Wing paddle worth it?

2 years 3 weeks ago #30669 by hailstreak
I have been having a blast paddling my Epic V7 for the past few months after many years of sea kayaking. I love the increase in speed and distance the ski has afforded me, and because my main goal for paddling is fitness, I feel that the ski suits my purpose extremely well.

I'm wondering if it is worth changing to a wing paddle. It seems that everyone paddling a surf ski uses a wing paddle, and I have heard a lot about the benefits of wing paddles. I still use my Werner carbon fiber touring paddle, which feels really good to me. My forward stroke has gotten better since I got my surf ski, and I am happy with the speed and power I get from the Werner.

How much more speed can I get out of a wing? Honestly, if it is just a marginal increase, I'd rather not drop hundreds of dollars on a new paddle. But I hear that a wing paddle can also improve my stroke. Is it worth trying?

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30671 by LakeMan
Replied by LakeMan on topic Wing paddle worth it?
Yes a wing paddle makes a difference but is it worth it? Depends on your reasons for paddling. If you paddle the V7 just as you would a sea kayak, just to enjoy nature and cruise around I'd say you probably don't need one but if you are like me and paddle for exercise and speed then I woukd say get a wing. I picked one up on Amazon for $150 USD on sale and it works great. Christmas is tmw so send Santa a text.
How much speed you gain depends on many factors that I'm sure someone else here can explain.

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - Winston Churchill

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30673 by Fath2o
Replied by Fath2o on topic Wing paddle worth it?
It sounds like your Werner is working fine for you. That being said a "forgiving" wing blade can be a nice upgrade. A wing blade does demand a better stroke technique. I was fortunate to find a nice one on craigslist for $25.00. (A $300.00 + paddle.) I like the RPC3 small wing but unfortunately, the price has doubled since I bought one. Still a good price.

www.rpc3.com/kayakpaddles/small-wing-paddle

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30674 by MCImes
Replied by MCImes on topic Wing paddle worth it?
I highly recommend a wing paddle. Though a nice touring paddle will suffice, the stroke of the wing is much more suited to a ski, and personally I think the wing stroke engages the core more and results in a better work out. (Plus, if everyone in the sport uses it, they must do it for a reason)

I have this one. Its forgiving, cheap, and pretty good for the $. Its on sale for $175 shipped for 4 more days. That's about as cheap as you can pick up a new paddle.
www.aliexpress.com/item/carbon-kayak-pad...e-bag/582942338.html

You probably dont need to go straight to a $500 premium paddle, but I think you will see improvement with an entry level wing.

Make sure to watch lots of technique videos if you're not familiar with a wing. I still find little nuacnes to correct after a couple years of paddling.
Here is my favorite one of non-instructional video:


and here is a whole thread about stroke:
www.surfski.info/forum/18-training/18983...nique-resources.html

Currently - Swordfish S in Southern California's ocean waters
Past Boats: Epic V10 g0, Stellar SR g1, Fenn XT g1
"When you've done something right, they wont know you've done anything at all"

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30676 by Newbflat
Replied by Newbflat on topic Wing paddle worth it?
If your main goal is fitness then most definitely a wing paddle would be beneficial. If used correctly it will help you engage your core muscles and legs better. Has more bite on the water when you need it and is far more forgiving on a low brace when surfing in a downwind. The only place it’s not petter than a non wing is any stroke that changes the trailing edge of the paddle to the leading edge. So sculling is a no go for the most part. I came to Surfskis and wing paddles from a whitewater and sea kayaking back ground and was at first skeptical about using one. I decided to jump in and never looked back. The only place I would use flat paddles now are whitewater kayaking, rock gardening in a sea kayak and playing in the surf. I used a wing exclusively for 3 years and decided to try my old Warner touring paddle for a change... WOW!... so unstable in a skinny ski I nearly fell in, mushy, vague and powerless, and the flutter.. good lord the flutter.

Getting a wing will not automatically make you faster. But it will help you develop better technique, access more appropriate paddling muscles and be more powerful in the water once you learn to tap into the paddles potential with new found efficiently and fitness. Definitely seek out some periodic coaching. Wings are weird to try and teach yourself correct technique. The sooner you get someone who knows what they’re doing to help you not develop bad habits the better. Best to buy one and take a class right away or find someone who knows actually knows something to give you a wings 101. It’s easy to have a shitty wing stroke, most people do .... get coaching.

