× Tips and techniques for getting the most out of surfskiing.

wave riding question

12 years 10 months ago #2879 by sru_tx
wave riding question was created by sru_tx
I've been watching surfski videos on the various sites (youtube, blip, vimeo) and have noticed something. Almost everyone, even the big names of the sport, will drag a paddle as an outrigger on one side while riding waves and big swell. Why? The simple answer is for balance, but I suspect the pros don't really worry about stability that much. The only other answer that comes to mind is trim and position on the wave. The paddle adds enough drag to keep the ski from outrunning the wave and ending up in front of the wave instead of on it.

So what's the real answer?

Thanks.
steve

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12 years 10 months ago #2883 by Shaun
Replied by Shaun on topic Re:wave riding question
I am going to go out on a limb and say that, while they don't really need the added stability, that is probably why they drag a paddle. Dragging a paddle isn't going to slow you down so much that you fall off the wave, so why not have the added stability if you can?

I guess I don't know what else they would do with their paddle, paddling would use energy that they are trying to save, and otherwise, they are going to be holding their paddle out of the water which takes energy also.

For me, I use a paddle as an outrigger so that I can somewhat favor one side over the other. This way, if I start to loose stability, I already have the paddle in the water in a bracing position and I can just add slight pressure to help keep balanced, instead of having the paddle farther away from a brace, and therefore loose my ballance more, and then have to do a harder brace to get myself back to a stable situation.

Perhaps someone smarter than me can chime in also, I am just guessing, and using my inferior experience.

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12 years 10 months ago - 12 years 10 months ago #2885 by garykroukamp
You've described it perfectly, Shaun

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12 years 10 months ago #2886 by Txski
Replied by Txski on topic Re:wave riding question
Seems like I find myself trying to use that dragging blade as a rudder or at least a pivot point to body english the ski on the wave. I know for sure I do it for stability as well and never thought about it but it is a good place to rest an idle paddle.

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12 years 10 months ago #2887 by nell
Replied by nell on topic Re:wave riding question
I'll add that paddle dragging will accomplish two other things. 1) It allows you to feel where the water surface is so that you are aware of a hole or trough opening up. About the most common reason I capsize is because I take an "air stroke" over a hole that I wasn't aware of. 2) In bigger seas, if you stop paddling it's easy to get one of the blades "caught" in a wave off to your side. If you drag one blade on the water a bit behind you, the other blade is in front and up high enough so that it keeps clear of the tops of waves.
Erik

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12 years 9 months ago #2890 by sru_tx
Replied by sru_tx on topic Re:wave riding question
Thanks for the input and insight everyone.

steve

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12 years 2 months ago #3608 by Tommy
Replied by Tommy on topic Re:wave riding question
I think that the experts are dragging the back surface of the paddle as the scoop side will suddenly grab. If they want drag, they may use the scoop side, but ask an expert.

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12 years 2 months ago #3610 by garykroukamp
Dragging the scoop side is not really an option. Will throw you in for sure.

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