So we row?

No, we paddle! On a technical standpoint, rowing and paddling are very different.

Rowing uses oars that sit in an oarlock, which is attached to the gunnel. Rowers sit backwards in the boat so that they face the back of the boat (stern). The oars provide leverage to transfer human effort into a forward motion.

Paddling, however, is the opposite. The paddles aren’t attached to anything and paddlers sit facing the front of the boat. Paddling is involved in sports such as in kayaking, Hawaiian outrigging, SUP, canoeing, and dragon boating. Basically, they face toward the direction of travel. Paddles displace water by human effort.

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