AskDefine | Define paddle

Dictionary Definition



1 small wooden bat with a flat surface; used for hitting balls in various games
2 a blade of a paddle wheel or water wheel
3 an instrument of punishment consisting of a flat board
4 a short light oar used without an oarlock to propel a canoe or small boat [syn: boat paddle]


1 propel with a paddle; "paddle your own canoe"
2 play in or as if in water, as of small children [syn: dabble, splash around]
3 swim like a dog in shallow water
4 walk unsteadily; "small children toddle" [syn: toddle, coggle, totter, dodder, waddle]
5 give a spanking to; subject to a spanking [syn: spank, larrup]
6 stir with a paddle

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. A two-handed, single-bladed oar used to propel a canoe or a small boat.
  2. A double-bladed oar used for kayaking.
  3. Time spent on paddling.
    We had a nice paddle this morning.
  4. A slat of a paddleboat's wheel.
  5. A paddlewheel.
  6. A blade of a waterwheel.
  7. a meandering walk through shallow water, especially at the seaside.
  8. A kitchen utensil shaped like a paddle and used for mixing, beating etc.
  9. A ping-pong bat.
  10. A flat limb of turtle or other sea animal, adapted for swimming.
  11. In a sluice, a panel that controls the flow of water.


two-handed, single-bladed oar
double-bladed oar used for kayaking
time spent on paddling
slat of a paddleboat's wheel
blade of a waterwheel
meandering walk through shallow water
kitchen utensil
ping-pong bat
flat limb of turtle etc.
in a sluice, a panel that controls the flow of water

See also


  1. To propel something through water with a paddle, oar or hands.
  2. To row a boat with less than one's full capacity.
  3. To spank.
  4. To walk or dabble playfully in shallow water, especially at the seaside.


to propel sthg through water with a paddle, hands or similar instrument
to row a boat with less than one's full capacity
to spank
to dabble playfully in shallow water

Extensive Definition

A paddle is a tool used for pushing against liquids, either as a form of propulsion in a boat or as an implement for mixing.

Canoe/Kayak Paddles

Materials and designs

Paddles commonly used in canoes consist of a wooden, fibreglass carbon fiber or metal rod (the shaft) with a handle on one end and a rigid sheet (the blade) on the other end. Paddles for use in kayaks are longer, with a blade on each end; they are handled from the middle of the shaft.
Kayak paddles having blades in the same plane (when viewed down the shaft) are called "un-feathered." Paddles with blades in different planes (such as in the image) are called "feathered". Feathered paddles are measured by the degree of feather, such as 30, 45, or even 90 degrees. The paddle in the image to the right is feathered around 15 degrees. Many modern paddles can be adjusted by the user for feathered or unfeathered settings. The shaft is normally straight but in some cases a 'crank' is added with the aim of making the paddle more comfortable and reduce the strain on the wrist. Because the kayak paddle is not supported by the boat, paddles made of lighter materials are desired, it is not uncommon for a kayak paddle to be two pounds (32 ounces) or less in weight.


The paddle is held with two hands, some distance apart from each other. For normal use, it is drawn through the water from front (bow) to back (stern) to drive the boat forwards. The two blades of a kayak paddle are dipped alternately on either side of the kayak. A paddle is distinguished from an oar in that the paddle is held in the user's hands and completely supported by the paddler, whereas an oar is primarily supported by the boat.

Other types

On mechanical paddle steamers, the motorized paddling is not done with a mass of paddles or oars but by rotating one or a few paddle wheels (rather the inverse of a water mill)
Racing paddles also have special designs. They are generally less flat and are curved to catch more water which will enable racing paddlers to maximize the efficiency of their stroke.


See also

paddle in Aymara: Ñuqiña
paddle in Czech: Pádlo
paddle in Danish: Paddel
paddle in German: Paddel
paddle in Spanish: Remo (instrumento)
paddle in French: Pagaie
paddle in Ido: Pagayo
paddle in Italian: Pagaia
paddle in Japanese: パドル
paddle in Norwegian: Padleåre
paddle in Polish: Wiosło
paddle in Simple English: Paddle
paddle in Finnish: Mela
paddle in Swedish: Paddel

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

agitate, agitator, amble, asperge, barge, beat, beat up, beater, bedew, bespatter, besprinkle, birch, bowl along, bundle, cane, catch a crab, churn, churn up, club, clump, convulse, cut a crab, dabble, damp, dampen, dash, dew, disarrange, discompose, disquiet, disturb, douche, drag, dress down, droop, eggbeater, excite, feather, feather an oar, ferment, ferule, flax, flog, flounce, flurry, foot, footslog, fret, gait, gallop, give a dressing-down, give way, halt, hide, hippety-hop, hitch, hobble, hop, hose, hose down, humect, humectate, humidify, irrigate, jiggler, jog, jolt, jump, larrup, lather, leather, lick, limp, lock step, lumber, lunge, lurch, mince, mincing steps, moisten, oar, pace, pandybat, peg, perturb, perturbate, piaffe, piaffer, plod, ply the oar, pole, prance, pull, punt, rack, rattan, rile, ripple, rod, roil, roll, roughen, row, row away, row dry, ruffle, ruler, rumple, sashay, saunter, scuff, scuffle, scull, scuttle, shake, shake up, shaker, shamble, ship oars, shoot, shuffle, sidle, single-foot, skip, sky an oar, slink, slither, slobber, slog, slop, slosh, slouch, slowness, spank, sparge, spatter, splash, splatter, sponge, spray, sprinkle, stagger, stalk, stamp, steering oar, step, stick, stir, stir up, stomp, straddle, straggle, stride, stroll, strolling gait, strut, stump, swagger, swash, sweep, swing, swirl, switch, syringe, tan, thrash, tittup, toddle, totter, traipse, tread, trim, trip, trot, trouble, trudge, upset, velocity, vibrator, waddle, wade, walk, wallop, wamble, water, welt, wet, wet down, whale, whip, whip up, whisk, wiggle, wobble, work up
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