Today I am going to tell you how to select a kayak fishing paddle and how to paddle with a kayak fishing paddle.
Make Sure your Paddle it’s on the Right Position
One of the things that are frustrating is that you see people out on the water and they have the paddle upside down. Nine times out of ten you can tell the paddles upside down because the company puts the logo on their right side up, so if you look over and your logo upside down so is your paddle.
You might ask yourself Chad what does it matter from the paddles upside down? Well, the reason that it matters is that paddles are designed with a certain shape and a certain design to produce the most power and then the really least the most resistance on the other side.
The paddle is not symmetrical from the center out so you’ve got more volume on the bottom part so when you go through the water it’s a lot like a spoon that you’re picking up cereal if you do it backward you’re not picking that cereal up. It’s like you wouldn’t try to eat cereal by turning in your spoon upside down and sticking it in the water or in the milk, it just wouldn’t work.
So why would you paddle with your paddle backward or upside down because you’re not gonna get the amount of power and resistance that you should be getting especially if you buy a high-performance paddle.
¿How Much to Invest Kayak Fishing Paddle?
In a lot of cases, I’m going to bring you guys solutions at different price points.
I’m gonna stick to my guns on this one and tell you to buy the best possible paddle that you can buy, because if you buy a paddle that is sub hundred dollars you’re probably not gonna get the best quality paddle. Even right at that hundred to one hundred thirty-nine dollar range are going to be good for a couple of years. So you’re really going to want to spend as much as you can on the best possible paddle that you can get because it could become a lifetime investment.
I’m going to show you what this paddle if you buy this paddle and buy a paddle-like this regardless of whether or not you go with bending branches or one that has these features it could be the only paddle that you ever need.
You’re gonna want to go as light as you can because for the most part you’re holding this paddle out in front of you right and so the swing weight is what matters more than the shake weight right.
Holding the paddle out in front of your body and kind of going through the motions of how you’re gonna use the paddle that tells you what the swing weight is how that paddle is going to feel. I say buy the lightest paddle that you can afford within your budget.
There’s this thing called stair-stepping in gear okay you can pay $800 for a $400 paddle and let me tell you how if you buy a hundred dollar paddle and then later on you buy a $200 paddle and then later on you buy a $300 paddle 3 plus 2 is 5 plus 1 is 6 now if you then decide to go on and pay for a $400 pound you’ve paid $1,100 for that wait was that right no a thousand you’ve paid $1,000 for that $400 paddle.
So a lot of people I call them the whistle damn right they pick up a paddle man that’s nice how much does that cost 389 damn right that’s a whistle damn so if it’s out of your price where you decide of your price range and listen I’m just gonna tell you I’m a professional at this I do it all the time I spend 300 plus days on the water so I’m going to spend the money to get the best possible product that I can speak of the spin the money best possible product.
I want to make a little public service announcement right here about myself and about my brand, I use the products I’m sponsored by the products that I use I don’t use this product because I’m sponsored. I choose the products that I really believe in I believe in the products that I use and then I figure out a way to get those guys to sponsor me it’s called the American Dream, you too can live that dream.
Buy the best paddle that you can buy because if not you’re gonna spin your way up to that nice paddle and you’re gonna spend way more on that paddle than you would have spent on that paddle if you just bought the right paddle in the first place, so let’s talk about the right paddle in the first place.
Because you’re using different seat heights because you’re using different kayak widths because the kayak design you know revolution or evolution is still going on you don’t really know what paddle you’re gonna need down the road and you don’t know what you’re gonna change from one boat to another or pursue a different type of fishing so spend a little extra money to get what I what bending branches refers to as the plus
What that means is that paddle can adjust okay it just simply goes together it’s a lot like a painters pole you slide it together and there’s a mechanism inside that allows you to adjust that paddle to different feather angles to different lungs and feather angles.
