two-man technique

I am doing an adventure race with someone who has never paddled. We are going to be an a two-man sea kayak. Is it more efficient to start paddling on the same side as each other, or different sides? Any other tips? Thanks.

You mean the ever popular…
… “divorce boat” ?

Same side and in sync. or you will be come “paddle bangers” and neither one of you will be happy with the other.

It is the front paddlers responsibility to maintain an even cadence, and the back paddlers responsibility to stay in synch with the front, since naturally the front guy can’t see the back guy.



Paddle on the same side

– Last Updated: Jul-06-05 7:47 AM EST –

(and in sync as Jack indicated). Two views on paddler placement. Some say to put the stronger paddler in the front because that is where the speed is generated. I feel the experienced paddler should be in the stern to keep the yak on course and to direct the less experienced paddler.

Tell us some more about the race.
How far is it?

Where is it, (river, lake or ocean) ?

Are there other events involved?

I love to hear about this type of stuff.

A few weeks back we were in a three team relay race, and it was a blast.

Being an ex marathoner and a ex serious cyclist, I am always interested in any events that test our endurance, and gives us a goal to train for.

Keep us posted.



Thats where
the “divorce boat” thing comes from. The “directions” :slight_smile:

I speak form experience, after two short (seamed endless) paddles, my wife and I decided we needed separate kayaks. Never looked back :slight_smile:

It’s a sprint adventure race. 5K run, 10 mi. mtn bike, and a 30 min paddle. Should I break up with my girlfriend before the race, or should I wait for her to break up with me during the paddle?

My wife has no issue taking
directions as the front paddler in a tandem as long as I take directions in every other aspect of our lives :).

If she has any kind of competative spirit, she’ll wait to break-up with you until after the award ceremony (if you two have done well) or after you get to shore (if things go horribly wrong).

Either way don’t p*ss her off before that leg is complete.

Nothing worse that a female with attitude in a boat that requires some degree of cooperation to get to shore.

Good luck!


Don’t mean to keep asking …
…questions, but how does that “30 min. paddle” work ? -You must have to go back and forth between a timer, or around a circle???


It’s a fixed distance. I don’t know how far, though. The race promoter thinks it will take 30 min.