Paddle usage after paddle up

I have been progressing with my downwinding and never really made good use of the paddle after initial paddle up.

I know some say not to use it and even go so far as putting it on their back.

I’m a bit conflicted, should I try to get better at using the paddle to get out of holes or any other usage? Currently I am finding I can generally see ahead of time when I’m going into a bad spot and try to avoid it or get higher on the mast/increase speed in preparation.

I’m also considering strapping it to my back as I think Kalama does… Not sure exactly how best to actually do that and avoid possible board damaged during falls though.

Anyone have any thoughts?

To strap it to your back they’re using bike inner tubes cut up and attached to the paddle.

Paddle pumping is useful to build speed. Make sure you’re paddled nose to toes so you don’t pull back to far and hit your paddle.

1 Like

I think Eric mentioned this on a podcast a year or more back, but I’ve found I’m liking the paddle in-hand while downwind surfing and focusing on turns and figure 8’s, etc. I notice that keeping both my hands low (with normal paddle grip on paddle), and using the paddle blade, at times, as a tactile reference to water surface allows me to carve harder (I’m still no expert, mind you), trust the foil, and keep center of gravity lower. Of course, I use it for propulsion paddle/pump when needed to generate speed…

1 Like

I think using the paddle as a tool is essential. The paddle pump is super important if you get into a hole that you can’t purely pump out of because you’re so close to stall speed there’s no “push back”. The paddle then helps pull you forward.

Sometimes I’m fully off foil but still gliding very quick and you can just immediately paddle it back up without coming to rest.

Yeah, that does make sense to me. I have continued though to not use it. I’m to a point that it is actually a liability to use as I’m just not use to it and not comfortable re-engaging paddling. I think I’m going to need to focus on usage so when I do get stuck in a hole I have the ability to use it if needed.I also see how it could be helpful in pushing forward over swell where it may be more efficient at getting speed and if one gets low on the mast going over a bump.

That being said I’m wanting to try on the back to see if that helps my pumping. Anyone have a picture of the bike inner-tube setup. Not exactly sure how to ideally do that.

I’ve seen videos of lafoiler pumping his dw sup, he’s holding the paddle and his hands don’t move at all. Meaning a good pump means almost no flapping your arms up and down. Me personally I’m still a flapper, but if I had a paddle in my hand it would prob help me stop flapping.

In tricky sections it really helps to have the paddle in hand ready to go, sometimes I find myself flapping to get it back in position.

Going really slow on foil is nice with the paddle in hand waiting for a bump to form, paddling helps amazingly well at keeping you just off stall speed. Better than pumping. I have improved a lot at this. If I touchdown I can paddle off the water instead of pumping and it works almost better on some bumps.

Once you’re in the groove then putting it on your back might be worthwhile, what I did with the inner tube was just cut it (remove the valve section) and knot it near the handle and near the blade, nothing to it I don’t think. I removed it and have yet to miss it because I’m using the paddle a fair bit still, honestly don’t think it’s relevant to most of us?

When you jump up (the most efficient way) your arms go back. When you lift your legs to pump (like an Ollie / least efficient way) your arms come forward with a big swing. There’s times you have to do it both ways, but you have to jump more than lift to keep your heart from exploding. :grimacing::joy:

I thought you had to have some sort of camera affixed to your paddle so when you popped up you could film yourself so then we could watch endless videos of people going down wind on instagram.