Hand paddle

From Spanking Art
Jump to navigationJump to search
Example of a hand paddle

A hand paddle is a device worn by swimmers during training. It consists of a curved plastic plate worn over the swimmer's palm and attached over the back of the swimmer's hand with elastic cords. The plate is often perforated with a pattern of holes.

Handle paddles greatly increase the resistance the hand experiences as it tries to move through the water during the effective part of the arm stroke - the part of the stroke described as the "pull".[1] This gives the swimmer considerably more forward propulsion from the arm stroke that does a naked hand, and affords an enhanced kinesthetic "feel" of the pull. It also enhances the swimmer's feel of the "catch", the phase prior to the pull, where the hand turns from a streamlined position to grasp the water and begin the pull.[1] If the hand catches or pulls at an incorrect angle, the increased resistance afforded by the hand paddle will exacerbate the result twisting moment, making the defect clearer to the swimmer.[2] The considerably increased load imposed by the hand paddle on the arm and shoulder can, however, lead to pain and an increased risk of injury, so coaches advise only limited use of paddles and that use be discontinued if the swimmer feels shoulder pain.[2][3]

Paddles are often used with pull buoys to build up arm strength.


The hand paddle was invented by Benjamin Franklin in the 18th century.[4]

Types of paddles[edit]

Different types of paddles include:

  • Finger paddles - Designed to fit on your fingers and built for all strokes, butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke and freestyle.
  • Freestyle Paddles - Designed especially for swimmers swimming freestyle.
  • Han's Paddles - The Original Holed Swimming Paddles.
  • Speedo Original Hand Paddles - One of the first and made for most strokes.
  • Sculling and Vortex paddles - Designed to build upper body strength.[5]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Pull and catch in the freestyle stroke
  2. 2.0 2.1 Masters Swimming: A Manual. Blythe Lucero, Cornelia Bleul-Gohlke. p.49 ISBN 1841261858
  3. Dr. Nicholas Romanov (July 15, 2008) how to select the right swimming paddles for you
  4. SWIMMER magazine
  5. Hand Paddles, Kickboards, and Pull Buoys for Swimmers

See also[edit]


Smallwikipedialogo.png This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Hand paddle. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Spanking Art, the text of Wikipedia is available under a copyleft license, the Creative Commons Attribution Sharealike license.