Kayaking for Beginners

Kayaking is a sport that’s easy for beginners to learn. It’s simple enough for most beginners to catch on to fairly quickly. Within only a few hours, you can be enjoying your time paddling along. There are multiple kinds of kayaking, too, ranging from flat water kayaking to sea kayaking and even whitewater kayaking.

All the Information You Need to Know to Get Started with Kayaking

Whether you plan to go on a local kayaking trip or have an excursion planned to some of the most beautiful places in the world, such as kayak tours in Lagos, you’ll need to have basic kayaking skills before you start out on a kayaking adventure.

We’re launching a kayaking for beginners, these are the top ten tips boaters should have before they go out on the water.

1 – Sign Up for Lessons

First, it’s important to find a quality instructor and sign yourself up for kayaking lessons. You may not think that you need these. After all, how difficult can it be to paddle a kayak?

It isn’t rocket science, but you could find yourself stuck paddling in circles at first if you don’t have correct coaching. Lessons will help prevent you from losing time and help you with things like learning how to paddle and how to recover from tipping over.

The lessons aren’t even all that expensive. There are online search functions that can help you find locations near you, with all the details about lessons for beginners and what they include, how much they cost, and more.

2 – Dress for the Water Temperature, Not the Ambient Temperature

You may be tempted to light summer clothing because it’s a warm, sunny day. However, the temperature of the river or stream could be much colder.

Be sure that you select clothing that is designed for the water temperature, not the temperature of the air. If you fall in the water, you’ll be quite happy that you opted to wear a wet suit, kayaking gloves, and waterproof clothing, instead of lighter clothing.

3 – Select the Correct Boat

There are numerous types of kayaks on the market, with kayaks available for different ages, body types, and types of water.

You may opt to get started in recreational kayak that’s designed for the exact type of water that you’ll be going out on. If you’ll be paddling on a lake, you’ll likely want to think about renting a kayak that’s designed for flat water. Kayaks that you can sit on top of tend to be a really good option for beginners, as they’re quite easy to paddle and very stable.

4 – Never Kayak Without a Flotation Aid

It’s important to wear a flotation device no matter whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been kayaking for years.

You’ll read this in any type of beginners guide for kayakers. These buoyancy aids are similar to life jackets, but they provide you with much more movement around your neck and arms, so they’re better designed for kayaks. You never know when you could wind up having issues, even if you’re a strong swimmer.

Kayaking schools will always provide you with a buoyancy aid, but if you’re paddling on your own, we suggest that you supply your own or consider renting one from a local center.

5 – Sit Correctly in the Kayak

Taking the time to learn to sit correctly in a kayak will help make it much easier when you begin paddling. It’s true that your kayak may have a very comfortable backrest, but don’t use it as an excuse to slouch. Do your best to sit up as straight as possible, with your lower back and buttocks at 90 degree angles to each other.

There are foot pegs on both sides of your kayak. Your feet go here. Point your toes outward, with your heels pointed towards the center. Bend your knees up and out, and allow your thighs to make contact with the braces designed for them.

6 – Take Time to Hold the Paddle Correctly

It may seem simple, but it’s actually vitally important to learn to hold your paddle before going out on a kayak. An instructor will be happy to work with you to teach you correct paddle technique and form, so that you’re holding the paddle in both hands, at the correct angle, and putting it in the water correctly. Using the paddle correctly will help ensure that you can move through the water in the direction that you want to go, at the speed that you’d like to go.

7 – Always Pack Extra Clothing

This is another simple fact that’s easy to forget about. Always make sure to bring extra clothes, even if you don’t think you’ll get wet. You may find that you’re quite grateful for having those clothes stashed away.

8 – Learn How to Rescue Others, as Well as Yourself

The first rule is knowing how to care for yourself. You may not capsize on your first, or even second, trip out – but it’s still good to know what to do. Be sure to stay with your kayak if it capsizes. Take the time to go through several capsize drills with your teacher. They’ll help you to learn how to get back in your boat after things go wrong.

9 – People Are More Important Than Things

It can seem simple, but often when someone panics, it’s easy to forget to keep one another safe, and that people are most important. It really doesn’t matter if you lose a paddle, items off your boat, or the boat itself. Keep your paddlers safe, and remember that boats can be replaced. People, on the other hand, cannot.

10 – Don’t Kayak Alone

One of the most important things for new kayakers to learn is how important it is not to go out on their own. There’s never good weather or good timing to hit the water alone, no matter how experienced you are. Instead, make sure that you always go out with a buddy, so that you’ll have someone to help you out if you get into a tough situation.

How long should a Kayak Paddle be?

