P stands for POSITION on the river in relation to the eddy line. When crossing eddy lines, either entering or exiting, aim for the ‘top’ of the eddy. You will need to anticipate the movement of the board resulting from a combination of the current and paddle strokes when setting up. Therefore the starting POSITION is critical for the overall success.
A stands for ANGLE of the board in relation to the eddy line. Although 45 deg across the current is a common way to conceptualize the optimal angle, I find 90 deg to the eddy line is more precise. This requires the paddler to have the ability to visualize the eddy line during the approach so they can ‘square up’ to it.
V stands for VISION. Throughout the maneuver maintain the focus of the eyes on a spot a couple of feet above the water and approximately two board lengths ahead in the anticipated direction of travel.
E stands for EDGING of the rails. Lean harder on a rail to increase the edge angle. Turning across eddy lines requires edging to the inside of the turn; similar to the banking of the wings of an airplane. The timing of the edging is critical. When entering an eddy from the current wait until ⅓ to ½ of the board crosses the eddy line before edging onto the inside of the turn (upriver side). When exiting an eddy into the current pre-load the inside edge (downriver side) during the set up and maintain pressure on it throughout the turn. Paddling and bracing on the edging side helps.
S stands for SPEED. Speed is required to prevent stalling out in the eddy line. Speed engages the fins which will track or arc based on the edging of the board. Generate speed with purposeful canted forward strokes on the approach and ride the momentum across the eddy line. Incorporate the other skills previously discussed to accompany the momentum into the turn.
S stands for STANCE, the foundation for all SUP maneuvers on the river. For pivot turns across an eddy line I prefer a surf stance and for carved turns a staggered stance. Step back the foot matching the turning side, this facilitates edging on the inside of the turn. For a right turn step back the right foot and for a left turn step back the left one. Regardless of stance, for maximum stability, stay as low as possible by flexing the ankle/knee/hip joints rather than bending at the waist.