The stroke

The stoke is made up of the following elements.

#1 Ready Position - The foundation

  • Sit up straight.
  • Plant your feet on the floor of the boat. Both feet can be forward or you can have one foot forward and the other tucked under the seat. Most important is you have a solid connection with the boat.
  • Make sure your hips are hard up against the gunwhale and you are leaning slightly outside of the boat. As you hinge forward at the waist you rotate your outside hip and shoulder so your torso is facing into the boat.
  • Raise your paddle forward with straight arms. Elbows shouldn't be locked and a slight bend in the arms is okay.
  • Bottom arm should be parallel to the water surface and top arm held high and outside the gunwhale of the boat .
  • Your paddle will reach near the knees of the person in front of you.
  • The shape of your body, arms and the paddle will form the shape of a capital A.


#2 Body weight and positioning on the seat

  • Keep your weight outside the boat throughout the whole stroke.
  • An easy way to check your positioning is you should be able to comfortably see the outside of the boat and its colour while paddling. Of course, during paddling make sure to look up at your team and the strokes for timing.

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