Man, no good deed goes unpunished. DP I thought you were being nice about the whole thing. Steve what you're failing to realize in your resistance training metaphor is the sheer amount of repetition in paddling strokes while surfing vs kite boarders and umbrella pumpers. I've never counted the actual strokes per session, but I'm pretty damn sure the number of strokes per arm will vastly outnumber the amount of times a kiter(is that what you call it?) essentially does a pull up or one decides to furiously pump an umbrella. And that's what's going to eventually wear and tear on your shoulders. But hey, wear the gloves, catch a few and please give us a ride report.
Ok I know I'm gonna get bashed no matter what but I actually tried these out due to having a lot of arthritis in my joints. I thought they might make it easier on my shoulders that always ache after a session. The problem with them is we naturally hold our fingers together when paddling since we don't come with webbed hands. The gloves to be effective at all, and I didn't see any really, you have to think constantly on keeping your fingers spread to maximize the amount of water you pull with your hands. It's uncomfortable to keep them spread when paddling and with my arthritis it actually made my hands get stiff faster than if I didn't use them. So in conclusion I'd have to say they aren't worth the trouble. Take the 30 bucks and get you a spare leash.
Just a note on finger spread/paddle technique.... it's actually the most efficient to have your fingers slightly spread apart - not together. I used to swim competitively and it's what we were always taught. Also, when you stroke, don't just pull/push your hand straight back. You get more power if your hand followed a path similar to that of a hour glass or "S" shape.
I used to have a pair of 'webbs' when I was young too. They do seem to work as far as getting more power per stroke. But even when I was 12 or 13, I felt like too much of a kook wearing them.
That's great paddling advice. With how hard we got to battle to chase shifty peaks on east coast beach breaks, paddle efficiency has been a big focus of mine. The path described here is very good advice. I focus on digging deep and burying my elbow then pulling down and towards the center of body at a 45 then rotating palm outwards to the other 45 and kicking back and out on the follow through. I get the most out of each paddle making it a compound movement rather than quantity of strokes where some dudes just slap at the water like they were doing a broked doggie paddle. Not sexy.
Well... I know a very good surfer from my home break by the name of P Griffin who always wears webbed gloves and gets an obvious paddling advantage from them, the shoulders have to be strong enough to take the greater strain. The advantage will be greater when paddling in white water and most useful when accelerating hard to catch a wave.