Riding a kayak, you can feel the complete taste of adventure. You may have seen people are kayaking on the river or a canal or a lake or in other water reservoirs. After watching that, you may think that kayaking is a very easy task. Kayaking is not so hard, and also it is not so easy. Before going on a kayak, you have to know and learn about some basics of it.
Once you know the process of kayaking, then it will be easy for you and you’ll be able to enjoy precious time on the lakes, rivers, or even in Ocean. This is more technical than canoeing.
If you can understand its basics properly, you can enjoy your kayak ride smoothly. Here we’re going to share you about some basics of kayaking. They will help you much to enjoy your first kayaking.
At first, you may think that before start kayaking, you have to own or buy a kayak. It’s not necessary. You can hire a kayak in a lake where lifeguards are always on duty.
Then you have to think about the lessons of kayaking. Though it is not necessary, we will recommend you to know about the lessons. You have to learn technics of kayaking to keep yourself safe and secure on the water.
If you don’t follow the technics, you may get strain on your neck, back, and arms. You can hire kayaks, and other essential equipment’s from lakeside rental booths. In the basic package of a kayak there includes a kayak, personal floatable device (PFD) and a double-sided paddle for each kayaker.
You have to ensure before starting your ride that the heavier person has to seat at the back side of the kayak. And don’t forget to take the PFD before leaving the shore. Otherwise, you may fall in danger on the water.
Where To Go and What Should Take
For the beginners, this is very important to select the best place for practicing kayaking. This won’t be suitable if a beginner goes to the ocean for kayaking at is the first ride.
The best place for practicing is a lake. If you can, go for kayaking with a team. If you don’t like that, rent a kayak pack and go to a lake to learn and enjoy the moment. And you have to be avoiding those rivers which have current.
After that, you have to ensure the commodities to take with you. You have to take plenty of drinking water, snacks, sunscreen, a hat and an extra set of clothing. You can take a dry bag to keep your cellphone and other electronic items safe. These bags are waterproof and sealable.
How to Get in A kayak
To get into a kayak, at first hold the paddle in the center with one hand. Then place it on the kayak a couple of feet away in front of the seat. Then you have to put your other hand on the top of the seat back side.
You have to set your body perpendicularly to the kayak. Then step in first with your foot close to the seat and do this at an angle. The angle should be on such a place where you can sit down immediately without adjusting your feet.
If you want to change your feet at that time, your kayak may start rocking. The paddle stabilizes the kayak as you step in by working as a handrail. You can put weight on both the paddle.
At the dock, you have to choose the perfect place where you can place the kayak nicely closer to the dock. This will minimize the distance of your step down.
Then you have to hold the dock with one hand and use another side to seatback. You have to step in at an angle to sit down smoothly. There are a lot of animations that can help you to place and to get in a kayak.
Proper Paddling Technique
After placing the kayak, you have to know about the appropriate techniques of paddling. Paddles mostly contain their brand logo on one side. To hold the paddle properly, keep the longest edge of the paddle on the top side.
As a result, this will curve down and create a shorter edge on the bottom side. After holding the paddle properly, you have to use your strength to pull that least amount of energy for paddling.
You have to sit up straight and forward your face. Your hands and wrists will remain in line with your arms. Then grip the paddle lightly using your hands approximately shoulder distance apart and equidistant from the center of the paddle to go forward on both sides.
You have to be careful about losing energy. Never over-grip to spend less energy. Try to use your core to make strokes rather than using your arms. You can use rotating your torso from left to right instead of using hands.
Making A Stroke
You have to make strokes on the water to go forward on a kayak using your paddle. For making strokes, you have to rotate your torso to the right while reaching the left side of the paddle.
You have to do this until about its 50% extension. To get more speed and efficiency dip the paddle into the water not more than halfway height of the blade.
After completing this, pull the kayak paddle back firmly while rotating your torso on the other side. On that moment, the left paddle blade should exit the water equally to the line of your hip. The right paddle blade will enter into the water immediately afterward.
How to turn around in a Kayak
It is imperative to turn around in a kayak. To turn around, there are three ways. First, you have to use the paddles like a rudder. Dip the blade in the water on that side where you want to turn around in a kayak.
Drag the paddle blade into the water until you kayak starts to turn around at your desired side. The second option is to use the pedal locating near your feet on both sides. Thus, the powered rudder creates on the rear side.
This works like the first way. And the third way is to utilize the reverse stroke to turn the kayak around. Just paddle backward on that side where you want to turn, and the kayak will rotate on an invisible axis.
Equipment for Kayaking
To enjoy kayaking, you have to take some gear with you. The first one is a kayak. You can choose an inflatable kayak to start practicing. These kayaks are perfect for beginners. These are lightweight and affordable.
You can select a solid body and sit on top kayaks because these are hardly sinkable. The second most important piece of equipment is paddle. You have to choose your suitable paddle based on your height and width of the kayak. For a broader and taller kayak, you need a longer paddle.
Kayaking is a great hobby. This is a good way of exercise too. Before going on kayaking, you must have to know about the necessary parts of kayaking. Besides, don’t forget to take the PFD with you because safety is the most priority matter on the water. We hope this guide will be enough help for you to start kayaking.
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