How to choose the right kayak paddle to determine exactly

How to choose the right kayak paddle to determine exactly

How to choose the right kayak paddle to determine exactly? Kayak is one of the most intimate pieces of equipment you own as a paddler. That’s right, a paddle is a device that your hands orbit all day and a device that drives your kayak over water. You want to know that you’ve made the choice that works best for you and that you can count on your next trip – whether it’s an evening cruise at a local pond, a weekend package for bass fishing on State Park Lake, or a mission across a windswept bay.

The paddle next to the kayak has the greatest impact on water performance. Even a short tour includes thousands of strokes, so the right paddle can do it all. To choose a kayak paddle, you need to consider as How to choose the right kayak paddle to determine exactly four basic ideas:

  • Length: The width and height of the boat determine the length of the paddle.
  • Materials and price: Lightweight materials improve performance but raise the price of the paddle.
  • Blade choice: The size and shape of your paddle blade affect its overall effectiveness in water.
  • Shaft choice: A bent shaft or feather-covered blades can also improve paddle efficiency.

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Paddle images

Determining the right size (length) of your paddle is surprisingly easy. The wider the boat, the longer the paddle. Your height is also an important factor, especially on a narrower boat: longer paddlers need longer paddles.

Thus, the size of the paddle manufacturers according to these two factors (paddles are dimensioned in centimeters, although boats are measured in inches). The chart below is Werner Paddles. It’s a good idea to check the website of any brand you’re considering, as there may be slight differences in the information below:

pick a kayak paddle size: 

Paddler Height Boat Width
Under 23″ 23″ to 28″ 28″ to 32″ Over 32″
Under 5′ tall 210cm 220cm 230cm 240cm
5′ to 5’6″ tall 215cm 220cm 230cm 240cm
5’6″ to 6′ tall 220cm 220cm 230cm 250cm
Over 6′ tall 220cm 230cm 240cm 250cm

Tweener Sizes

If you fall between two sizes, it is usually better to shorten. Either size would probably work, but you’ll save a few ounces on a shorter paddle. However, if you are in relation to a shorter body, the extra distance is useful and you should go for a long paddle.

example of a low and high angle kayak paddle

Low- and High-Angle Paddles

Low-angle strokes are made with the shaft only slightly tilted — your upper hand stays below shoulder level. This stroke is ideal for relaxing, refreshing kayaking in flat water.

The effect of the larger angle is the inclined axis and path near the boat. Stroke requires precision and fatigue if precision is lacking. It requires a shorter paddle and a wider blade than the small-angle paddle used in the shot.

The paddles are designed for either small or large corner paddles, and the size charts for each are different. The diagram above applies to kayaking.


an arrangement of kayak paddles made from different materials

Blade Materials

Saving weight increases both performance and price. Because you raise your steel shaft higher, lightweight materials pay better for fatigue. Different blade materials also differ in how well they transfer energy to your stroke.

“Plastic” is a general term here. There are variations in the technical data, such as “polymer” or “polypropylene” or plastic mixtures filled with nylon or fiberglass. Each of them can produce modest performance (and price). And “composite” is carbon fiber and fiberglass.

Plastic/Nylon Blades

A leader in cheap price, plastic is often chosen by leisure paddlers who find it indestructible. However, it can crack and decompose when left in sunlight. The resilience of plastic can prevent it from tearing in half, but the resilience of water sacrifices the effectiveness of your stroke.

Fiberglass Blades

In the middle of the price range, these offer excellent performance and durability. A fiberglass blade lighter than plastic may crack, but it usually does not crack completely. Rigid fiberglass blades are effective in water.

Carbon-Fiber Blades

If you’re willing to pay a top dollar for peak efficiency, use carbon fiber. Really light, it is also very rigid and offers excellent energy transfer with every stroke.

Shaft Materials

Plastic shafts are rare. Aluminum, the most wallet-friendly shaft material, is durable and serviceable. It can also get really cold or hot, so you may want to glove it before grabbing it in cold weather, and you need to keep it in the shade when it’s hot.

