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How to Kayak 2(Basic Kayaking Strokes)

Table Of Content

The Basic Kayaking Strokes

There are many skills to consider when learning to kayak. Strokes and navigation are key. 

The Forward Stroke

This is the stroke you do most of the time, so good technique pays dividends:
The catch phase: Wind your torso and immerse your blade fully on one side of the boat next to your feet.
The power phase: Rotate your torso as the blade moves behind you. Follow the in-water blade with your eyes and your torso will follow. Focus, too, on pushing against the shaft with your upper hand as you move.
The release phase: When your hand reaches just behind your hip, “slice” the blade out of the water.
To repeat, you simply immerse the out-of-water blade next to your feet. (Your torso will already be wound correctly.)
Technique tip: To maintain the paddle shaft at a comfortable angle as you stroke, “check the time” on an imaginary watch on your upper wrist.

The Reverse Stroke

This is the basic braking stroke. It can also move you backward if your kayak is already stopped. It’s the exact opposite of a forward stroke: You immerse the blade next to your hip; the push is done with your lower hand; and you slice the blade out of the water when it nears your feet.

The Sweep Stroke

This is the basic turning stroke. If you do repeated forward strokes on the same side of the boat, you’ll notice that the boat slowly turns the other way. The sweep stroke simply exaggerates this effect. The sweep is the same as a forward stroke, except that you alter the blade path so that it carves a much wider arc on the side of the boat. Sweep strokes on the right side of the boat will turn the boat left and left-side sweep strokes will turn the boat right.

Using Rudders and Skegs

Rudders: If your boat has a rudder, it sits at the back of the boat, and you use your foot pedals to control whether the boat moves left or right. Push the foot peg on the right and your boat will turn right (and vice versa on the left).

Skegs: A skeg is a fixed-direction fin that drops down from the bottom of the hull. It is used primarily to aid with tracking (keeping your boat traveling straight), especially in windy conditions (rudders can also play this same role).

Novices often use both rudders and skegs incorrectly and often forget to pull them up in shallow water, which can cause damage. For this reason, it’s simplest to leave them undeployed. Paddling without your rudder encourages you to learn better paddling technique more quickly. And if it’s so windy that you need a skeg or rudder, you really shouldn’t be paddling without an experienced guide who can explain how to use them properly.

Safety Precautions for Kayaking

Any time you head out on the water, bringing the essential gear and clothing is important. A few additional safety measures are also in order on a non-guided tour:
Bring a paddling buddy. When no guide is along, you should always go with another paddler who can summon help or provide assistance.
Make a togetherness pact. A buddy who paddles off out of sight or earshot won’t be much help.
Know your distance limit. If you haven’t had rescue training, never paddle farther from shore than you’re easily able to swim. (Near-shore areas are more interesting anyway.)
Do your hazard research. Ask a knowledgeable local paddler about places to avoid, as well as currents, tides and weather forecasts.
Know your water temp. You should always dress for a capsize—at a minimum, that means some sort of wetsuit when the water is 60 F or less.
Check your PFD. Make sure it fits tightly and is only loose enough so that it won’t interfere with your breathing. If temps heat up and you need to remove a layer, paddle to shore first—never remove your PFD on the water.
Be cautious about using a spray skirt. Don’t wear one unless you know how to properly pop it off and do a wet exit.
Don’t forget your whistle. The universal distress signal is three long blasts.
If you plan to kayak in the future, consider taking a rescue class. And classes that cover navigation, tides, currents and surf can help you avoid trouble in the first place.

Tips for Your First Time Kayaking

Planning your first non-guided outing? Make things easy on yourself:

  • Choose a small, calm body of water. Lakes or ponds with little or no powerboat traffic are ideal.
  • Find a gently sloping sandy beach to launch. Steep, mucky and rocky shorelines will be more challenging.
  • Go on a sunny, windless day. You’ll keep complications low and comfort high.
  • If it’s breezy, start out by paddling into the wind. Paddling into a headwind on your way back is a struggle; paddling with a tailwind is, well, a breeze.
  • Plan on an outing, not an expedition. For an optimum fun to fatigue ratio, keep your paddling time under two hours.



1.Professional canoeist   2.One of the founders of lydia sports 3.Practice kayaking for more than 15 years.

4.Women’s 200m and 1000m single kayak champion of the third national kayak U23 Championship

5.the silver medal in the women’s 500m four person kayak competition of the 13th National Games



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