So you’ve mastered the basic paddle stroke and hopefully you’re now capable of traveling in a straight line! (If you still need some help going in a straight line then check out our last technique blog here).
The next focus of your SUP technique journey is purposely turning your SUP board as and when you need to by utilising the appropriate turning methods. One of the basic turns that you need to be able to perform is the C-turn (also known as a wide turn). This method of turning is especially great in scenarios where you need to redirect your board whilst maintaining forward momentum. When utilising this technique keep in mind the next 3 tips in order to become a C-turn master!
- Make the distance between your two hands more narrow on the shaft by bringing your lowest hand up around 4 hand withs on the paddle, this will help you to achieve a wider outward sweep when performing a C-turn.
- Remember the wider you get your paddle outward during the stroke, the more effective the turn is going to be. Think of it as you are trying to push the water as far away from your board as you can. As a result your board will turn more sharply in the direction you want it to turn. NOTE this is especially important if you are turning away from a potential hazard. If your C-turn isn’t proficient enough then you may not turn away from the obstacle in time, as don’t forget, although you are turning you are also continuing your forward momentum. If this scenario occurs and it looks like your going to come into contact with the potential hazard, implement a back paddle instead (we will be giving you some tips on the back paddle in our next blog).
- Start the stroke of your C-turn with the blade of your paddle angled 90 degrees, parallel with the nose of your board. If you commence the C-turn too wide out, away from the nose of the board you are not going to achieve a full turn of the board and hence the C-turn is not as effective!
If you are looking to advance your paddling skills to the next level, making you move more powerfully and more effectively, a private lesson is a great way for our experienced instructors to help you improve your stroke and even show you more advanced techniques. Alternatively join us for our social paddle sessions. In our social paddles we often head out in challenging conditions, covering distances of up to 5k to really get some good SUPin’ practice, increase our SUP endurance and overall fitness. We always like to finish with a coffee and catch up with the gang – a little reward for all our hard work on the water!
We look forward to seeing you soon to really Turn UP the SUP!