The stand up paddle explained in detail by Todd Bradley from C4 Waterman Part 2 with Video


I asked Todd Bradley from C4 Waterman to let me film him talking about the stand up paddle to share the fundamental information with everyone. I got a lot out of his explanations and hope it can help others.

C4 Waterman Stealth Stand Up Paddle and Paddle Grip

Click here for stand up paddle video 2:

(click thumbnail to launch video)


Part 2

Todd Bradley: Shape is super important. There’s a lot of blades. Some of them just go straight out like this and they have a lot of shoulder in them. The reason why we don’t design it with shoulder is because if you look at the board like this, and the same is true with canoes, what we’re trying to do is – just like a prop on a blade, you don’t have the prop sitting on one side of the boat because the board will turn one direction. What you try to do if you have a single prop is you try to put the propeller of a motor boat is exactly on the back center of the boat. So the same is true with the paddle. What we’re trying to do here is you can see that the way the paddle is designed is to get as much of the blade towards under and towards the center of the board. So then you’re more efficient through the water and your board wants to pull straight. Again, if we’re paddling now Evan and we have our blade right here out of the water, how efficient are we and how close are we to the center where the best power is? That’s one of the reasons why a lot of people broach on their paddles when they take strokes, because they’re either sweeping from the outside, which is going to swing the board around, or they’re not putting the blade all the way in to the water and they’re running it by like this, it’s banging the rail and it’s not efficient because you’re not getting the blade in the center portion of the board where you need to get the best power possible, the most efficient power possible.

icon for podpress  The stand up paddle explained in detail by Todd Bradley from C4 Waterman Part 2 [1:46m]: Download
icon for podpress  The stand up paddle explained in detail by Todd Bradley from C4 Waterman Part 2 [1:46m]: Download

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13 Responses to “The stand up paddle explained in detail by Todd Bradley from C4 Waterman Part 2 with Video”

  1. Srfnff 1Srfnff

    Evan – Your two part series on paddling is outstanding…maybe even priceless because the info isn’t easy to come by. Most people don’t know what they’re talking about because there are so few around who are SUPing. I’m totally down with what Todd is saying and trying to practice the principles he’s laying down. I say practice because even though I wince every time I do it I bang the rails fairly often, especially in critical situations that I can’t control as well. I also thought his discussion re dihedral in the paddles was interesting and I’d like to know more about that.

    Speaking about knowing more…where did you get the material you affixed to the edge of your paddle? I’d like to get some of that to help preserve my paddle and my rails. Also, after watching your video I purchased a paddle grip from the C4 website. I contacted Kellie who arranged for cheaper shipping than the website quoted so kudos and thanks to Kellie and C4 for working with me on that.

    Keep up the great work. I think Andy hit the nail on the head, there is a lot of “inside” info here that you can’t find anywhere else.

  2. Evan Leong 2evan

    Srfnff – Thanks a lot for your comments. I’ll ask Todd to elaborate on the dihedral more. Do you have any specific questions that you want answered? Post them here and I’ll ask him to answer them.

    I got the stand up paddle edge stuff from It costs $1.50 per foot and you need roughly 3 feet. It takes 5-10 minutes to put on and saves your rails.

    I’m trying to get more inside stuff from some of the other stand up paddle surf pioneers here in Hawaii…stay tuned…

  3. Srfnff 3Srfnff

    Thanks Evan, I’ll order the paddle edge stuff today. No more black scuffs or scratches on my rails! I also liked the way Todd showed where the paddle should be in relation to the board for the most efficient stroke. (You know when you guys lifted the board up and he held the paddle next to the rail and you shot looking up at the bottom of the board.) I guess if I had a question for him it would be to talk more about efficiency in paddling. It seems to me that the guys who are the most efficient, are the most relaxed looking. But they look like they’re getting the most return for the energy spent. (Not very insightful on my part, just a subjective observation.) Thank Todd for me too for taking the time to meet with you and produce this valuable info. His knowledge and analysis (and your website) have really helped me understand more about SUP. Take care.

  4. Andy 4Andy

    Hi Evan,

    I agree with Srfnff your video footage is spot on… to be able to get a behind the scenes look at how C4 works and why the product is designed the way it is really helps when looking at equipment.

