Kayak Bow rudder

Can someone tell me what to do here. I paddle a twisty little creek where turning is important and I find that I can cross bow rudder better than I can bow rudder. Am I even supposed to use a cross bow rudder with a double blade.

I’m trying to get the hang of this but a lot of times it seems like twice the paddle and twice the effort.

I’m losing too much momentum and not turning enough. It is because the kayak paddles are cupped and the canoe blades are flat? Maybe for this twisty stuff I need a flat bladed kayak paddle. I notice that white water paddles seem to be flatter and touring blades for kayak paddles. But for canoe paddles the cupped blades are usually the white water paddles.

vertical shaft?
If you’re bow-ruddering on the right side of the boat, make sure you’re getting your left hand all the way across so it’s on above your right ear. You should be looking under your left forearm. Your right arm is extended. Getting that left arm over to your right side is what keeps the paddle shaft in a vertical plane, so you’re not just scooping water.

Then try planting that, but keep the blade angle parallel to your direction of travel, so it doesn’t turn you. Once you’re there, you can open up the blade so it starts pulling you to the right.

Paddle angle and location
If the paddle isn’t straight up and down you tend to pull the blade towards you, which kills momentum and feels like a strain. A shorter paddle can make this easier - I went to a 5cm shorter blade and was doing this kind of maneuver appreciably better on day one.

The other thing that I find tricky is exactly where to plant it, at kneee, maybe a smidge behind, that kind of thing. Some days I can get the paddle into a really nice neutral position and carve a good turn, other days I can’t seem to find that sweet spot. But it is there. A steeper outside edge seems to help too.

Kayak slalom paddles are curved.
If you are steady and comfortable using a cross-bow, go ahead and use it. I slip into that practice when I get back in a kayak after mostly paddling canoes.

Check your weight shift. Part of the difference in turning efficiency may be due to fore/aft weight shift you aren’t attending to.

For pulling the bow around a turn, you need to shift weight somewhat back as you rudder, to release the bow. Sometimes you may want to release the stern and let it skid, by shifting weight forward. Sometimes you want to do both, shifting weight forward to skid and then back to stop the skid.

Bow rudder description and video

lean the boat
To get the most out of a bow rudder, you want to lean the kayak away from the turn. If your paddle is on the right side doing the bow rudder, lean the kayak on the left edge a bit. it’s a little scary at first but the paddle that’s in the water actually acts like a brace. As Celia said, developing a good bow rudder takes some experimenting and practice to find out where it works best on your boat.

the paddle in at 45 degree”???

if you wanna stop your momentum, possibly hurt yourself and do a “Duffeck stroke”

plant the blade at neutral to the boat and open the angle ‘as needed’. NO reason to drive it in at a BIG open angle.

I LOVE the X-bow rudder and draw!