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How to Steer and Paddle a Canoe- Using a J Stroke

Calm water, warm weather, birds chirping and it’s just you, nature and your canoe. Nothing beats a day on the lake.

If you’ve never canoed, you’d probably be surprised to learn the technique that can be involved. For example there are several types of strokes:

  • Pry Stroke
  • Sweep Stroke
  • Draw Stroke
  • Reverse J Stroke
  • J Stroke

In this video, Bruce Lessels teaches the subtle but efficient J stroke for flatwater canoeing.

J-Stroke Directions:

This is a canoe paddling technique that will allow you to keep the paddle on one side of the boat, and steer the boat with the way you finish your stroke.

Start by reaching forward and pulling water. From there, about half way through your paddling stroke, twist the paddle and finish the stroke by pushing away from the stern or rear of the canoe. When you paddle from the right hand, you will pull the boat to the left. by pushing away from the stern of the boat, it will correct the boat direction and keep it going straight. The stroke looks like a J, thus called a j stroke.

 

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