What do you put on your wing paddle to keep hands comfortable?

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8 months 6 days ago - 8 months 6 days ago #40633 by jaydee49
Long time surfski paddler but a basic question.

On longer trips my hands tend to get torn up or sometimes I get numbness in a couple spots.

Most of this is from gripping the paddle too tight, a bad habit of mine but partially because I have a little bit of nerve damage in one hand.

I already use gloves, but curious what the consensus is that people do to their paddle (drip rings? Etc) to keep hands from sliding but also keep them comfortable.

I currently just have a several layers of electrical tape on each side to keep hands from sliding around which works but isn’t kind to my hands.

Thanks in advance.
Last edit: 8 months 6 days ago by jaydee49. Reason: Typo

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8 months 4 days ago #40635 by mrcharly
Nothing

I use pogies rather than gloves for warmth.

I think the electric tape is probably the culprit for rubbing on your skin.

Maybe get a coach to assess your paddling style, if your hands are sliding that much then something is wrong.

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8 months 4 days ago #40639 by Bill L
For those who like them, there a lot of wraps which work, everyone seems to have their favorite - mine is Rescue Tape (Self-Fusing Silicone Tape).

It provides a little bit of "stick" on your hands to allow a firmer grip without impeding rotation of your non-control hand. If you use it, be sure to wrap a couple wraps of electrical tape on either side of the rescue tape, otherwise water will get under it and shorten its useful life.

Also, get good quality rescue tape, 20 mils thick (if done right I find the wraps last a few hundred hours of paddling time). The thinner stuff wont last nearly as long.

And as along as you are wrapping, perhaps add an index bump on the inside of each wrap ( I use 1/4" electrical tape wound around till I get the right size bump, then over-wrapped with a bit of wider electrical tape). This allows your hands to get in the proper position by feel alone.

Your real issue here though may be the "death grip" you are using on your paddle. When I was learning I needed to consciously remind myself to loosen my grip and flex my fingers on the return stroke (when your hand is moving forward), particularly in rough conditions. Otherwise, as you say, your hands will go numb, and, as this would be a repetitive stressor, you could end up causing yourself some lasting damage depending on how much paddling you do.

I just redid my epic small-mid, I'll try to attach a pic
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8 months 4 days ago #40640 by jaydee49
Thanks, this is very helpful.

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8 months 4 days ago #40641 by zachhandler
If gripping too tightly is part of the problem adding an ovalizer to the control hand shaft can help a lot. One of my paddles has an ovalizer and I love it in the winter when neoprene gloves make it hard to feel and grip the shaft. You can buy ovalizers or make your own with a strip of foam on the shaft under the wraps of tape.

Current Skis: Epic v10 g3, NK 670 double, NK exrcize, Kai Wa’a Vega, Carbonology Feather, Think Jet, Knysna Sonic X
Former Skis: Epic V12 g2, Epic V12 g1, Epic v10 double, Nelo 550 g2, Fenn Elite S, Custom Kayaks Synergy

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8 months 2 days ago #40642 by DrA5
I have used racquetball tape, and just got some thin pickleball paddle tape that I am going to try. I found without the increase in diameter, I was gripping too hard and the tape helped with my grip, I didn't need to grip as hard. I also paddle at a 13 degree feather, so I don't have rotation issues with the shaft. It's just a natural paddle stroke to each side.

I thought about going with road bike bar tape, trying to maybe get it a bit thinner. I am also going to remove the current tape and go without for several sessions to see if I even want to put on the new pickleball paddle tape that should be thinner than the racquetball tape. I am open to feedback from others on what I am doing, and with my answer to this thread.

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7 months 4 weeks ago #40652 by Watto
This a TV spoof (see if it gets past the censor) of an Australian criminal character (now unsurprisingly deceased) whose ethos I wholeheartedly subscribe to.

The following user(s) said Thank You: CB23

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7 months 3 weeks ago #40657 by QuiqueW
I'm a little different than the posts on this subject so far. I use electrical tape to build up two bumps for each hand: one the paddle side and the other on the 'in-center' side of the shaft (at the appropriate widths that my hand fit in between). These bumps keep my hands and arms at a constant pre-measured width without too much thought. They keep me from sliding up or down the paddle or shortening my stroke width - something I see a lot of. In between (where my hands are), I rub in a bit of wax (candle, bonbell cheese wax, etc.) each time I go out to give me both some tack and some slippage at the same time. I feather at 45 degrees, so only a bit of rotation going on. I've thought of using bicycle handlebar tape and/or grips, however, I think that both would just shred my hands after a while - the wet would cause too much friction. You need a balance between grip tackiness and slippage. I know this a quirky personal preference and others have found good solutions too, just offering a different approach.

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7 months 2 weeks ago #40661 by mrcharly
Hmm, in one of Ivan's videos he talks about 'what is wrong with your stroke if your hands slide closer together'.

I'll see if I can find it.

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