Am thinking of going from a 194 cm paddle to 198 cms for a boat that is 27.5"s wide and 8'6"s long. My torso and wing span are about average. general river running and surfing only.
Pros and cons of doing this?
Werner has a pretty nice paddle fit guide. You can enter activity, style, blade size and see where they place you on paddle length. For someone 5'10" you're probably good in that range of 194cm to 198cm. Lean towards longer if you think you'll be primarily river running, and towards shorter if you'll be primarily play boating. Not sure how boat width factors in but that seems to be a pretty standard width so I wouldn't worry about that too much.
I paddled with a shorter bent shaft for a long while, but then I stepped up to a 198 straight for creeking and river running and found that my boating definitely improved... More speed, power in big water, and boofs got bigger. I still like a shorter paddle for playboating.
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