Author Topic: Prone paddling a raceboard  (Read 1961 times)

FloridaWindSUP

  • Sunset Status
  • ****
  • Posts: 326
  • Marine Biologist, Riviera Paddlesurf Ambassador
    • View Profile
    • James' Blog
Prone paddling a raceboard
« on: December 01, 2017, 09:22:12 AM »
I tried prone-paddling my 14x23 Riviera RP yesterday. (I'm resting my de Quervain's tendinitis hand by not touching a SUP paddle for two weeks, but I had to get on the water somehow.) My goal was to do 1600 m. Here's what I noticed:

1) It was hard but not impossible.
2) It quickly tired out my neck, back, and shoulders, but didn't bother my hand tendinitis
3) I had to switch back and forth from lying to kneeling, and sometimes coast for a few seconds to recover
4) The sup carry handle bothered my stomach after a while
5) A butteryfly stroke seemed more efficient than a crawl (less slipping per stroke), but I did both
6) It was hard to steer
7) I could see how an actual, narrower prone board would help get the arms deeper to grab more water
8) I did the 1600 m in about 15 minutes, averaging 2/3 the speed that I would go with a paddle
9) I wondered how much practice it would take to get the neck/shoulder endurance to be able to paddle without constantly switching positions and taking breaks
10) Unlike in SUP, the out-of-the-water phase of the stroke seemed at least as tiring as the in-the-water phase
11) It was hard to tell if my fore-aft trim was right
12) My speedcoach sup GPS didn't pick up on my strokes consistently because there wasn't enough acceleration/deceleration per stroke.

Wondering if anyone else has prone-paddling-a-sup experience or other advice.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2017, 09:23:48 AM by FloridaWindSUP »
14x23 Riviera RP
14x27.25 Fanatic Falcon
11'8 Exocet WindSUP
10'4 Angulo WindSUP
...and a bunch of windsurf stuff

dabigkahuna

  • Rincon Status
  • ***
  • Posts: 124
    • View Profile
Re: Prone paddling a raceboard
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2017, 12:37:17 PM »
Interesting topic.  I have the opposite problem.  When I paddle SUP I have back / shoulder pain and prone I don't.  I've been surfing for 40+ years and although I can't arch my back like I used to, prone still feels more comfortable to me.

I've thought about buying a dedicated prone paddle board but they are hard to find and when you do they're expensive.  On the other hand, SUP race boards pop up on Craigslist pretty often.  I saw one for $400 recently.

Besides the carry handle, I think some SUP boards have deck depressions for feet which would make paddling prone extremely uncomfortable.  You'd also have to use a board that wasn't too wide or high (thick).  Paddling a wide board would become tiring pretty quick.  My longboard is 11' x 24" wide and that's comfortable for me (I'm 6'5").  I think most SUP race boards tend to be about 28" wide which might not be as comfortable (although I haven't tried it).

For neck/back pain, stretching/exercises should help and maybe put a foam chin rest on the board.  You see that on a lot of prone paddle boards.

FloridaWindSUP

  • Sunset Status
  • ****
  • Posts: 326
  • Marine Biologist, Riviera Paddlesurf Ambassador
    • View Profile
    • James' Blog
Re: Prone paddling a raceboard
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2017, 12:58:38 PM »
Foam chin rest is a good idea. I'll try that next time.

It makes sense that someone with years of surfing or swimming experience would be naturally adapted to prone paddling more than sup. I don't have any surfing or serious swimming background so I don't think I've developed the right muscles or flexibility for it.

Interesting that your 11' surfing longboard is actually 1" wider than my 14' sup. You would probably FLY prone paddling a narrow 14' sup like mine. The Riviera has a flat padded deck that seems fine for lying on, and the  carry handle is removable. I'd be really curious to hear what you'd think paddling something like it if you do manage to pick up one cheap from Craigslist.
14x23 Riviera RP
14x27.25 Fanatic Falcon
11'8 Exocet WindSUP
10'4 Angulo WindSUP
...and a bunch of windsurf stuff

Eagle

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 2426
    • View Profile
Re: Prone paddling a raceboard
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2017, 01:12:17 PM »
Yeah have on my 23.  Not my cup of tea as had to switch from lying to kneeling.  Also steerage was crap.  But could go ok speed with good glide lying.  The windmill effect seemed more efficient than the double grab for me.  But much prefer standing.  So much easier and way more comfortable and balanced.  Dry as well.  Was getting soaked splashing even with a clean entry.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2017, 01:15:01 PM by Eagle »
Fast is FUN!   8)
Dominator - Touring Pintail - Bullet V2 - M14 - AS23