The carbon and fiberglass shafts are durable, strong, and light. Combining one of these shaft materials with lightweight composite blade materials provides the lightest and most efficient paddle option – and the price reflects this performance.

Blade Design

example of an asymmetrical dihedral kayak paddle

Most of me later today have an asymmetrical halved shape.

The asymmetrical blade is relatively narrow and shorter on one side. This reverses it so that the surface area of ​​the blade is smoother as it protrudes through the water.

You will see a double-edged blade from the rib in the middle of it. This allows water to flow evenly and evenly on both sides of the blade. Without this, the blades will oscillate more, which can make direct monitoring difficult.

Because they are lighter, narrower blades are suitable for long kayaking periods; This is especially useful for a full-day tour or a multi-day excursion.

Wider blades provide fast and effective shocks to help you accelerate quickly. Canoe surfers often prefer them for this reason. Some special fishing trays also have a J-shaped notch in the steel for picking lines and hooks.

Shaft Design

an example of a straight and bent kayak paddle shaft

Straight or bent shaft? The inverted shafts have a “bent” section that puts your hands at a more comfortable angle during the stroke, minimizing discomfort and fatigue in your joints. If you change the bending shaft from a straight shaft roller to a paddle, plan a day in the water to adjust the impact technique.

examples of a two-piece kayak paddle and a four-piece kayak paddle

Two or four parts? Both are designed to break down for easy storage. Models with a four-piece axle simply have shorter parts, so it’s a good idea to hike somewhere with a portable kayak or take your paddle on the plane.

Small diameters give a less tiring grip for paddlers with small hands. If you can’t touch your thumb and forefinger together when you take a paddle, this is you. The shafts are not several diameters: they are either constant diameter or small.

example of feathered and non-feathered kayak paddles


The blades are either feathered or similar. Matched or featherless blades are aligned with each other. The feathered blades are not on the same level; they are skewed relative to each other, which reduces wind resistance in steel left out of the water.

On almost all paddle shafts, you can rotate them to fit or feathers. They also allow you to easily adjust the number of feathers, usually every 15 degrees. With a few, you can adjust them to the angle you want.

Note: The terms “right-hand drive” and “left-hand drive” refer to which hand rotates the shaft during the shutter. Most paddles allow it to be placed in either direction.

How to choose the right kayak paddle to determine exactly FAQs 

What are the best paddles for kayaking?

The Top 8 Best Paddles for Kayaking in 2021:

  • Aqua-Bound Tango Kayak Paddle.
  • Werner Camano Kayak Paddle.
  • Bending Branches Whisper Kayak Paddle.
  • Aqua-Bound Sting Ray Kayak Paddle.
  • Wilderness Systems Pungo Kayak Paddle.
  • Perception Universal Kayak Paddle.
  • BKC KP224 Kayak Paddle.
  • Pelican Poseidon Kayak Paddle.

Is it better to have a longer or shorter kayak paddle?

Because the strokes are vertical, the paddle should be shorter. Whitewater paddlers and speed lovers often wear large angles. Low-angle kayaking is relaxed and designed for long days on the water. Your strokes are horizontal, so the paddle should be longer.

Do kayak paddles make a difference?

The paddle next to the kayak has the greatest impact on water performance. Even a short tour includes thousands of strokes, so the right paddle can do it all. … Shaft selection: A bent shank or feather-covered blades can also improve paddle efficiency.

What happens if you use a paddle that is too long for kayaking?

When you use a paddle that is too short or too long, you can overload yourself and work more than is necessary to increase speed and keep the kayak on the track. If the length is not correct, the hands tend to move along the axis, leading to the development of blisters.

What is the best kayak for a beginner?

The best kayaks for beginners:

  • Sevylor Quikpak K1.
  • Wilderness Systems Pungo 120 Kayak.
  • Borneo Tahe Rigid Touring Canoe-kayak.
  • Ocean Duo Rigid Canoe Kayak Rotomod.
  • Lifetime Beacon Tandem Kayak 12′
  • