Always wanted to go kayaking for the first time? Below you can find some essential tips every beginner should know before heading out and paddle the world!
For starters we would like to say that kayaking is something everybody can do. Whether it is as a sport, means of transportation, or creative way to explore new travel destinations! It is very easy to learn, instant happiness is assured while getting the hang of it, and before you know it you’ll be hooked.
Before you’re able to wander around on the biggest adventures while kayaking, there are a few things we think can help you achieve this goal, our kayaking essentials :
a) Start off in group
Whether it is by taking a lesson, joining a full course, or going on a tour with a certified guide, all of the above are good ways to start of your first adventure. Unless you want to spend your first trip zig-zagging around doing three times the distance than the others are doing, it might be useful to learn from experienced people how to. It’ll enable you to enjoy it a lot quicker and go a lot further. After all, when in group, what’s more fun than seeing some of your friends getting splashed in their kayak?
b) Dress to impress
This time not the girls/boys but the water. Depending on which time and location throughout the year you want to go kayaking the water temperature might differ a lot from the actual outdoor temperature. Making sure you are wearing suitable clothes for the environment you find yourself in is key! It’ll make it all the more enjoyable wearing the right clothes to keep you going on your adventure. Bringing a change of clothes with you on your trip is never a bad idea either. Always expect the unexpected (;
c) Kayak equipment
Continuing on the clothes, there is some specific kayak equipment that is crucial to have. When joining a guided trip or course all of those things should be provided; if not, these are the things you should definitely have with you: a kayak, paddle, buoyancy aid (life jacket), and a spray deck for sit-in kayaks. Sit-on kayaks don’t need a spray deck seen that they have no compartments water can get in.
d) Kayak technique
As is the case with almost every physical activity, there is a certain technique that goes along with it. Not to make it too complicated to start with, we’ll give you 3 things to remember:
- Hold the paddle with both hands with shoulder distance apart while keeping the concave part of the blade facing towards you
- Sit upright in your kayak. Even though it has that nice and comfy back-rest, it is not really made for your lay-in-the-couch position.
- Use your upper body. Numerous people make the mistake of only using their arms to pull the blades towards them resulting in early fatigue and sore arms the upcoming days. By using your torso to help you get your paddle strokes steady and strong, you’ll also be able to keep it up for much longer and much less of the after-soreness.
Last but definitely not least: always keep safety in mind! Even though kayaking is accessible to each and every one of you out there, it is still very important to always keep in the back of your head that you are doing activities on water. Especially when kayaking on open water there are 3 things to check before heading out: tides, wind, and the overall weather forecast. Besides that number one priority is knowing how to rescue yourself and others in case you do tumble over. The chances of this happening on calm and flat water are almost nil but better be safe than sorry, right?
When you can check off all of the above, there’s just one thing left to do: head out and enjoy!
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