Paddling trim - Optimize your efforts with the right trim!

Paddling trim! If you want to paddle as effortlessly as many of the surfers you see in the water that have years of experience you need to learn to paddle in trim. This will save you worlds of effort and frustration. You will soon be one of those effortlessly gliding through the water rather struggling with every stroke.

What does paddling trim mean? Paddle around in my bikini looking as hot as possible? No, but you can do both at the same time.

You want to create the least amount of surface drag or resistance as possible. Just as you see in auto racing, bicycle racing or swimming you want as little slowing you down as possible. It is always better to expend a minimal amount of energy in order to cover the same distance, then you have that energy to use for catching waves.

Anyone who has already been in a canoe, kayak or rowing scull will already be familiar with the concept if not with the terminology. At the ideal weight distribution and speed whatever piece of watersport equipment you are on will actually sit higher in the water. This reduces the amount of drag and makes you faster, with less effort.

So how do you figure this out? The biggest difference will be made by changing your weight distribution. By moving into slightly different positions on your board and paddling and comparing how far you travel for the effort you will eventually find the ideal position to be in on your board. Making minor adjustments of an inch or so will show you how much difference a slight change can yield.

With all the waves and currents, how do I know whether it is my position or the ocean that is changing my paddling trim? Ideally you will practice this in a lake or lagoon so will have calm water. If you are practicing in surf, aim for a very calm day with uncrowded conditions. It will not actually take much time to figure it out. Once you do, drag a fingernail through your wax to mark where your body should be positioned.

Paddling in trim is actually even more important for women then men. We just do not have the same amount of upper body strength as men, so must be even more conscious of using that strength unnecessarily. After a while it will become second nature to hop onto your board in the exact position you should be in.

You will probably not spend more than an afternoon figuring out the best position. But that time will pay off hugely over time, in both the saving of your energy and most importantly your ability to catch more waves.

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