Knee paddling pros and cons? Ouch?


Well-Known Member
Sep 21, 2011
USA Virginia
All useful information. Couple tips I got when learning knee paddling on prone boards. Keep your shins touching the board. Don’t just have your knees and toes touching. Might take some sitting in front of the tv getting comfortable instead of laxing on the couch. Careful spreading your knees. If you keep them closer together you will actually use less movement to correct and or counter balance. Put to me like your using your legs like mini pistons. Micro movements. Last thing is forward movement is your friend. As soon as you get to your knees Stratton planting your hands.


Well-Known Member
Sep 7, 2010
Prone paddling, particularly craning my neck to see incoming waves while paddling out, kills my neck and shoulders. Knee paddling significantly reduces stress/pain since it’s much easier to engage the large muscles in the back while keeping elbows closer to body. Hard on my knees tho. And I’m so used to prone paddling and mind lazy I simply forgot the knee paddling option until I’m in a Wawa’s on the way home, filling baggies with ice for my neck and shoulders.


Well-Known Member
Jan 28, 2014
2' and onshore
To clarify, I posted that video because I agree with the idea that stability comes from being on knees/shins/tops of feet when knee paddling, and if you have tightness in your hips and lower back, that's difficult. Bending from the waist/hips to paddle, rather than hunching over in the upper back, generates more power and doesn't hurt (provided you have the needed mobility).

The con: if you topple over while knee paddling back out, it looks absurdly kooky. I would assume. I've never done that lots of times.


Well-Known Member
Jun 9, 2019
San Clemente, CA
I also believe that prone paddling with the alternating arm strokes is much more efficient then knee paddling with both arms stroking at the same time. Much easier to build momentum and maintain it.


New Member
Apr 5, 2021
Los Angeles
Okay it seems sort of doable... awkward but doable. But ouch it hurts the tops of my feet... more than my knees. Do you guys cross your feet? Seems like a bad idea as it puts the weight on one foot more but it comes natural to me for some reason and I can just keep switching them back and forth when one starts hurting too much. But, yeah, the pop up is kinda seamless. I can't seem to get my shins all of the way down to the wax though...

My observations - so far are thus: why not learn it? No one has to be all about knee paddling all the time lol. Seems like a lot of loggers just switch back and forth. It's just another arrow in the quiver. But def kinda awkward to learn at first.


Well-Known Member
Jun 9, 2007
Knee paddling is definitely more efficient than prone paddling, it's all in the glide..
And don't cross your feet.


Well-Known Member
Nov 19, 2015
USA Virginia
I knee paddle a lot, almost all the time. Keeps me out of the cold water and is much better on my back. I do mostly catch waves prone but do knee paddle take offs when possible. I make knee pads out of old wetsuits and add extra layers, giving me about 3/4" of padding on my knees, the knee paddling does not bother my knees with the pads. To effectively knee paddle you must have sufficient flotation to make headway or you are wasting your time and effort. Helps to be flexible enough to rest your butt on your ankles.

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