If you are at all serious about fitness paddling, racing or downwind paddling ... get a wing.

FENN Bluefin S
FENN Swordfish S carbon hybrid
Lot and lots of DK rudders.


Had:
Stellar SEL excel (gen 2)
Stellar SR excel (gen2)
Stellar S18s g1 (excel)
Epic V10 Double (performance)
Stellar SR (gen 1)
V10 sport (gen 2)
V10 (Gen 2)
Beater SEL (gen 1)

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30677 by Boof Head
Replied by Boof Head on topic Wing paddle worth it?
I would also add that a good technique with a wing minimises tendonititis issues. It has for me.

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30682 by hailstreak
Replied by hailstreak on topic Wing paddle worth it?
Thanks everyone for the excellent info and advice. It sounds like I should definitely look into getting a wing.

What length should I look for? I am 6'5" and the Epic paddle wizard suggests 215cm. Also, what makes a wing paddle "forgiving?"

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30685 by Newbflat
Replied by Newbflat on topic Wing paddle worth it?
IMHO...Your basic Epic small mid in 210-220 or Mid in the same length if you are strong would be a good choice. They are a good predictable well behaved and forgiving paddle. It does everything well without being excellent in any one catagory or have any real bad habbets. This not a complaints, on the contrary, it’s a good thing for a beginner and expert alike. Various paddle emphasize different parts of the stroke and are more or less oriented twords specific discipline like sprinting. For ski fitness paddling and downwinding it’s hard to go wrong with an Epic. Some people gravitate to designs that work for them a little better when the understand what they want. This takes time, technique and experience to decide what’s right for you. I moved to a Jantex Gamma Rio and am happy, but it took me years to understand what I was looking for. I still use my Epic small mid on longer flatter paddles though. In the mean time and maybe forever, it’s hard to go wrong with an Epic wing as just a solid all around paddle, and a good paddle to learn with.

FENN Bluefin S
FENN Swordfish S carbon hybrid
Lot and lots of DK rudders.


Had:
Stellar SEL excel (gen 2)
Stellar SR excel (gen2)
Stellar S18s g1 (excel)
Epic V10 Double (performance)
Stellar SR (gen 1)
V10 sport (gen 2)
V10 (Gen 2)
Beater SEL (gen 1)

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2 years 3 weeks ago - 2 years 3 weeks ago #30686 by MCImes
Replied by MCImes on topic Wing paddle worth it?
As newb says, the epic small mid wing is hard to beat for an all around paddle and first paddle

Twist in the blade of a paddle makes it more stroke specific and technical, thus more difficult to properly power. A straight paddle is probably best to learn with and most forgiving. I have both a twisted and straight blade paddle and probably slightly prefer the epic small mid clone (with no twist). The Think paddle twist adds an element of bite and demands more attention to form.

Glad I have both, but if I could have only 1 it's the epic small. It does all things reasonably well

Currently - Swordfish S in Southern California's ocean waters
Past Boats: Epic V10 g0, Stellar SR g1, Fenn XT g1
"When you've done something right, they wont know you've done anything at all"

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30687 by TaffyMick
Replied by TaffyMick on topic Wing paddle worth it?
My first wing paddle was an Epic mid-wing. Still have it in my paddle bag as and emergency spare. The Epic mid-wing is arguably the best wing blade to start out on.

In recent years I have graduated to Jantex Gamma Rio Large for the bulk of my training and marathon racing. Still use the Epic now and then in my sea kayak in calmer conditions when I want a bit of speed.

Cannot go wrong with the Epic as your initial wing blade IMHO.

Stellar SEI, Fenn Bluefin S, Sladecraft Comet Long Rec & Vajda K1

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2 years 3 weeks ago #30692 by nwsurfskier
Replied by nwsurfskier on topic Wing paddle worth it?
I also started on an Epic mid-wing. Used it for many years, then recently switched to Jantex Gamma Rio small plus. It has a much firmer catch and cleaner exit for me. The small plus has easily as much bite as the Epic mid.

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