What are the advantages of hand paddling?
In a nutshell, using hand paddles provides a more intimate relationship with the water.
We believe that using hand paddles greatly enhances your overall whitewater skill set. Hand paddles naturally require the paddler to improve their water reading skills, to focus a little more on boat control, and to further develop their core strength. Rather than relying solely on power to make those crucial moves, the hand paddler will use river features such as holes and reactionaries in the navigation of rapids. By finding curlers to ferry, learning different boof strokes, and discovering new ways to roll, using hand paddles can make your home run new and exciting again. They also do wonders for the shoulder muscles!
Are hand paddles easy to remove?
The tightness of the straps usually dictate how quickly the paddles can be removed. This is often determined by how comfortable one becomes using them. As someone's confidence in hand paddling grows, they tend to gradually tighten the straps down more firmly. The tighter the straps are, the slower they are to remove.
On our own line of hand paddles, we make different styles to suit different needs. Since our Pro Series hand paddles are designed to be very connected to your hands, they are the slowest to shake off. It is much easier to remove them after first loosening the straps. This can be easily done with the ends of the opposing paddle or with anything that provides some resistance to the buckles as the straps slide through them, such as your arm or wrist. Our Original Series and Dedos hand paddles are quicker to remove than the Pro Series because they lack the thumb loops. While they can be pulled off without first loosening the straps, loosening the straps does make it easier. The Dedos have the added benefit of allowing the user to loosen the straps while still wearing them. Finally, our Quick Draws were designed to easily slide off the hands when the fingers are in a relaxed position. Only by keeping some thumb tension on the paddle straps will they remain on when the water gets rough.
Is it hard to roll with hand paddles?
Rolling with hand paddles is very easy. Because it is intuitive to use your hands to right yourself when upside down, rolling with hand paddles comes naturally to most people. Gone is the long paddle that has to be wrestled against the current and set into the proper position. With hand paddles, even if you miss your hip-snap, you can just doggy-paddle your way up.
What size of hand paddles do I need?
This is personal preference and largely dependent on the type and style of boating you do. Any of our four styles can be made into any size. One thing to note is that the XL paddles may not easily fit into the stern of some smaller kayaks, so if you are planning to use our hand paddles as a backup to a traditional paddle, consider the large size unless your boat has plenty of rear storage space.
What size are your hand paddles?
We make five sizes to fit all kinds of boating and all sizes of people. Our youth size paddles measure approximately 8" wide x 9 1/4" tall, our small paddles are 9" x 10 1/2", our medium paddles are 9 3/4" x 11", the large paddles are 10" x 11 3/4", and the XL paddles measure 11" x 12 1/4". Due to the stiffness of the paddles, they will be noticeably more powerful than many other brands of similar size.
Do your hand paddles float?
Yes... and no. They are buoyancy neutral. If you lay them into the water they will usually stay on the surface, but they will go with the current if left unattended, and this includes going under. A little strip of mini-cell foam glued on with contact cement will go a long way in keeping the paddles on the surface, and will make them easier to find if you happen to be displaced from one.
What colors do you offer?
We offer our paddles in white and blue, as well as black in a very limited supply. The straps come in a variety of colors and patterns, many of which we keep in stock, including several Shockerz branded straps. The lead time for out of stock strap colors and patterns runs about two weeks.
What's the point of Beater Belts?
Beater Belts are a handy thing to have when you gotta keep your pants on. Not only are they unfazed by water, they weigh next to nothing, are dirt cheap, come in a huge variety of colors and patterns, and pack down super small. This is advantageous for hikers, backpackers, travelers, rafters, and climbers. The belt straps are also useful as tree savers when hammock camping, for making quick on-the-fly field repairs to boating equipment, and as an extra piece of gear in your safety kit.
What size are Beater Belts?
Beater Belts come cut-to-fit in either 36 inches or 48 inches in length. They are made from both one inch webbing and one and one-half inch webbing.
What are the buckles made of?
We generally use metal slider-type buckles, but they can be ordered with metal O-rings and plastic buckles as well. The plastic buckle Beater Belts are great for travel, as they need not be removed when going through metal detectors.