Kayaking Tips I Wish I Knew as A Beginner

Kayaking is a great summer activity that can provide you with hours of fun. Many people, however, don’t start kayaking until they have some experience. Kayaking can be a great way to get outdoors and enjoy some peaceful time on the water.

But if you’re new to the sport, it can be helpful to know a few basic tips before hitting the open waters. Knowing these beginner kayaking tips can help make your kayaking experience more enjoyable and safe.

Kayaking Newbie

Kayaking Tips That I Wish I Had Known as A Beginner

1. Wear the correct clothing

When kayaking, it’s important to wear the correct clothing. This includes clothes that will keep you warm and dry. It’s also a good idea to wear sunscreen and a hat to protect your skin from the sun. In addition, it’s a good idea to bring a change of clothes in case you get wet.

2. Wear sunscreen

Even on cloudy days, you need to wear sunscreen when kayaking. The sun’s UV rays can damage your skin and increase your risk of getting cancer. Make sure to apply sunscreen liberally and often, especially if you’re going to be out on the water for a while. You don’t want to end up with sunburn while kayaking.

3. Use a spray skirt

A spray skirt is a piece of material that goes around your waist and helps keep water out of your kayak. If you don’t have a spray skirt, you may get wetter than you want to be. Make sure the skirt fits snugly around your waist and doesn’t fall down when you’re in the kayak. Using a spray skirt can help keep yourself and your belongings dry.

4. Stay aware of your surroundings

When kayaking, it’s important to be aware of your surroundings at all times. You don’t want to run into anything or anyone while you’re out on the water. Make sure to always use caution when kayaking and be aware of your surroundings. You never know what you might run into. So stay alert and stay safe.

5. Check the weather

Before heading out on a kayaking trip, it’s important to check the weather conditions. You don’t want to go out on the water when it’s windy or raining, as it can be dangerous. Bad weather kayaking can result in overturned kayaks, hypothermia, and other dangers.

6. Take breaks

Kayaking can be a lot of fun, but it can also be physically demanding. If you’re not used to kayaking, you may find yourself getting tired quickly. Make sure to take breaks often and drink plenty of water.

This will help keep you safe and healthy while kayaking. In addition, it’s important to take a break if you start to feel overwhelmed or frustrated. Kayaking can be, without a doubt, a lot of fun, but it’s not worth risking your safety just to finish the trip.

7. Know your limits

It’s important to know your limits when kayaking. You don’t want to push yourself too hard and end up getting injured. If you’re a beginner, start out by kayaking for short periods of time and gradually increase the amount of time you spend on the water.

By doing this, you’ll help ensure that you’re safe while kayaking and that you’re not pushing yourself too hard. There are incidents of people getting injured or even dying while kayaking, so it’s important to be aware of your limitations and to stay within them.

If you’re a beginner it’s also important to choose a good kayaking spot. You do not want to kayak out in the ocean until you’re confident, until then it’s best to stick to shallow waters and rivers.

8. Have fun

The most important thing when kayaking is to have fun. If you’re not enjoying yourself, then there’s no point in doing it. Make sure to pick a route that you’re excited to explore and take your time while kayaking. The more relaxed you are, the more fun you’ll have.

Kayaking can be a great way to explore your surroundings and to have some fun. So relax and enjoy yourself while out on the water.

9. Be prepared

Before you go kayaking, make sure to pack the necessary items. This includes things like sunscreen, a life jacket, and a spray skirt, as mentioned above. By being prepared, you’ll minimize the chances of something happening while you’re out on the water.

Make sure to also pack snacks and drinks, especially if you’re going to be out for a while. This will help keep you energized and hydrated while kayaking.

10. Know your route

If you’re going to be kayaking in an area that you’re not familiar with, make sure to research the route beforehand. This will help ensure that you’re safe while kayaking and that you don’t get lost. In addition, it’s a good idea to tell someone where you’re going and when you expect to be back.

If something does happen while you’re kayaking, they’ll be able to notify the authorities and help search for you. By being prepared and knowing your route, you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable kayaking experience.

11. Use the right kayak size

When choosing a kayak, it’s important to select the right size. If you choose a kayak that’s too large or too small, it will be difficult to paddle, and you’ll be more likely to get tired quickly.

Make sure to choose a kayak that’s the right size for you and that fits your body type. This will help make kayaking easier and more enjoyable. Kayaks come in all shapes and sizes, so take your time to select the right one for you.

12. Use the right kayak paddle

In addition to choosing the right kayak, it’s important to use the right paddle. If you’re using a paddle that’s too big or little, it’ll be tough to paddle, and you’ll get fatigued fast. Make sure to use a paddle that’s the correct size for you and that fits your body type.

This will help make kayaking easier and more enjoyable. Paddles also come in all shapes and sizes, so take your time to select the right one for you. For beginners, it is advised to choose a paddle between 210 and 230 cm that is made of fiberglass or carbon fiber.

