With the recent trend of kayaking and canoeing picking up, many newbies are willing to try their hand at paddling a canoe. That being said, kayaking is not merely about paddling and rowing. As fun and easy as it might sound and look, kayaking does involve some technicalities that require practice. The most basic thing that one needs to learn when starting to kayak is to sit in it. You cannot only get into a kayak and start paddling. It is essential that you get familiar with how the equipment works and how to position yourself inside the kayak in the correct manner. This is important for the safety of both the paddler and the kayak itself.
Before you go ahead with learning to position yourself in your kayak, it is essential to understand the need to have the right size of a canoe. Size and weight requirements are especially more important for people with more significant and broader bodies so that you can adjust inside the boat safely and securely. There are many kayak dealers such as Bay Sports who offer a wide variety of kayaks. You can click here to choose one that fits your preferences.
Setting up the Kayak
The first step to kayaking is to assemble your kayak correctly. To do that, make sure you place your equipment on soft flat land that offers support and stability and allows you to set up your kayak appropriately. The main areas that need assembling and adjustments in a kayak are your back brace and foot pegs. You need to adjust them such that they are secure in their positions but allow you to get in and get out of the kayak comfortably. To ensure that get in the kayak and test the sitting according to the guidelines ahead and make necessary readjustments if needed.
Get Into the Kayak
Once your kayak is assembled with the back brace and footrests in place, get into the kayak and test if you can get in quickly. It is recommended that you use the same footwear that you will be wearing on your regular kayaking trips. Do not place your foot on the backrest or else you will end up damaging it. Stand in the kayak such that your feet are directly in front of the footrests. If you feel you are unable to get in this position quickly, your kayak might need readjustment.
Once you can get into the kayak comfortably, place yourself on to the seat of the boat. Once sitting, adjust your backrest such that your lower back is perpendicular to your buttocks and your back has enough support to let you paddle comfortably. Your back should neither be leaning backward nor should it be forcing you forward while paddling. Once your backrest is adjusted appropriately, place your feet on the foot pegs such that your knees are bent outwards and upwards. Your heels should be angled toward the center of the canoe, and your toes should be pointed upwards with feet balls right in contact with the foot pegs.
It is recommended that you practice sitting, paddling strokes and getting in and out of a kayak a couple of times on the land before you head on to your first kayak trip.