In this SUPboarder How To video, we introduce you to brace techniques on the water. Brace techniques are among the most common paddle skills all paddlers need to learn as they will help you to stay on your board when feeling unbalanced.
There are four main brace techniques we cover in this video;
- Low Brace
A Low Brace needs bent knees for a lower centre gravity and then we push the non-power face of the paddle blade down on the water to stabilise ourselves. It’s the most common brace technique used on the water.
- High Brace
A High Brace is very similar to a low brace, however the power face of the paddle blade is facing down and we can combine this move with forward stokes when step back turning.
- High Brace + Draw Stroke
This technique uses a draw stroke, in which we extend the paddle out to the side of board and face the power face of the paddle blade toward the board. Placing the paddle in the water, we pull the board toward the paddle but also stabilise ourselves. This is especially useful if you are about to fall off the opposite side of the board your paddle is on as we can pull ourselves back on the board using this technique.
- Stability Brace
This technique uses the paddle blade in the water and combines all of the brace techniques to keep us balanced when not moving. SUP surfers find this technique very handy when waiting for waves.
These brace techniques are great for beginners to practice and for more advanced riders to really hone their skills so they can use narrow race boards, smaller surf sups and paddle in more choppy conditions.
Remember, you need to practice these techniques before you need to use them. Things happen so fast on the water that if you need to think about how to do a brace stroke, it’s definitely too late and you end up falling off.
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