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Old 11-24-2003   #1
 
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A stupid question...

What is the advantage of having feathering on a paddle? I am relatively new at kayaking and learned to paddle with no feathering and it just seems like a pain to have 45 feathering.

I am also looking to buy a paddle for surfing and some flatwater and I am 6' 2". I am looking to spend about $200. What would be good paddle/size?

Thanx a bunch
Jeremy

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Old 11-24-2003   #2
 
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Feathering, I believe, came from the racing aspect of paddling. A feathered blade cuts through the wind more efficiantly, allowing for a faster and less taxing stroke. This is useful for us non-racers as well. Have you ever had to paddle up wind? It can be tough to get that paddle around without hitting oneself in the face with the shaft in a stiff wind. Feathering definately helps. Also, when playing it seems to be a good thing to have a fast paddle speed. I rarely see any 45 degree feathered paddles anymore. They tend to cause pre-mature wrist problems. More common now are 30 degree, I think. I may be off by a few degrees.

I can't help you out much with a recomondation, as I have not been in the market. Hope that helps. Maybe someone will retort my explination, as I may be mistaken. Happy hunting...paddle hunting, that is!
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Old 11-25-2003   #3
 
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You can have all your questions answered.

Go to www.jimisnyder.com

This is Jim Snyder's web page, Read "the feather rap" Jim's been building paddles for over 25 years and has done a ton of research on the topic. Some of the information may be just his opinion but it's very interesting. In his opinion there's a lot more to it than just the wind aspect. Check it out. Matt
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Old 11-25-2003   #4
gh
 
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I have seen a few videos of people using zero offset paddles. Looks pretty cool. Use what you are comfy with and far as length that is a personal decision. For your height I would say around 200.
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Old 11-25-2003   #5
 
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I am 6.1 and started off with a 45 degree back in the day... WHAT A WRIST KILLER!
My opinion is not to go with a zero degree as the wind does become a factor at times and I don't think it is as natural to your bodies motion. ERDVM1 has zero and loves it, but for me and many others is a 15 degree is just perfect. Especially for bent shafts...

2 cents...

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Old 11-26-2003   #6
jim
 
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You need to distinguish between bent shaft and straight shaft paddles because they register differently in your upper (pushing) hand. Too low a feather with a straight shafted paddle will leave you pushing with the flesh between your thumb and fingers- instead of the bones at the base of your fingers. This is not as good of a connection to get a lot of work done with. Funny thing about those bent shafts- they were introduced by flatwater racers many years ago- but then abandoned about 5 years ago- when it was corroborated that they don't substantially help.... The ww crowd still eats them up like candy tho- like it's new stuff or something.

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Old 11-26-2003   #7
gh
 
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I have problems with my wrist and I would probably have to quit paddling if it weren't for bent shaft paddles so if, as you say, "they are candy" then give me another bite. I don't pay much attention to what serious athletes do with their equipment. The honest truth is that most of them never have problems with their bodies which is one of the reasons they are superior athletes. I would like to try a 15 degree bend, who makes them?
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Old 11-26-2003   #8
 
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Not trying to be a contrarian but I'll have to disagree about pro atheletes not being injured, Ask EJ and Tyler Curtis about injuries just to name a few. I think that's part of the sport and there will never be a cut and dry about paddle shafts, length, size, blades, feather.............Dogma is bad. Matt
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Old 11-28-2003   #9
gh
 
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Not exactly sure where you are going with the Dogma comment but I will agree that pro athletes do get hurt but most of them have pretty amazing healing powers. As a rule due to the sponsorship game I don't pay much attention to what pro athletes use. Do you consider that Dogma?
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Old 11-28-2003   #10
Don
 
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Crank Shafts, not Bent...

Flatwater racers used a crankshaft paddle. The bend in the shaft (bentshafted paddles) has nothing to do with adding more power to your stroke. It just alines the bones in your hands and wrists. Making for an ergonomic grip and hand placement.

A crankshaft paddle has a forward bend (about 12-15 degees), the bend or crank is located between the hands and the blade of the paddle. It is suppose to allow more forward reach, and permite more grab in a veritcal stroke while still maintaining proper body position. Also to allow quicker exit of the paddle blade.

Now most flatwater racers have switched to a wing style paddle. And you won't find those in your local play hole. That's one paddle only designed for the forward stroke.

Bent shafted paddles have helped many paddlers that have needed to take it easy on wrists and joints. I've been using one for the last six years and it's been great. No more sore forarms or sore elbows.
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