For me this is the way that I go because I like to have my knife-edge to the wind when I’m paddling right in a windstorm, I like to have it flat when I’m what I call tiptoeing through the flats, I like to flip it upside down when I’m paddling on vegetation, I like to have it short when I’m trying to go fast so I can do a vertical stroke down the side of the kayak when I’m maneuvering, I like to have it long so I can get further out away from the kayak.
When I’ve got a paddle that will allow me to adjust it I can actually on the fly look down to make a quick adjustment and I can go from paddling efficiency to boat management position efficiency by simply changing the length of the paddle pretty much on demand look at a guide mark boom lock it in place and I’m good if I want to add a feather to it and I want to extend it I extend it out I line up my god mark boom and lock it and it’s good so to me the paddle is worth the extra investment to get the ability to adjust the length, if I’m in a high position I want a long paddle, if I’m in a low position of a fishing kayak seat I want a shorter paddle, if I want to maneuver I want it longer, if I want more efficiency I want a vertical paddle stroke so that’s one of the things to consider when you consider purchasing a paddle you might sell your boat 10 12 15 times upgrade upgrade upgrade but you still can use the same paddle.
I would say buy a cheaper kayak first and a better paddle versus buying a really high-end kayak and a cheap paddle I just would I mean that’s honestly just me so I’m gonna stop my public service announcement and now I’m going to tell you about paddling.
How to Paddle on a Fishing Kayak
One of the things that sucks for us as kayak fishermen is that most of the paddling information that’s out there is out there for what I call true paddlers or paddlers that are paddling sea kayaks or sit in psychics where they’re inside the kayak, they don’t have a high back seat and so when they paddle they are taking the paddle and inserting the paddle for a clean catch don’t break the box rotate your upper torso follow-through and look at your blade as it comes out of the water rotate your torso for the opposite catch you want to follow all the way through yeah that all works, unless you’ve got a fishing PFD on and a high back seat and a kayak that doesn’t allow you to do that.
Let me tell you specifically how to paddle a fishing kayak you’re gonna want to decide do you want a feather or do you not want a feather I personally like to take my kayak paddle and I like to bring it back to 45 degrees right ok I like to line it up with a guide mark and I like to lock it in place that’s gonna give me a slight offset between the blades you see that blade you see the one behind me
Here’s the basic fundamental of how to paddle if you’re sitting in the kayak later cross your lap and get your arms just outside of your thighs, then set the paddle stroke up correctly, put your glue hand so you’re gonna take that hand and you’re gonna line it up with the blade okay you’re gonna line those knuckles up.
Your glue hand it’s as if you put glue all over your hand and then grab the paddle blade and let it dry and the opposite of glue is grease so this is your grease hand, so your grease hand is the hand that you’re gonna let it flow, you’re gonna let it slide, as if you put grease on your hand and then you grab your paddle blade some of you out there might need to actually put glue on one hand and glue it to the paddle blade and then put grease.
Follow my direction, so again line that up knuckles take this one and put it on there so what you’re gonna do is you’re gonna reach for the catch on your paddle stroke, now proper paddling technique we’ll talk about in a different video when it comes to sitting in the side of the kite but I want to talk to you about the overview, for years and years I thought I’m not a paddler I’m a fisherman but what I realized is that I paddle as much if not more than a fish so I should probably invest some time and becoming a better paddler.
When you reach out and you slide your paddle into the water that’s called the catch so you slide that paddle out I like to open my hand up for the catch, boom slide the paddle blade in and then as I’m bringing it back I close my hand softly I’m gonna pull with the bottom hand I’m gonna push with the top hand as that blade passes about my hip I’m gonna start to seek the surface what I like to do is as I start to seek the surface I like to turn the blade a little bit knife-edge so that when it comes out in the back there it’s knife-edge. I don’t like to go and just pull it up as it sounds like a reverse toilet flush.
Some of this is about paddling technique but some of its about stealth and not spooking the fish that you’re trying to catch because if you like walking into the spot you’re probably not gonna catch any fish when you get there because you said ding-ding-ding-ding-ding I’m coming it’s no different than rolling up into a flat with your trolling motor on high dropping pliers running into stumps and then expecting to catch a fish, so if you want to be stealthy you have to think stealthy the kayak not just like automatically default stealth there’s no stealth mode switch right you got to think about.
