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Paddling backwards ensures that your students are always JUST as comfortable in a backwards position as they are in a forwards facing position. Many of today’s great paddlers spend many hours on river paddling backwards. Entering currents backwards, running rapids backwards (when safe) and much more… just to achieve that level of comfort when the inevitable turnaround happens.
- Have the students pick a target in front of them that is close.
- Look behind yourself to make sure that there are no obstructions in your way.
- Once they are underway have them keep their eyes in the target. Every 5 strokes or so have them glance over their shoulder to make sure that nothing is in their way.
one of the tricks to helping maintain when paddling backwards in a smaller boat is to weight the bow slightly by using a forward paddling posture. This takes the weight of the stern of the boat and allow it to track better