The finished paddle has three basic parts--the grip, the shaft and the blade. The grip is ergonomic, or designed to reduce a paddler's hand fatigue, and can be custom shaped to the user's hand. The shaft transfers the force of the paddler's arm movement to the blade. Blades vary in style, but most popular are the Bentshafts, a style based on paddles used by canoe racers. The taper and curve of the blade determines the effectiveness, speed, and smoothness of the paddle's action.