I recently wrote a guide on choosing the right kayak paddle and listed a few of the best paddles. You can check that guide out by clicking here.

Kayaking Safety Tips for Beginners

Kayaking is a great way to explore your surroundings and have some fun. But like anything else, there are some safety precautions that you need to take into account. Here are ten kayaking safety tips that will help keep you safe while enjoying this activity.

1. Bring supplies

It’s important to bring the necessary supplies with you when kayaking. This includes snacks and drinks, spray skirt, life jacket etc. By being prepared, you’ll minimize the chances of something happening while you’re out on the water. When you are in the water, you cannot go back to the car or home for forgotten items.

2. Don’t kayak in bad weather

Although kayaking can be a great activity to do in bad weather, it’s not always a wise decision. If there is thunder and lightning, or if the water is too rough, it’s best to stay off the water. You don’t want to put yourself in danger by kayaking in bad weather.

This is because kayaking can be a dangerous activity, and it’s important to take precautions when the weather is bad. Wait for a better day to get out on the water.

3. Always use a life jacket

This is probably the most important kayaking tip that I can give. You should never kayak without wearing a life jacket. Even if you’re an experienced kayaker, things can happen quickly on the water, and you may find yourself in need of a life jacket. Make sure your life jacket fits properly and is comfortable to wear. Being prepared for the worst can help ensure your safety while kayaking.

4. Use the right gear

In addition to wearing the correct clothing, it’s important to use the right gear when kayaking. Gears like a spray skirt and PFD (Personal Floatation Device) will help keep you safe while kayaking. Make sure to also familiarize yourself with the gear before using it.

5. Don’t kayak alone

It’s always a good idea to kayak with someone else. This increases the safety factor and ensures that there is someone there to help if something goes wrong. In addition, if you’re kayaking in an area that you’re not familiar with, it’s a good idea to have someone with you who knows the area.

6. Don’t over-exert yourself

When kayaking, it’s important to remember not to over-exert yourself. This is especially important if you’re not used to kayaking or if you’re a beginner. By overexerting yourself, you can put yourself in danger and also make it difficult to paddle. Take it easy when kayaking and avoid pushing yourself too hard.

7. Stay hydrated and eat healthy foods

Kayaking can be a strenuous activity, and it’s important to stay hydrated. Bring plenty of water and snacks with you when kayaking. It’s also a good idea to eat healthy foods so that you have the energy to paddle. Avoid eating foods that are high in sugar or fat, as they will only make you feel tired and sluggish.

8. Be familiar with basic safety procedures

In case of an emergency, it’s important to be familiar with basic safety procedures. This includes knowing how to properly wear a life jacket and how to signal for help.

By being familiar with these procedures, you can ensure that you are safe if an emergency arises while kayaking. There is nothing like being in a safe and familiar situation during an emergency.

9. Take a safety class

If you’re new to kayaking, it’s a good idea to take a safety class. This will teach you the basics of kayaking, how to stay safe while kayaking and what to do in case of an emergency. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so make sure to take a safety class before heading out on the water.

10. Use common sense

This is probably the most important kayaking tip of all. If something doesn’t feel right or if you’re not sure how to do something, ask for help. By using common sense, you can minimize the chances of something happening while kayaking.

11. Use a kayak paddle leash

Kayak paddle leashes serve as an important safety precaution for kayakers. They help to keep your paddle attached to your kayak, which can prevent you from losing the paddle if it falls overboard. In addition, they can also help to keep you safe by preventing the paddle from hitting you in the head if it falls out of your hands.

Kayaking is a wonderful way to spend time in nature while also having fun. Make sure to relax and enjoy yourself while kayaking. Paddle at your own pace and take in the sights and sounds of your surroundings.

It is also a fantastic way to get out into the world and discover new locations. By following these tips, you’ll be able to kayak safely and enjoy your time on the water.

Tips For Kayaking In Harsh Water Conditions

It is unlikely that you will always have perfect kayaking conditions. Sometimes you will encounter harsh water conditions that make the experience more difficult and dangerous. And being a beginner, you may not be familiar with the right techniques to handle these conditions.

In this section, we will discuss some kayaking tips that will help you paddle safely and effectively in harsh water conditions. Kayaking in harsh water conditions can be a daunting task, but if you know what to expect and how to prepare for it, you can make the experience much more enjoyable. In this article, we will provide some tips for kayaking in harsh water conditions.

First and foremost, always be aware of the weather conditions and forecast before heading out on the water. If you know that there is a chance of bad weather, make sure to dress appropriately and pack extra supplies. It is also important to be familiar with the terrain you will be kayaking in, as this can help you anticipate any obstacles or hazards that may be present.

