Getting inside a kayak is not a complex task. Beginners tend to tumble and fall in the beginning. But, it’s only a matter of getting proper guidance and practice. Kayaking is a sport of balancing. The sitting position maintains the center of mass and helps you balance your kayak on the water. So, before hitting the waters, it is vital to learn how to enter a kayak and sit properly. Read the steps below to know more -
Steps to Follow
Step 1: Set the kayak
First, check the ground for rocks - they can damage the boat. Then place the kayak on the smooth areas of the shore - we don’t need holes when we get into the water. The bow, the pointed front part of the kayak, should face the riverside. Place the paddle parallel and close to the kayak to pick it up quickly.
Step 2: Stretch your muscles
In kayaking, you will sit for hours and use your arms and shoulders to paddle. Stretching will help loosen the muscles and perform with ease.
Step 3: Stand with the kayak placed between your legs
Your standing position is important. The toes of your left leg and right leg must point towards the bow and riverside. This position will help you properly sit inside the cock pit. Sitting from the left-hand side or right-hand side of the kayak adds pressure on the cockpit. The kayak will topple, or you will slip if the weight is applied on a single side.
Step 4: Now sit inside the kayak
Gently bend your knees and sit inside the cock pit. Make sure you don’t sit on the backrest. Place your legs inside the deck where the top part of the toe touches the footrest, and the knee gets locked below the knee braces. The gap between your legs must resemble the shape of a kite or a diamond. If there are loose ends, tighten your backrest and footrest. The more intact you sit, the easier it gets to paddle.
Step 5: Close the cockpit with a spray deck
The spray deck is an integral part of clothing you wear to cover the cockpit. It conceals the hollow space and prevents water from coming in. Lift the back end of the spray deck first and set it on the rim of the cockpit. Gradually pull the sides of the spray deck, stretch it and lock it on the front end. At last, run your fingers through the corners of the rim to check the fitting of the spray deck.
Step 6: Move to see if you are comfortable
Lean back and forth, move your legs, turn around a little to see if you are comfortable.
You are now ready to launch your kayak into the waters. Remember to take this pocket guide with you on your basic kayaking course. You can impress your instructors!