SUP Paddling Techniques 101 per David Kalama

Paddle techniques at Epic Boardsports

Season is upon us here on the right coast. Many people have been in the shop lately looking at boards, buying boards, and indirectly asking about paddling technique by asking how do they keep their board going straight. Now is the time to dig deeper into this topic, before you develop too many bad habits. Most people don’t realize how technical paddling is. There are many subtleties happening that we take for granted when watching professionals like David Kalama perform their craft with ease. Good paddling technique is transferable to all aspects of SUP, whether you’re paddleboarding Orlando lakes, Cocoa Beach rivers, SUP surfing in the Atlantic, or racing flatwater, proper technique will make your experience more enjoyable , and efficient. I had someone come into the shop this week asking about which fin he should buy to help his board to go straighter. Can certain fins help your board track better? Sure, but all this person needed was a little help with paddling technique, so I showed him a few things, pointed him to David Kalama’s articles, and saved him about $80. Yeah, lost a sale, but hopefully gained a customer.

So, here are the links to David Kalama’s excellent articles on breaking down paddling technique. Btw, check out the rest of his website. Many more articles on all things SUP. Read them, absorb them, try out what he suggests in the water, but a word of caution, take it in small chunks, don’t try to put it all together right after reading the articles. Practice each technique detail independently, and with much time and practice, it will all flow without you even thinking about it, and then you can really start to work on fine tuning each step :)

Have fun with it, and if you like, come on into the shop to discuss technique further.


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