    I would love to see so of the other paddle surf designers talking about their kit… being here in the UK where the sport is just starting out it is fantastic to be able to check your site to see whats happening in the Islands.

    I am staying tuned for sure

  5. Evan Leong 5evan

    Srfnff – I think all your questions on that can be answered on the 2 How to Stand Up Paddle Instructional DVD’s coming out from C4 Waterman. I think they’re out in the next 2 weeks. Call Kellie at C4 and preorder it at

  6. Evan Leong 6evan

    Andy – I’m working on more participation as we progress. I really only started on this site about a month ago and only started posting in the last 2 weeks. There’s nothing like hearing the who, what, when, where, how and why direct from the ‘horse’s mouth’ and every time I get the opportunity to have those discussions I’ll do my best to make them available to everyone.

  7. DW 7DW

    If you ever get to Maui, please interview Jimmy Lewis.

    Cool to read why paddles are designed the way they are. Although the reasons make some sense, I’m not sure we really paddle in a way where that curved shank matters. In my thinking, I’d have to engage the blade X distance from the center of the board to clear the wide bottom of the blade, then allow the blade to come closer to the board mid stroke, then force the blade away from the board at the end of the stroke to clear the wide bottom again. Otherwise you’d ding the rail. I suspect, we all stroke straight, with paddle far enough away from the board to clear the entire width of the paddle regardless of shape, or we’d all bang the rails.

  8. Srfnff 8Srfnff

    I will call Kellie and pre-order the DVD. I saw the preview here and it looks very pro and comprehensive. Kellie just cut shipping charges in half on my last order and is great to work with btw. Malama pono.

  9. Evan Leong 9evan

    DW – I was in Maui in May for a kiteboarding trip. That’s where I got the pics here from

    Jimmy was explaining the rocker on the kiteboards he makes and why he put the concave on the bottom. The first time I was able to ride upwind was on a Jimmy Lewis Model III 145 cm kiteboard. I later got a Jimmy 6′00″ kite surfboard and the same result…a super easy and intuitive riding experience.

    I loved the Jimmy Lewis 11′ stand up paddle board for the earlier stages of my SUP learning. I moved from a 12′x 26.5″ epoxy Munoz surfboard to a 11′11″ x 29.5″ SOS Big Red to Pono Bill’s red 12′1″ x 31″ Surftech Laird to the Jimmy 11 in the first 2 months doing SUP. The Jimmy 11′ actually surfs really well for an 11′ board when you change to the 9.5″ True Ames Farberow Flexy Fin. I moved from the Jimmy 11 to the C4 10′6″ and 10′ currently. Now I want to try a custom board to see the difference. The good thing is that as long as you keep the stand up boards in good condition the resale value stays good.

    I email Jimmy pretty often and I wanted to know what his next boards are going to be. Here’s his last email:

    Hi Evan, Nice to hear from you. I hope you’re doing well. I’m here in Vietnam right now making 4 new models. There will be a 10′6″ and a 9′10″ that will be just like the 11′er in design and also a 10′4″ and a 10′8″ that will be like the 10′er in design. The 10′4″ will be 28.5″ wide and 4 ” thick and the 10′8″ will be 29″ wide and 4.25″ wide. The “11′” models will be for slight lighter/smaller people that the 11′er is a little to big for and the “10′” models will be for people who the 10′er is just a bit too small for. I’m hoping that we might have some in Hawaii by December. Thanks for writing and talk to you soon. Aloha, Jimmy

  10. michaelf 10michaelf


    Cool stuff, realized that on the left I am going shallower than on the right, hence more turn to right Vs. when paddling on the right I keep fairly straight.

    Nice Job on the blog and keep it coming

  11. Evan Leong 11evan

    Michaelf – Isn’t it cool when you realize these things and then make a change to get better immediately? Check out the C4 instructional video at I saw parts of it and it is very technical with good tips. I can’t wait to see the whole thing.

  12. Andrew Fatal 12Andrew Fatal

    How does the C4 boards and paddles differ from the Surftech Laird Hamilton boards and paddles?
    Is there a difference?
    Can someone help me?

  13. outofhtefire 13outofhtefire

    [..YouTube..] Hey Bradley
    Less volume on a paddle for bigger waves ?
    Is that correct..?thanks for the info… Dave

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