Canoe Racing Question

I’m a beginer when it comes to racing, so this may be an obvious (stupid) question.

I participated in a recreational race over the weekend, racing a solo canoe and I’ve got the following technique question.

I’m left handled and normally paddle 80-90% on the left side, switching occaisionally just for comfort, or when water conditions require it.

In the race, I paddled sit and switch, roughly 50/50 to keep me on couse without J-stroking or ruddering. It felt as if I was slightly more efficient and a bit faster, paddling on my weak (right) side. On the right side, I could feel my stronger left arm pushing forward, with my right hand serving as more of a fulcrum. On the other side of the boat (left), its more like both hands are pulling. The odd part was that it felt easier too on the right.

Does this make any sense, that I’d be faster on the weak side?

Also, it seemed that in trying to get my paddle back in the water just as soon as possible for the next stroke, any splash or unclean entry, did more to slow my speed than waiting just a fraction of a second for a clean entry with no splash.



makes sense
you are naturally just forcing the paddle on your strong side. Your weak side is useing better technique. I find that after 20-30 minutes I tend to net a better time. I guess we just get more effiecent after we get alittle tired…

Strong side
For many left handed paddlers, their strong side paddling with a single blade is on the right side. It might be that way for you also.

After 20 or 30 MILES
Charlie you don’t get faster, WE just get slower and you pull away.

So the weak becomes the strong?
So should I try to copy the weak side tecnique on the strong side?

Is there any practical way to measure (prove) that this is faster, such as timing between fixed points?