Skinny Stick

I recently purchased a Greenland paddle and I like it very much. It does well in windy conditions but seems a tad slower than a European style paddle.

Would appreciate any comparisions from this group.

apples for oranges

– Last Updated: Apr-28-11 1:48 PM EST –

There are probably many theories on which is faster and who has perfect form with which paddle, etc. etc

I swapped over to Greenland paddle a few years ago. When I changed over it felt much faster to me...but ...that might be because I had sloppy form with the euro style.

When paddling with a group I have no problem keeping up. On the last paddle I certainly had a slower boat design, but one fellow was a bit surprised that though he had a boat listed as a fast boat and using a wing paddle he was not passing me by.
I think if you were timing yourself in the same boat in the same conditions each time then you might get a better idea which paddle is faster than the other for you.
Then go back and try it again after a month or so and see if there is a change.

I think if I use the Greenland paddle yet paddle euro style with it I am not getting the max speed that I could coax out of it.
I'm probably not stating it very well but think in terms of cadence and that might give you an idea of what I'm trying to say.
If you look at race results you won't see Greenland style paddle winning races, but if you want to see which paddle is faster for you, then you might be surprised at the results.

Local GP users
Used correctly a GP is no slower. That is not a small caveat though - it takes a little time to get to the correctly part.

There are folks who use GP’s in the local ADK paddle group who likely will have some insights. The next paddle is this coming Tuesday night. Check the Outings section for the Albany Chapter of the ADK. No previous signup needed, just on time and make sure your PFD is on and zipped.

Joe O did set a time record round Vancouver Island with a GP. A race of a different sort…

No Slower, No Faster For Me
If the GP had slowed me down I never would have sold my Euros.

For me the GP is the best tool for getting sideways or upside down then right side up again.

Give it time
Give it time and you will develope more speed. I paddled alongside two friends the other day. One had a Werner Ikelos and the other an Epic midwing. I had no trouble keeping up with them especially after 15 miles. Nothing against euro paddles, I just no longer have use for them.


Faster? Maybe - Less Tiring - Yes
For me, the big difference is in the effort required over the run of a day. I can literally double my time without feeling any fatigue. I don’t notice any speed loss, but then again, speed isn’t important to me; if I wanted fast, I’d be running a skiff with an outboard :->))

"used correctly"
The most efficient stroke with a GP is very different than the most efficient stroke with a Euro paddle. For example, with a GP you want the maximum power to come late in the stroke. With a Euro you want it to come early. There are other substantial differences. It is almost certain that many of those who are comparing paddles cannot do the most efficient stroke with both. So interpret the conclusions with a grain of salt.

The best resource
is at

You can learn a lot just reading the articles and links off this page.

The canted stroke in my experience adds a lot of endurance and takes away some of the joint stress. And with 2 mildly arthritic shoulders, I find that to be the best part. I can still paddle with a euro or a wing, but nowhere near as long pain-free.

Kinds of speed
I get better acceleration with a Euro but can paddle longer with a GP. Over short distances I think my speed is probably about the same with either. For all day paddles I probably cover greater distance easier with a GP. I most often use a GP, but switch to a Euro for surf or moving water. YMMV

Same experience here

– Last Updated: Apr-29-11 4:35 PM EST –

And yes, with the GP I do use somewhat different stroke compared to Euro and yet another with a Wing.

With the GP one can maintain decent speed well over long distances but I find that if I want to go really fast (e.g. pushing the limits of the boat, whatever that speed might be) for any given period of time, I prefer something with a wider spread between my hands.

GPS Races
Am I the only one who runs GPS races with myself?

I like to switch off between euro, GL and single blade, because slightly different muscle groups are used for each. So I switch off now and then to avoid fatigue.

I have on occasion, sprinted to see how fast I could go per the GPS, then switched paddles and sprinted again, to see which paddle was “faster”. Not scientifically perfect, but I find I can push the boat faster with the euro, but not by much. And, given that I am never actually paddling at maximum sprint when I’m out cruising, I feel this is sort of irrelevant. But it confirms that there is not a heck of a lot of difference in “power” between GL and euro.


me too
I like to not only switch between euro and greenland, but also an aleut and a storm. All use different muscle groups. I also use a GPS which I call the elctronic coach from hell because it just goads you on and on and on…

gonna drown it one day…


GP wins stroke for stroke
I’ve done a comparison with my GP and a friend with an Ikelos. Both in NDK Explorers, he’s a bit heavier, so maybe some more drag there.

The GP was my 87"er (9" shorter than my arm span calls for).

Stroke for stroke, I gain on him substantially with the GP. Don’t know why, but it works. Surprised the heck out of me. I thought I’d need to paddle a higher cadence, but I turn out to need a slower cadence to maintain the same speed as most of the folks I paddle with.