Free Style Fundamentals: Stern Squirts

With all this water there are some great places to play on the river. New features and stronger eddy lines make ample opportunities to take your kayak from flat to vertical. The stern squirt is a classic move and still one of my all time favorites. If you’ve been having trouble getting your boat vertical, take a look at this video and keep these key points in mind as you watch.

  1. Notice how much I lead the move with my body. My head and shoulders are turned in the direction I want to go. Both hands are completely on the right side of my kayak.
  2. If you watch closely during the slomo part in the middle, you’ll notice that after I plant my paddle in the water it doesn’t move toward the front of my boat. Instead, I use my legs to move the boat toward my paddle.
  3. I do lean back a little bit because I’m doing this in flat water and I want to get the paddle all the way to the stern of my kayak. If you watch closely however, you’ll see that as soon as the boat starts to move I sit up. One of the biggest mistakes I see people make when they’re trying to learn to stern squirt, is they throw their bodies back. To make the bow of your kayak come up you need to pull it up with your knees. In order to pull your knees to your chest you need to engage your abs. When you throw yourself toward the stern you actually push off of your feet which drives the bow down. This keeps the boat flat.



I really hope you find this helpful. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. Also, let me know what other techniques you would like to see tips on.


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