The Han’s paddles (the small black ones) are smaller and are a great place to start when first using paddles. Because the Han’s paddle does not have a wrist strap it gives you immediate feedback as to whether you are swimming efficiently. If at any time the paddle is sliding on your hand it is telling you that you are not keeping adequate water resistance on your hand and are not propelling your bodyforward.
These can be worn in three different ways but the most popular is with the boxy end at the top of your fingers and the more curved end at the bottom (as illustrated).
This position teaches the hand, wrist, and elbow order of entry and encourages the downward sweep of the hand and high-elbows positioning in order to continually reach for “new” and “more” water with each stroke.
The Strokemaker paddle (which comes in various sizes and colors) is the bigger paddle that we offer. It increases distance per stroke by preventing you from allowing an early recovery (exiting arm from water). The size allows for strengthening of your swimming-specific muscles and aids in water propulsion. It is imperative that you do not take out the wrist tube in order to ensure proper use and to make sure you finish your stroke. You can use paddles in any stroke but be aware that the larger the paddle the more stress is put on your shoulder joint.
Make sure, if you start using paddles, to start out slowly. Only use them for 200-300 yards for the first few sessions and then build upon that. If you have any shoulder pain, stop. Start with the smaller paddles (ie: the black Han’s paddle or the green Strokemaker paddle) and build up. Most recreational swimmers should not go beyond the yellow Strokemaker paddle as the red (the largest we carry) is designed for elite swimmers or those that have been swimming with paddles for some time.