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Bow Stalls

Being able to perform a bow stall is a basic building block for doing freestyle moves on flat water. It also teaches important boat control skills that come in handy in all playboating situations.


  1. Use a double pump to drive your bow under the water ##link to article.
  2. With the front blade, stop the rotation of the boat once it is vertical.
  3. Keep both paddle blades in the water, and use body motions to control the movement of the boat. If you stand up (lean back), the boat will go more vertical. If you tuck forwards or pull with your knees the boat will flatten out. Side to side control is via your hips and feet.


Hints and Tips

  • You are aiming to make a triangle with the boat, your arms and the water. This is a naturally stable position, and with practice is stable without much input from you.
  • Using something solid, like a poolside or jetty can be a great help in initially finding and experiencing the balance points associated with the bow stall.