I was told today that surf ski guys set their wings short for rough water and longer for the flats? If this is correct, can someone explain the logic?
Heel and Pegpads™
Touring Kayak Paddles
Canoe / Kayak Anchors
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For upwind I tend to set it shorter|
Posted by: Kocho on Oct-07-12 2:36 PM (EST)
than for flat conditions; for downwing I make it a bit longer than for flat. Have not really thought about why, but it seems to work better for me this way. I can theorize that is because of the waves coming against me I need a shorter blade as they are higher/closer to me, where downwind I'm higher above the water riding on the top of waves. On flat I can have a higher hand position (so longer paddle shaft could work) compared to rough (where for stability I might keep my paddle/hands lower)...
high vs low angle stroke |
Posted by: abc on Oct-07-12 6:58 PM (EST)
higher turnover in rough and upwind|
Posted by: nickjc on Oct-08-12 12:40 PM (EST)
Longer for more power for catching runs going downwind. In chop you time your stroke with the face of the chop so a short paddle also makes that easier. Kind of like switch to big gear for downhill and small for uphill. Oscar is known for shortening his paddle for the last upwind section of Molokai. The angle of the stroke doesn't vary all that much except in severe cross wind it'll be a little lower to reduce the chance of getting flipped and in a sprint a little higher.
Posted by: radiomix on Oct-08-12 1:43 PM (EST)
Choppy water is the reason for shortening the wing, and really the only reason being it keeps me from dunking my hand. If the rise and fall of the boat us unpredictable I tend to miss the plant and dunk my hands.
Most Wings are Shorter Today|
Posted by: clydehedlund on Oct-11-12 2:40 AM (EST)
Because the cockpit is deeper. In the past, when seats were higher, the paddle lengths were longer. For most paddlers, it wouldn't make a difference, so paddle with what's comfortable length for you. Unless you're racing downwind and every ride counts. So in order to not miss a ride trying to connect with other waves, you got to pick up the cadence in order to catapult ahead of the competition. A shorter paddle allows me to boost my cadence from 60 spm to 80+ real fast.
Quite a Variation|
Posted by: gjf12 on Oct-11-12 6:43 PM (EST)
So you have used wings varying from 198 to 222. Can you maintain good stroke geometry at these extreme differences in length? If you can 'catapult' ahead with a short length, why not use shorter in flat water sprints also?
Yes You Can|
Posted by: clydehedlund on Oct-11-12 9:22 PM (EST)
But it will take practice in order for your brain to send the right signals to all your paddling muscles, so you'll feel comfortable again paddling with various paddles and finding the "sweet spot" for each.