Canoe the Little River - River Johns Outfitters near Townsend Tennessee


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An Exciting River Experience for Any Age or Age Group!

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The Forward Stroke
The forward stroke is one of the most exhaustively analyzed and debated moves in canoeing. Instructors and Olympic flatwater coaches have heated arguments over its finer points.

1. Wind up the rotation as if you were going to do a forward sweep, but keep the paddle as vertical as possible, not low.

2. When you've wound up as far as possible, push down with the grip hand and arm to bury the paddle in the water. Remember, down with the grip hand. Don't pull back with the shaft hand as many people do.

3. Lift the paddle out of the water when it comes alongside your hips. You've used up your rotation: Get the paddle out of the water for another windup and stroke by lifting your shaft hand straight out to the side and lowering your grip hand across your chest.

Back Stroke
Wind up your torso so that you are looking back over your paddling-side shoulder toward the stern, as for a reverse sweep, but in this case, the paddle is vertical, and your grip hand indicator thumb is pointing out, away from the boat. Your grip hand should be about head level.

Push down with your shaft hand to bury the blade in the water. You will be pushing the non-powerface of the paddle forward through the water. Once the paddle has passed your knees, pick up the shaft hand to take the blade out of the water.

Correction Strokes
You may have seen pictures of a lone canoeist leaving a beautifully straight wake across a lake at sunrise. That guy doesn't switch sides, you think. How does he keep going straight? The answer is simple, if subtle: At the end of almost every forward stroke, the experienced canoeist makes a small correction to adjust the boat's tendency to turn away from the side where power is applied. So what will you do? You will learn the correction strokes: the stern pry for big corrections, and the J stroke for smaller ones. A good way to distinguish between the two is to think of starting from a dead stop. First you will need the pry to check the boat's strong tendency to turn away from you during the initial powerful forward strokes that get the boat under way. Then the J stroke will come into play for smaller corrections as you get up to and maintain speed.

Only the stern paddler (or the solo paddler) does the correction strokes. The bow paddler provides pure forward force without correction.


Our Canoe Season

Starting in May of each year and running through the end of October we are open for your enjoyment 24 hours a day, seven days a week!

Group Pricing
We have many packages available. They range from one person to groups of a hundred or more. Please contact River John and give him the details on your group's planned outing.
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An Exciting River Experience for Any Age or Age Group!