Kayak, the name of the most exciting and thrilling experience on the water. You must be thinking; a kayak must be comfortable. But hold on a second, it’s fun, but it’s not an easy one. You need to select first the perfect boat for you. And an ideal ship gives you the comfortable feel of the water. After that, the measurement of a paddle comes under the light. The boat must be adjustable, but a paddle needs to be of a perfect size because this will give your hand and shoulder an ideal balance for kayaking. And your kids must not lay back from enjoying the kayaking. So whenever you choose a boat, you must keep your eyes on the measurement of the paddle.

Now you must be thinking about the perfect measurement of a paddle. And for this, you need first to take the diameter of your kayak boat.

A kayak boat comes in four different types. They are

• Recreational kayak

• Performance kayak

• Touring kayak

• Whitewater kayak

Now let us give you a short description of those kayak boats. The first one is –

Recreational kayak boat

This type of boats is usually coming in a short size but wide so that you can feel relaxed and comfortable there. It is often 26 inches to 30 inches usually.

Touring kayak boat

Such boat comes with the more compatibility. It gives you capacity. But the size is narrower. But typically it is longer in size. Usually, it comes in 22 to 26 inches long.

Performance kayak boat

These boats are usually 19 to 24 inches long. They are long in size and durable also. They come with a narrow hull.

Whitewater kayak boat

Such boat comes with a little space inside. The width won’t be as long as the height of the paddler. So it needs to be more congested.

Kayak Paddle

For paddle section, the width of the boat must be an essential factor. And if you are a part-time paddler, then it is the most crucial part. And as a tourist, your body weight and height will widely play a role in selecting a paddle.

Keep an idea in your mind that wider boats need longer paddles. But not all the time.

Paddle Length – Depending on Kayak Length

Now let us go through a measurement table that will indicate us how to select a paddle. According to the body size of the kayak and the fitness of a kayak are –

If the body of the kayak is 22 inches, then you need to choose the paddle of 180-190 cm approximately. Then if it’s 24 inches, then you need to go through 190-200 cm. If it is 26 inches, then you need to choose 200-210 cm.

If your torso size is 28 inches, then you can have a paddle of 200-220 cm long. You can choose the up to 38 inches torso, and the paddle must be 250 cm approximately. So there are the minimum and primary measurements of a paddle for a kayak.

You can quickly figure out whether the kayak paddle is right for you or not by bending your elbow up to a 90-degree angle. And you can easily do this by holding the paddle in your hand directly. If the paddle rests to the two-thirds of the meeting of shaft and blade, then your paddle is perfect. But your body fitness depends more on the paddle.

Paddle Length – Depending on Paddlers Type

Like there are different types of kayak boats, there comes a variety of paddlers also. They come in various taste and view. Some are described below-

Athletic paddler

They want the paddle to be short, and the blade must be wide. This type of paddle gives you the extra horsepower for kayaking.

Taller paddler

As they are tall, they want their paddle to be long also. And the blade must be wide so that they could easily move the paddle.

Smaller paddler

They probably prefer a paddle whose blade’s surface area is small. But if you want to paddle more in water then you can go with the larger one.

Small glove needs small shaft paddle. It’s a universal truth because it will give you a better swift in kayaking.

So I think you have got some basic techniques for choosing your paddle for a kayak. Now it’s also vital that your water body depends on your paddle also. Lakes and rivers need some type of paddle, where sea needs a different kind of paddle. So it’s a thing of research which water body you are kayaking, and the paddle choosing must be according to that.

Paddle Length – Depending on Water Types

The water in lakes and rivers are very calm and relaxed. Here you can spend a lot of time and some quality time with your dear one. So here you can choose touring paddle. These sorts of paddle come with small swift but lightweight. It gives you the feel of camping, touring as well as river riding also. So it would be a good choice for choosing a touring paddle.

A paddle with oval-shaped shaft gives you the comfort of paddling. Because you need not look at the water and easily could move the paddle. It gives you more satisfaction than a round shaped shaft in water.

Water is another important fact for a paddle. If your water is a swallow one, then you can choose a plastic paddle. It will overcome the sand, rocks and many more things of water. You can take recreational paddle also if you don’t want to spend much time in the water. This paddle is ideal for trips, fighting, and children too, though they don’t want to remain in water for much time.

For moving water, you can have performance paddle. They come with high durability and capacity so that you can handle the kayaking in your own way. The weight of those paddles is light. Fiber composite paddles are best for long trips as well as for the one who has a shoulder problem. They will provide you a lightweight feeling in the paddling section.

Whitewater paddles are much more different than other paddles. Because those paddles are created for the one, who loves adventure. And they come in a size of a shorter shaft with durable nature. Those paddles give the adventurous feeling to the paddlers.

So I think you can now easily choose the paddle. Happy kayaking!