slow down and give your kayak a sharp turn. You may also repeat stoke otherwise continue the forward strokes.
- 5. Try to have a wider sweep. Imagine that you are counting a clock and you wish to reach all the digit.
5. Draw Strokes:
It is needed when you try to get close to either the dock or of another boat.
- 1. To make the paddle blade horizontal rotate the blades.
- 2. Stretch the shaft in such a way that the blade touches the water which is nearly two feet away sideways from your boat.
- 3. The blades must be pulled straight near you and the tips of it must be drowned in water.
- 4. Pull the blades with force but it should not hit your kayak. That may ruin your balance.
- 5. Draw strokes need to be repeated more than 2 times. It is you who going to be deciding how many strokes you need.
- 6. By any mistake, if the shaft hits your kayak, do not pull the paddle out of the water. Let go your upper hand and let loose your body. As the paddle goes away from the kayak, start your venture again.
With the given guidelines you would be able to drift your kayak to the position you wish to while checking your sitting position as well as arm, body movements. Due to the strong wind, you may not be able to hold your position in such cases does paddle in the opposite direction. However, if you are near to shore with the help of rod or pin you will be able to maintain your position. Last but not least the safety should be your priority and do not compromise. Before going out in the water check your kayak thoroughly not to end up in misery.