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Kayak Paddles - Recreational

Recreational Canoe Paddle
  Kayak Paddles for Recreational use

Devon Recreational Kayak Paddle
How to choose a Paddle
For the recreational paddler finding the right kayak paddle is fairly straightforward. A simple pole with a flat blade is usually sufficient. However there is a wide range of paddles and it may take so searching to find the paddle that is right for you.

There are three main points that you should consider, that may help determine which type of paddle could be right for you:

  1. The type of paddling you be doing, for recreational paddling you can go for a balanced paddle.
  2. Your height and body strength. Taller paddlers need longer paddles simply as they are further from the water, however shorter paddlers can use the lower centre of gravity to use broader blades.
  3. Finally the size of your kayak. Taller and wider kayak and those that sit higher in the water will more often than not need longer paddles to reach the water effectively.

Once you have considered these three main points you can then consider the the three main differences in paddle characteristics. These are as follows:

  • Blade shape and length.
  • Shaft shape and length.
  • What the paddle is made of
Advantages of Different Materials

As with most things, it is a matter of cost vs performance when choosing a paddle.
Cheaper paddles are normally robust but lack performance, while normally only the best and most expensive paddles are both lightweight and durable.

In terms of performance the best paddle to have is a stiff blade with a flexible shaft. This ensures that you get maximum propulsion for the efforts you put in. Aluminium shafts have a similar flex as a glass shaft but will bend under less pressure. Glass shafts can cope with greater amounts of stress, are lighter but inevitably more expensive.

For more information on the best paddle for your budget please contact us at AS Watersports and we will be happy to help.

Paddle Length
There are only general guides to choosing the length of your paddles and much of this will be determined buy your own personal preference. Normally paddle length is a product of your height and the style of paddling that you normally do.

Touring Kayakers use longer paddles due to the fact that they use longer boats. A longer paddle would also be better suited for open canoeing.
Often, a sit-on-top kayaker will need a longer paddle. A long paddle may provide the paddler with more power, but will also create more resistance.

General Purpose Kayakers should use a medium sized paddle to cope with the variant in paddling.

White Water Kayakers use shorter boats so shorter paddles seem to work best.

Short paddles allow a greater stroke rate, enabling greater acceleration strokes, as it takes less time to complete a stroke which makes it ideal for white water kayaking.

Whitewater kayakers prefer shorter paddles for their increased manoeuvrability,
speed and strength.

Paddle Shape

Kayaking paddle blades can be long, short, wide, narrow, feathered, unfeathered, symmetrical, asymmetrical, spooned or dihedral.

Each shape has it own individual benefits.

A wide blade with a larger surface area can provide greater acceleration but will also create more resistance in the water. This may be an important point to consider, particularly if you are an in a infrequent paddler, as it takes much more effort to use s large bladed paddle than a smaller one.

Touring is more about endurance than speed, so a long, narrow blade will take more strokes through the water but the paddler will be much less tired.

Paddle blades can be either symmetrical of asymmetrical. Normally, touring paddles are long, narrow and symmetrical. Many paddlers find an asymmetrical paddle can help reduce the twisting on the paddle shaft while stroking in the water, as it helps even the amount of water on each side of the submerged paddle.

While most paddle shafts are straight, there are several bent-shaft paddles that may help to increase the paddler’s comfort as well as providing a stronger, more effective stroke.

For expert information on choosing the right paddle for you please contact AS Watersports.

Devon Kayak Paddle
Kayak Paddles Kayak Paddles Home
Information on the entire range of paddles A S Watersports has to offer.
Kayak Paddles Recreational Recreational Kayak Paddles

Kayak paddles suitable for general and recreational kayaking use.

Kayak Paddles Touring Touring Kayak Paddles
Lightweight, comfortable kayak paddles designed to be used all day long.
Kayak Paddles White Water White Water Kayak Paddles
Strong, short kayak paddles designed for the punishment of rough water.
Kayak Paddles White Water Stand Up Paddles
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