If you are kayaking in rough water conditions, always try to stay in the middle of the river or bay. This will help you avoid any large waves or swells. Additionally, make sure to keep a close eye on your surroundings and be prepared to take evasive action if necessary. If you do find yourself being thrown around by the waves, make sure to hold on to your kayak and paddle tightly.

Next, remember to always stay calm and never panic. If you start to feel overwhelmed or out of control, take a few deep breaths and reassess the situation. Finally, always be sure to practice safe kayaking practices, such as wearing a life jacket and never drinking alcohol while kayaking.

Following these tips will help make kayaking in harsh water conditions a much more enjoyable experience. With these tips in mind, you can kayak in harsh water conditions with confidence.

Tips On How To Find The Best Kayaking Location For Beginners

Kayaking can be enjoyed in many locations – you don’t have to go far from home to find a great spot. There is no such thing as the perfect kayaking spot, but there are a few things you can look for to help you find a good location.

1. Water condition

The first thing to consider is the water conditions. Look for a spot with calm waters so you can practice without feeling too much stress. If you’re a beginner, it’s also important to find a spot with little to no current. This will ensure that you can easily maneuver your kayak and won’t constantly be fighting the current.

2. Distance from shore

The next thing to consider is how close the shore is. As a beginner, you’ll likely want to start out close to shore in case you need to bail out or get back on land quickly. Try to find a spot that’s within swimming distance in case of an emergency.

3. Accessibility

Another thing to consider is how accessible the kayaking spot is. Look for a spot with easy-to-find parking and a short walk to the water. This will make it easier for you to get to the kayaking spot without having to hassle with getting your kayak to the water.

4. Safety

It’s also important to find a spot that is safe for kayaking. Make sure the area is free of obstacles and debris and that there are no strong currents or underwater hazards.

Here Are A Few Tips to Help Get Started Kayaking:

1. Wear a life jacket

As mentioned above, life jackets are a must. Even if you’re an experienced kayaker, it’s always important to wear a life jacket when kayaking. This will keep you safe in case of an accident.

2. Use a kayak paddle

When you’re first starting out, it’s important to use a kayak paddle. This will help you control your kayak and make it easier to move around.

3. Stay near the shore

As a beginner, you’ll want to stay close to shore until you feel comfortable kayaking in open water. This will help you avoid getting lost or stranded in a remote location.

4. Don’t try to do too much

It’s important not to push yourself too hard when you’re first starting out. Try to take it easy and build your skills gradually. Pushing yourself too soon can lead to accidents and injuries.

5. Get a kayak instructor

If you’re really serious about learning kayaking, it might be a good idea to get a kayak instructor. This will help you learn the basics quickly and safely.

6. Take a kayaking class

If you don’t want to get an instructor, you can always take a kayaking class. This will give you a basic introduction to kayaking and help you build the skills you need to be successful.

That’s it! These are the basics that you need to know to start off as a beginner kayaker. Kayaking is considered by many to be a very rewarding activity, so don’t be afraid to give it a try!

Paddling Techniques for Efficient and Graceful Kayaking

Although kayaking seems like a simple activity, there are a few techniques that you need to know to paddle efficiently and stay safe.

1. Use a relaxed grip on the paddle: When your grip is too tight, it restricts the movement of your arms and limits your ability to paddle smoothly. Let your arms move freely to increase your speed and control.

2. Use a strong forward stroke: To move efficiently through the water, use a strong, smooth forward stroke. Paddle close to the boat and keep your arms parallel to the surface of the water for the most power.

3. Use a gentle backstroke: The backstroke is useful for slowing down or for backing up. Paddle gently and smoothly to avoid creating waves that can unbalance the kayak.

4. Use a sculling motion: This technique is used to steer the kayak in any direction. To scull, hold the paddle near the end and move it in a circular motion.

5. Lean into the turns: When turning, lean in the direction of the turn to keep the kayak stable.

6. Keep your elbows close to your body: This will help you paddle more efficiently and reduce the amount of energy you use.

7. Stay calm and relaxed: While kayaking, it’s important to stay calm and relaxed while on the water. This will help you stay in control and avoid any dangerous situations.

These are just a few basic tips to help you get started with kayaking. For more advanced techniques, be sure to consult a paddling guide or instructor. With a little practice, you’ll be kayaking like a pro in no time!


Kayaking is a wonderful and entertaining experience, but it can also be hazardous if you don’t know the fundamentals. Thousands of people kayak recreationally every year, and with a little bit of practice, you can be one of them.

The above kayaking tips will assist you in paddling efficiently and remaining safe while on the water. Have a great time and be cautious!

Vanessa Hopkins

Hi, I'm Vanessa. Long-time kayaker who's proud to be part of this community. I strive to provide our visitors with insightful guides with the aim to improve their kayaking experience. I've been working with SunshineKayaking for over 5 years, providing world-class services.

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