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Kayak Draw Stroke w/ in-water Recovery

Sometimes you're going to want to go sideways in your kayak, and one way of doing that is a Draw Stroke with an in-water recovery.

 

It starts by rotating your torso, both hands over the water, both blades over the water facing where you want to go. The catch is with the blade off your hip sliding the boat towards the paddle. The recovery is rotating the paddle and slicing it straight away to draw, stop, slice straight away. So, I'm slicing to where there's no resistance on the paddle. Loose fingers on the top hand. Draw stroke in-water recovery.

Draw strokes are what we use to pull the kayak sideways. The keys to all the draw strokes are to rotate your torso so that you are facing your work. The draw strokes with the in-water and out of water recovery mean that you would be rotated and then for the catch position, have the paddle blade straight off your hip with the blade straight square coming back towards your hip and the side of the kayak. The propulsion phase is to pull that working blade towards the boat but really you want to think about sliding your hip and the boat over towards that working blade.

The top hand, which is the shaft hand, is held loosely. If you grip that too tightly you can cause yourself to capsize. So a loose grip with a top hand, the top hand stays still. It's a fulcrum and the paddle shift is a lever. So, the fulcrum stays still and the lever and blade move the kayak to the side.


This has been Mike Aronoff with Canoe Kayak and Paddle Company (CKAPCO). I hope we'll be seeing you on the water!


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