Everything You Need to Know About Kayaking

There is no better feeling than being in the sea in a kayak and exploring the beautiful landscape that the world has to offer. When you are travelling in a kayak, your bottom is below the water level as the waves are hitting your boat. If you are a beginner, this might give you the impression that kayaking in the deep sea is unsafe. But the adrenaline and fun that comes with kayaking overshadows the dangers of the sport.


Once you build your skills, you will realize that a kayak is the safest boat that you can use in the sea. Kayaking is a fun, low impact sport which requires tactile skills, knowledge and understanding of the surrounding environment. The best thing about a fishing kayak is that it brings you closer to nature. It is a great way to exercise as you get fresh air and look at the world from a unique eye view. Kayaking for one hour can burn over 350 calories while building your arms, leg, back and core muscles.

What is kayaking?

Kayaking is a sport where people use a specialized boat known as a kayak in different kind of waterways including whitewater rivers, lake and sea. You can learn kayaking within minutes and get to the water to have fun. Some people enjoy kayaking in the ocean, but you need to be skilled before taking your kayak to dangerous waterways. Today, kayaking has evolved to include racing, recreational and fishing activities.


What is a kayak?

A kayak is a small boat which is propelled by double bladed oars and is commonly used by one person. A kayak is seen as a sport equipment because it is often used in aquatic races. Kayaks come in different types and sizes depending on their specific use. However, most kayaks have an enclosed deck which covers the legs.

Therefore, your legs will be warm and dry when you go kayaking in the river. Today you can find different types of kayaks like whitewater kayaks, recreational kayaks, touring kayaks and surf kayaks. Sit on top kayaks like recreational kayaks are the best for beginners because they are easy to get in and out and are stable. You can use a sit on top kayak for recreational sport and fishing.


Kayaks originated in North America where they were first built by the Inuits, 4000 years ago. During the early years, kayaks were made from animal skins including whalebone. Today, kayaks are made of plastic called polyethylene which is tough and flexible. Depending on the material used in constructing a kayak, prices can range from $250 to $1500. However, if you are a beginner it is important you rent the kayaking equipment first.

Beginners guide to kayaking

Before you go kayaking in the deep sea it is important you learn the basics of the sport first. You can quickly learn the basics of kayaking by paddling leisurely in an enclosed lake or river. Because these waterways are relatively calm, you don't need much skill or experience to have fun kayaking.

Using an instructor can help you learn the basics of kayaking as well as find the right type of kayak. For beginners, it is important you start with a recreational kayak because they are short, stable, affordable and can maneuver easily in the water. The basic gears that are needed for kayaking include

  • a life jacket or personal flotation device (PFD), 
  • a kayak and
  • a paddle. 

If you are going for camping trips while kayaking, there are waterproof bags which you can use to stuff in food.

The following how- to guide will help you learn the basics of kayaking.

Learn how to wear a PFD properly

To stay safe in the water, it is important that you invest in a life test commonly known as a personal flotation device. Today, type 3 PFDs are widely used in kayaking because they are comfortable and lightweight.

For beginners, wearing a PFD can be confusing because they have many buckles and straps which can confusing while wearing. An instructor can show you how to properly wear a PFD and adjust the straps and buckles.


Learn how to sit, adjust and get into a kayak

To properly control the kayak in the sea, make sure you know how to adjust the backrest, thigh braces and foot support. In addition, it is important for kayakers to learn how to get into a kayak. This will prevent them from getting wet while in the sea. For beginners, recreational kayaks.

Learn how to hold a paddle

Most beginners who have no prior experience kayaking, often find themselves holding a paddle incorrectly. You will find them holding the paddle facing backwards or upside down. The first step of learning how to hold a paddle is learning its various parts. A paddle consists of the shaft where kayakers hold and the blade which you use to push the water while kayaking.

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The next step is to make sure the paddle is facing the right direction and not backwards. This will help determine the power you will generate while stroking the kayak. The final step is to learn how to hold a paddle. Your hands should be centered and hip wide on the paddle.

Learn how to forward stroke a kayak

When you are learning how to paddle a kayak, it is important you learn how forward stroke work. Most beginners are unaware that kayaks are propelled by the torso and not just the arms. You should learn how to forward stroke a kayak by moving your torso so that you get less tired, and have more power while paddling.


Myths about kayaks

Most people think that people who choose to kayak are dare devils who are looking for an adrenaline rush while heading off a waterfall. However, the reality is that kayaking is a fun and relaxing activity which can be done in quiet waterways and enjoy the serenity and beauty of the surrounding landscape. Kayaking is a workout in itself, most people think their legs, arms and back will ache afterwards. The truth is that you will not feel any pain the next day after kayaking.

Some people think that kayaking is a sport reserved for the young people only. In reality, kayaking is sport activity that can be done by anyone, regardless of their age and experience. Some people think that a kayak is an expensive equipment which a few can afford. Kayaks can be relatively cheap depending on the features you are looking for.

Another myth is that you need a boat trailer to transport a kayak. That is not the case unless you have many kayaks you need to transport. A kayak can easily fit on top of your car or the back of your truck.

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