THE DIFFERENT STAND-UP PADDLE TURNING TECHNIQUES
Are you starting to feel comfortable on your SUP and would now like to know how to turn more easily, faster or with more style? Are you using a longer, more streamlined touring board and finding it more difficult to turn? Itiwit shares its top tips on the different turning techniques so that you can enjoy manoeuvring your stand-up paddleboard.
FOR BEGINNERS - THE CLASSIC TURN
This is the easiest way to turn: simply paddle on the opposite side to turn the board (paddle left to go right). The more you paddle towards the back of your SUP, the faster you will turn. This technique is not suitable for long touring boards because it takes a long time to rotate them using this technique, back paddling will work much better.
TO TURN FASTER - THE BACK PADDLE
This time you need to paddle on the side you want to turn, but in the opposite direction, i.e. from your feet towards the front of the board. In a few strokes, the front of the board will rotate in the direction of the turn. This works very well with long touring boards. Another technique, called a "reverse paddle turn", is quite similar but requires a special technique because you have to paddle on the other side of the board without changing the position of your hands on the paddle.
FOR INTERMEDIATES OR FOR RACING: THE PIVOT TURN
During an SUP race, you need to turn as quickly as possible around the buoys on the course. To do this, competitors use the pivot turn. This involves stepping back on the board and getting in "surfing" position (one foot in front, one foot behind) so that your rear foot is over the fin. By pressing down hard on your back foot while making a circular movement in the water with the paddle in the direction of the turn, the front of the board lifts out of the water and the SUP pivots on its tail. Be careful, this type of turn is very unstable, it is important not to stop paddling, to keep a good hold on your paddle and to keep your balance. Once the SUP has rotated, you will need to move forward quickly to get back in the parallel feet position to go straight. Good luck!