Kayak paddle Sleeve?

Ok, I have an idea that is new to me but perhaps not to the more experienced. Last week I was out Kayaking with a group on a Florida river. It was a 16 mile trip with half of it up stream against a moderate current.

It occurred to me that if I place a rotating sleeve over the paddle shaft on my left hand grip I can reduce friction on my hand and potentially increase efficiency due to the lack of friction against my hand.

So when I got home I placed a 5" piece of PVC over the left paddle shaft. Then I wrapped a piece of black electrical tape on the shaft about 1" away from the new sleeve. I did this on both sides of the sleeve so it can slide along the shaft a little bit.

I then sat in my kayak and tried it out with a paddle stroke. I really liked the feel and lack of friction on my left hand against the rotating shaft.

I normally use a solid grip with my right hand and let my left hand rotate around the shaft. I’m excited to try this idea on the water!

I think I am really going to like this change.

Are there any kind, comments or suggestions?

Perhaps, somebody already sells a product like this?

So hand is around PVC which rotates…
…around the shaft? My main concern would be how easily you can have a solid hold of the shaft for things like a solid rudder type of stroke. I’ve had sunscreen cause my hand to slip on the shaft to my dismay while trying to do an aggressive stern rudder on a wave – bracing and other situations may also suffer from lack of grip on both hands. My other concern would be the extra diameter of the shaft with the PVC added and how that might feel.

So what happens when
your left hand needs to become your control hand for a stern rudder, side scull, high brace, bow rudder, etc.? No bueno.

really should lose the solid grip
You really should lose the solid grip with your right hand. But this will probably make it difficult to control your left stroke with a rotating sleeve. Even so, you should really lose the solid grip.

I agree with the prior responses. One of the very important aspects of maneuvering strokes and balancing and rolling back up is blade angle control. I can’t imagine trying to manage a kayak without controling the left blade angle with my left hand and right blade with my right.

BAD technique
This is a solution that doesn’t add up properly

Research proper paddling technique and loose the

invention that doesn’t need inventing to begin with

Try paddling with zero feather offset
Then what you do with both hands will be the same.

Otherwise, I agree with others that you will lose the ability to control the shaft with your left hand for some important strokes and moves that require it.

Gloves - a previously invented device to protect hands from friction. Zero feathering helps too, as already mentioned.

light grip
Keep a very light grip and this won’t be necessary.

Wet-sanding the paddle shaft with 600-800 grit where you grip might help if you have a glossy paddle shaft that is “sticking”.

To help with a light grip, the “pushing” hand in the air should be relaxed and slightly open. Likewise the fingers on your lower (stroke-side) hand can form a relaxed, loose “hook” while “pulling”.

Except for surf, storms and special conditions, I’m holding the paddle so delicately that if you could reach down from above you could easily snatch it out of my hands.

Greg Stamer

I got tired of wearing gloves and taped two pieces of neoprene about 8" long to the paddle shaft. Neoprene provides just the right amount of cushioning—better than Yak Grips, which I found too thick. Neoprene is a bit slippery so I wet it to improve the grip.

Well put, Greg
If I stopped in mid-stroke, the paddle would fall out of my hands. The only thing holding it in place is the pressure I exert against it, hooking at the bottom and pushing at the top. Except for the hooking fingers, my hands are completely relaxed.