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Paddle Signals To Use on Trips

Oftentimes on trips paddlers cannot hear verbal directions from the Trip Leader.  Therefore, it is helpful to have paddle signals which communicate to the participants on the trip.

Command From

Trip Leader

Paddle Signal

Graphic of

Paddle Signal


  (Stop momentum)

 Paddle held horizontally


 (Go forward to designated location)

 Paddle held vertically

 Back Paddle/ Slow Down

(Slow down if used while touring, paddle backwards when in surf zone)

 Paddle held horizontal with ends moving up & down alternately

 Paddle to right or left

(Go in direction leader’s paddle is pointing)

 Paddle pointing upward to the right or left


(The speed of the wave changes from emergency (fast wave) to gather-up (slow wave)).

 Paddle pointing upward and moving from side to side

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