Bring that paddle back, rotate it and I like to look where I’m going instead of looking at my paddle blade so that’s one of the techniques that they teach you in you know high-end paddling classes follow your paddle blade with your head, so as that paddle blade comes behind you you want a knife-edge it to bring it out of the water and then you’re gonna this hand is the grease hand right, so you’re going to loosen this hand up slide that hand in now this is the fulcrum you’re gonna pull with that blade pull and rotate on this hand I almost just keep it open rotate against that inner part of my hand right there boom same thing grease glue rotate with this hand boom see this is the hand that I’m loosening up this hand I never loosen up.
Now for the most part to set this up properly line those knuckles up loosen this hand up get that stance don’t worry about breaking the box because you’re not gonna be following your blade you’re gonna be following your prey you’re gonna be watching where you’re going you’re gonna make sure you’re not running into a treetop because if you’re running a treetop here you shake the treetop 60 feet away and spook everything in the flat so you’re gonna be stealthy okay you’re gonna think stealthy.
One of the things about paddling a fishing kayak is you’re gonna pull and you’re gonna push with your upper hand okay in some instances you’re going to use your torso but for the most part you’re just you’re just getting going once you get that glide going so what I like to do is rotate my torso and my power stroke so once I get that glide going it’s like I’m just tiptoeing and then I like to do what I call a rudder drag so if I want to steer my boat to the left I see a lot of people go like this and they’re paddling on one side trying to get their boat to go to the left paddling real hard on the right side
What I like to do is if I know I want my nose to come to the left I’ll stick my paddle blade here I’ll paddle it halfway through the paddle stroke if I decide I want my nose to go there I don’t have to go oh and then start to do this crap I see that happens all the time, I really wish I had the time to do a drone shot and show this to you but I think you can visualize.
It okay so you bring your blade back all right what you do is when you start to turn it in knife-age instead of taking it out of the water just turn it and then let that drift go and then all you have to do is rudder with your paddle blade so if I want to go left, I’m gonna go left I’m gonna just take that paddle blade I’m gonna come to the back and I’m gonna go like this if I want to go right I’m gonna push away from the boat if I want to go left, I’m just going to hold it out there and kind of bring it in and I’m gonna turn my blade and that’s gonna get me the water flow up and over this it’s gonna create a slight turn and then all I gotta do is modulate the turn.
One of the things you’re gonna want to keep in mind is too many people make an adjustment the boat starts coming they don’t take it out and then the next cast or way over here so now I got to paddle the blade all the way so if you manage the nose of your boat if you watch what that nose is going make slight adjustments as you’re going to stop taking out so if you’re going like this and you overshoot and you’re like oh I can’t take it out just make another quick slow stroke and go like this and just push out that’ll keep your nose from coming around
if you do those three or four little simple things if you buy the best paddle that you can buy up front if you invest a little bit of time and learning how to pedal properly especially if you’re not a peddle kayaker which pedal kayaks are fine I like to be stealthy if the great peddle Drive is ever made I’ll probably be one of the first things to line up I just don’t like giving up my cockpit we’ll get into that in a separate video what we’re talking about here is paddling okay and somebody somewhere at some time even in the best pedal Drive or motor-driven kayak out there is going to have to paddle so you should learn how to do it correctly so
This is a brending branches carbon Pro Plus I think any of the pro series and the plus or the ACE are really sound investments I think once you go below the ace in the bending branches line at some point in your life you’re going to want to upgrade so unless you’re buying a backup paddle or a buddy paddle and you want to have that extra paddle down the road don’t spend a thousand dollars on a $400 paddle, just save up and get that $400 paddle from the get-go if you do not just go ahead and buy like a 2×4 and Whittle yourself out of paddle and use one of those like you know that type.
I love you guys I’ll see you in the next video
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