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A Quick Guide to Kayaking for Beginners

Around 21 million Americans kayak regularly, which shows how popular this water sport is.

Kayaking is a fantastic way to hone your skills, explore new places, and sneak in your daily exercise. But, like with every sport, it can feel overwhelming knowing where to begin. Perhaps you’ve toyed with the idea of kayaking and you want advice on how to get started.  

Sounds familiar? No worries; you’ve come to the right place. Here’s our guide to kayaking for beginners. 

Grab Your Kayaking Gear

One of the top kayaking tips is gathering the right supplies. Decide what type of model you want; for instance, you may want an inflatable model or check out fishing kayaks for under $1,000.

You should also stock the kayak with plenty of water, dry bags for your valuables, and sunscreen, especially on warmer days. And you mustn’t forget to wear a lifejacket for your protection.      

Know How to Hold Your Paddle 

Whether you’re taking kayaking lessons or paddling solo, learning how to hold your paddle is essential. To do this correctly, take your paddle with both hands and center it on top of your head. Then, lower your paddle, and make sure it creates a straight line, so they both slide through the water effectively.  

Launch Your Kayak 

The most exciting part of your kayaking trip is launching into the water. Place the kayak in the shallow water, stand over it, and slide into the cockpit feet forward. Then, use your paddle to move the kayak in the direction you want to go.     

Learn the Basic Strokes 

A major tidbit of kayaking advice is learning the basic strokes. The first stroke is moving forward where you turn your torso and sink your blade fully on one side. Then, rotate your body and focus on pushing against the paddle’s shaft as you move.

You should also learn the reverse stroke, a lifesaver if you want to turn around. Simply immerse the blade next to your hip and push with your lower hand, so you move backward. 

Know the Safety Precautions 

Like with most outdoor activities, following safety precautions is a must. Regardless of how confident you feel, always bring a paddling buddy who can offer assistance in an emergency. Also, if you haven’t had much training, choose a realistic distance limit so you’re not at risk. 

Further, before arranging your kayaking trip, check the weather forecast beforehand and do your hazard research, so you avoid areas that have a stronger current or hidden rocks that could hit your kayak.   

Top Kayaking for Beginners Tips 

Hopefully, our guide to kayaking for beginners will help launch your new passion. 

To have a successful introduction to kayaking, it’s important to come equipped with the right gear and learn to hold your paddle correctly. You should also familiarize yourself with the main safety precautions and practice the basic strokes for a successful session. Good luck with your new venture!  You should also stock the kayak with plenty of water, dry bags for your valuables, and sunscreen, especially on warmer days. And you mustn’t forget to wear a lifejacket for your protection. 

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