Tuesday Tips: Paddle Grip

Tuesday, 08 May 2018 13:40 | Written by 
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Do you use a grip on your paddle? Do you use a grip on your paddle?

[Editor: This is the first of what I hope will be many "Tuesday Tips" from Stewart O'Regan, mad Irish-Aussie and Think Kayak's agent in Australia...!]  Here's Stew: If I had a dollar for every time I get asked what grip tape I use, why I use it etc etc, well I might not have the resources to retire, but I’d certainly be better off!

Using grip tape is totally personal preference. I don’t actually suggest people use it, and very often when people use one of my paddles they don’t like it, but I’m a massive fan, just love the feel. I first tried it when I had the opportunity to train with Vince Ferevi, the Hungarian 200mt world champion, years ago and he had his paddles taped. I tried it, liked it, and have run it ever since.

There are heaps of tape options. Strapping tape, like I use (make sure it’s a soft one), tennis grip tape is popular, and I’m hearing guys using ice hockey grip tape now as it’s water proof.

For those who don’t like tape, I do recommend using a very fine sand paper and lightly sanding the shaft for improved grip, especially around Sydney with so much oil in the water from the high boat traffic.

Don’ts of grip tape? We’ll definitely don’t roll up to a race trying it for the first time. Your hands will not like you. And don’t use normal Elastoplast from the pharmacy, you’ll absolutely shred your hands.

But no matter what you choose, it doesn’t really matter, so long as you grip and rip!

'Til next Tuesday...



Stew O'Regan is based in Rose Bay, NSW, Australia.

Find more about him and Think Kayaks at: http://www.thinkkayak.com.au/contact-us/

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