A kayak is a type of small boat that is thin enough to fit a person’s body width without much more additional room on the sides. It’s usually used by one person, however, there are also multi-person kayaks that can be taken out with friends or family.
The design of a kayak is telling to the purpose which it serves. There are many different kinds of kayaks available today. In addition to discussing what is a kayak, we’re also going to discuss which kinds are available and why you should get on one today!
What is a Kayak? What is a Canoe?
Sometimes, a kayak is confused for a canoe. The main difference between a kayak and a canoe is the position of the person who’s riding it. In a kayak, the rider uses a double-bladed paddle to pull through the water. The rider alternates sides with the paddle to propel forward.
In a canoe, the rider will use a single-bladed paddle to propel the boat forward. Also, kayak riders usually sit inside the boat while canoe riders tend to kneel.
Both kayaks and canoes are used to compete in water sports. The kind of boat depends on the type of water conditions and competition.
What Kinds of Kayaks are Available
Now that you know what isn’t and what is a kayak, you’re faced with the decision of which type of kayak is best for you. There are several different types of kayaks to choose from, and you’ll find that there’s definitely one that fits with the type of kayaking you want to do.
Whether you want to compete, kayak long distances, or just relax on the water, we’ll discuss the details and purpose of each type below.
Sit On Top Kayaks
Sit on top kayaks are great for beginners and people just discovering what kayaking is. These types of kayaks are very stable which makes them easier to paddle. Sit on top kayaks are also very versatile; able to be used on the ocean, in lakes, rivers, or canals. We recommend this type of kayak to someone who wants something they can grow with, as this kayak is great for beginners to expert level kayakers.
As the same implies, this type of kayak is designed to be used at sea. It is longer and thinner than the touring or sit on top kayaks but offers a lot more speed and agility. The overall performance of sea kayaks is better than most others. However, unless you’re planning to kayak at sea frequently, you probably won’t need such performance factors.
A touring kayak offers similar capabilities to sit on top kayak. The big difference is really just seat placement. Touring kayaks are made to offer complete stability on the water. They also are comfortable to sit in and easy to get in and out of, making them a great option for older riders. For someone who wants to get out and enjoy a full day of relaxation on the water, this is the ideal type of kayak.
White Water Kayaks
White water kayaks come in a large range of paddling types that will depend on what type of white waters you’ll be rafting in. These kayaks are offered for all types of ability levels from beginner to expert.
Inflatable kayaks are the ultimate choice for those who want to travel with their kayaks. They are perfect for easy storage and transport. Inflatable kayaks are designed for leisurely trips paddling on calm waters. You can inflate one of these in a matter of minutes, and they’re very easy to paddle.
The Top 10 Reasons to Make a Kayak Your Primary Vessel
If you want to give kayaking a try but are still looking for a reason to take the jump, here are our top ten reasons to grab a kayak and get out on the water today!
1. Getting Close to Nature
One of the most attractive aspects of kayaking is the ability to get close with nature every time you get in the water. More so than other outdoor activities, kayaking allows you to get very close to nature and experience a variety of landscapes. Because you’re heading out on the water, you get to see sights that very few people who stay on land get to enjoy.
If you’re trying to get into kayaking as a hobby, you’ll love the peaceful time it allows you to spend away from the noise, pollution, dust, and congestion of life on land.
2. Kayak to Bond with Friends
While one–person kayaks are popular, you can also purchase or rent a multi-person kayak and enjoy a day out with friends. Kayaking with friends and family is a great way to bond with loved ones in a beautiful environment.
You may also meet other friends who kayak and get involved in competitions or weekend getaways together. While kayak may seem like an introvert’s dream activity, it’s also a great way for extroverts to meet people who share an interest.
3. Be Adventurous While Relaxing
The great thing about kayaking is that it can take you anywhere. It’s such an adventure. However, adventures don’t always have to be the dare-devil, thrill-seeking kind. If you’re someone with an adventurous spirit without the thrill-seeking attitude, kayaking is a great activity to allow you to explore new places. There are few recreational activities that allow you to both adventure and relax at the same time.
4. Kayaking is Great Cardio
Kayaking is an amazing aerobic exercise to get blood pumping throughout your body. For just one hour of kayaking, the average person can burn 500 calories. This is much more than other cardio workouts. The best part? You’ll actually enjoy doing it!
Kayaking is a great way to lose a few extra pounds while also boosting your cardiovascular health.
5. It’s Also Great For Muscle Tone
It’s obvious that kayaking frequently will get you firm, toned arms. Your biceps will love this workout. But, did you know that kayaking also does wonders for toning your midsection? The tummy is the hardest part of the body to work out, yet kayaking targets it perfectly. The rotational movements from paddling will hit your abdominal muscles and give you a toned tummy in no time.
6. Kayaking Relieves Stress and Tension
One of the most immediate health benefits you’ll notice when you begin kayaking is how much less stressed you feel. The combination of being outside in nature and getting a great workout make the optimal environment to reduce tension.
Research has also shown that kayaking helps benefit an overall positive attitude, self-satisfaction, and self-confidence. What more could you ask for!
7. Do it Any Time of the Year
The great thing about kayaking is there is no limit to when you can or cannot do it. In the warm summer months, take a kayak out onto the water. Being around the water will expose you to cooler air, and you can take a dip whenever you’re breaking too much of a sweat.
In the cold winter months, warm up in a kayak. Taking to the water while bundled up in a coat will for sure work up a sweat as you start getting the kayak moving. Paddling fast will help you get the cardio in while keeping your body warm enough to enjoy the winter scenery from outdoors.
8. Enjoyment for All Ages
Getting out on the water in a kayak is a great experience for kids and adults of all ages. Because there’s not a lot of technical movements or equipment needed, even young kids can begin kayaking. Because kayaking is a low impact activity, it’s something older folks can still enjoy without too much risk of injury. Nothing is stopping you from getting you and your family started kayaking.
9. Kayaking Can Take You Anywhere
Kayaking can be done on all types of water. Whether you’re around an ocean, lake, swamp, or river, you can take your kayak along with you. If you’re into road tripping, back your kayak up and take it with you to add a new element of adventure to your vacation. Many inflatable kayaks are on the market now, so if you don’t have a large car, you can still pack up your kayak wherever you go.
10. It’s FUN!
In addition to all the spectacular benefits kayaking offers, the biggest reason people do it is that it’s so fun! While you’re on the water, chasing new horizons with friends and family, you’ll have a great time and create lasting memories for years to come.