Kayaking can get more exciting when your family joins you on board. But can your kids join you on your kayak too? Let’s learn about kids kayaks here!
Kids and Kayaking
Kayaking, as we all know, is one gripping water adventure. Be it touring, recreational, fishing, or anything else, you can lay hands on specially-designed kayaks, for that matter. Everything is fine until you’ll need to take your kids on a kayak. The water bodies are unpredictable and can be scary too. Can your kids go kayaking? Do they have any appropriate kayaks? Read on to learn about kids kayaks in detail.
Kids Kayaks – are they for real?
You might have heard of taking kids along on a kayak. They usually sit in front of the kayak while their parents or an angler maneuvers the kayak. Is there anything like a kids’ kayak? If you are looking for ways to learn about kids kayaks, we’ve got you covered.
You’ll find a pool of options for kids’ kayaks. Before we head to knowing how to buy kids kayaks, let’s first understand the difference between an adult and a kid’s kayak.
Kids’ touring kayaks are narrow compared to adult kayaks. You need to consider various aspects before picking the appropriate kayak for your child. Have a look at the following buying guide to choose the best one.
Kids Kayak Buying Guide
As mentioned above, kids’ kayaks are slightly different compared to adult kayaks. Also, whenever kayaking is about kids, it mostly happens on slow and gentle or flat open water bodies. The following aspects can help choose the best kayak for your kids.
Kids’ kayaks are shorter compared to adult kayaks. Shorter kayaks are easy to turn, handle and are lighter too. Mostly, there is nothing like choosing the correct length for your kids. These kayaks are predesigned to suit children of different ages. So, you can check for your child’s comfort and pick the right one.
Kayaks for children are usually sized by considering their weight. Most manufacturers provide the weight rating for their kayaks to choose from. You know what to do if there is no such list. If there is, check for your kid’s weight and the ratings to match.
If your child weighs lesser than the ratings, they need to grow to fit in the kayak. If they weigh more than the maximum limit, you might as well look for another kayak. If your kid doesn’t match any kayak’s rating, it’s time for them to switch to adult kayaks soon!
The commonly-found kayak types are sit-on-top and sit-in. Your legs are exposed in the former. So, you can escape easily when needed. Moreover, if your boat flips, there is an arrangement to drain the water. Sit-in kayaks make it difficult to escape from the kayaks in such cases. So, if you need a kayak for your kid, look no further than the sit-on-top model.
This model is extremely simple to get in and get off. They come with enhanced stability and durability. If there’s a case where the boat rolls or an accident, the self-draining holes ensure that there is no water accumulation on the kayak. These are reliable and perfect for kids.
Width and Hull Design
Everyone knows that a kayak’s width has a lot to do with its stability. The logic is quite simple here, the wider your kayak, the more stable it tends to provide. It is best to choose a wider kayak for your kids, considering their safety. Of course, wide kayaks are not so efficient. But efficiency is not what we are looking at for a child’s kayak.
Another factor affecting a kayak’s stability is the hull design. Usually, a double hull or a pontoon hull provides better stability. Pontoon hulls are common but double hulls are a little rare. However, double hull design is the most stable of all.
An additional arrangement to kids’ kayak is a tow rope. Children usually are exhausted soon. What if they cannot paddle anymore or fall asleep while there is still some distance to cover? It is best to attach a rope to pull them back or reach there and help them. Ensure that the rope is at least 20ft. long. Tying a rope might seem silly but is essential for your child’s safety.
A kayak with paddle holders works the best for kids. Paddle holders are little depressions or an arrangement to keep the paddle while on a kayak. Children wouldn’t want to hang on to the paddle all the time. Considering the calm water bodies and the type of kayak, continuous padding is not necessary too. So, this arrangement can hold the paddle conveniently without it falling off or your kid holding it throughout.
Choosing the Paddle
You don’t have to worry about the kayak paddles when purchasing a kid’s kayak. But if you want to buy it separately, ensure that the paddle is lightweight. Adult paddles are long and heavy. So, these are inappropriate for kids for kayaking. You can lay hands on short and less-heavy paddles with rubber blades for your kids.
Frequently Asked Questions about Kids Kayaks
Can my child go kayaking using my kayak?
That depends on your kid’s weight and height. Every kayak meant for kids comes with weight limits. You can learn about kids kayaks from the information above. If your kid crosses all the weight requirements of a child’s kayak, you can consider giving them an upgrade to an adult kayak.
Are there life jackets for kids for kayaking?
PFDs or life jackets are extremely important for everyone on a kayak, irrespective of being a kid or an adult. You can find different sizing and customization options for life jackets in the market. If you don’t want to spend more on changing your kids’ PFDs often, you can consider the adjustable ones that cover-up for a considerable time.
Where should my kids sit if they accompany me on my kayak?
Kayaks come with an arrangement for kids to sit in the front or between two adults. You can stick to that to ensure your child’s safety while kayaking.