Have you ever gone to load your kayak by yourself, only to find that it's…
Kayaking is a fun and challenging water sport that gets you out into nature. It might look easy, but it takes a lot of balance and control to kayak,
especially on rough or choppy water. It’s not just paddling that you need to be good at – you also need to be confident getting in and out of the kayak.
Mounting and dismounting your kayak can be done from various positions, but you must know how to get into your kayak from the water.
This gives you more options when it comes to launching the kayak and means that you can get back in even if the kayak tips or capsizes in deep water.
So how do you get into a kayak from the water? Is there a special way that people aren’t telling you about? Is it easy or hard? These questions rattle in your brain unanswered as you think about your next kayaking session,
Well, no more! Today we are here to help and have put together this helpful guide so that you will be able to get into your kayak from the water. Keep reading to find out how.
Step One – Hold On To The Kayak
Sometimes when you are out on the water you can lose your balance and the kayak can tip. A strong wave or current could make the kayak unsteady,
or it could capsize. You may also be using your kayak on a body of water with no easy launch points, so you have to get into it from the water.
Take a moment to assess your surroundings and look out for any hazards- rocks, trees, strong currents, wildlife, or animals.
Think about how deep the water is- it will be easier to get back into the kayak in shallower water, but it is still possible in deep water.
If you think you can safely swim and drag the kayak to a shallower area nearby then this is a good option.
When you are ready to get back into the kayak, the first thing you need to do is make sure that the kayak is the right way up so that the cockpit is facing upwards out of the water and towards the sky. This should be fairly easy to do.
Once the kayak is the right way up, make sure you keep hold of it. It is very easy to become separated from your kayak in the water,
as it can drift away on a wave or in a current. This puts you in more danger and could prevent you from getting back to your kayak.
Step Two – Make Sure The Paddle Is Secure
Once you have got hold of your kayak with one hand or arm, you also need to make sure that you have your paddle.
This can also easily drift away in the water. If your kayak has a paddle holder then use that, as it will ensure that the paddle does not float away or get lost while you are trying to climb back into the kayak.
If there is no paddle holder. You can either place your paddle inside the kayak or hold on to it as you get yourself back in the kayak.
Step Three – Kick And Lift
Once you have a hold of the kayak and your paddle is secure, it is time to lift yourself out of the water and get back into the kayak.
You do this by holding onto the side of the kayak, the rim, and kicking your feet to propel you out of the water.
Use the momentum along with some pressure on the side of the kayak to lift yourself out of the water.
Make sure you use your muscles and don’t just rely on the kayak, or you could put too much pressure on the side of the kayak and cause it to tip or capsize.
Lift yourself out of the water so that you are lying with your abdomen across the cockpit. You will be safely out of the water and you should be able to regain your balance.
Step Four – Get Back Into Position
Once you are out of the water and lying across the cockpit of the kayak, you can start to move back into a seating position.
You need to do this carefully to ensure that you don’t unbalance the kayak and end up back in the water. Engage your muscles, especially your core, and try to keep your weight as central as possible, making small movements.
Keep one hand on the side of the kayak and move one leg at a time back into the cockpit, then swivel your body so that you can sit back down in your seat.
Once you are in your seat, you might want to readjust the seating position and foot rests in case they were affected when the kayak tipped.
Pick up your paddle, and you should be ready to continue your journey on the water.
Some people choose to take a paddle float out with them. This is a flotation device that you can attach to the paddle to turn the paddle into a floating object.
This can be useful if you become stranded in the water, if you are separated from your kayak, or if you need some extra help getting into your kayak from the water.
You should also wear a personal flotation device when you take part in water activities like kayaking.
If you fall out of the kayak or are involved in an accident then you could sustain an injury that will prevent you from being able to swim or tread water. A personal flotation device will keep you safer in those situations.
You could wear a life jacket or vest – either an inflatable one or a padded one – or you could use an inflatable PFD belt.
Whichever type of PFD you use, there are lots of choices when it comes to products, including lots of low-profile ones that are designed not to hinder your movements when you are out on the water.
Some people choose to take a whistle so it is easier for them to attract attention in the event of capsizing. It’s worth having one just in case.
And there you have it, four steps that will help you get into a kayak from the water. As we have seen, it isn’t as tricky as you first thought, but it does take a little practice to get right.
We recommend practicing in a safe area where the water isn’t too choppy so you can focus solely on getting into the kayak.
Be sure to take someone with you that can assist you should you find yourself in danger. Remember to make your safety a priority and with plenty of practice, you too can get into a kayak from the water!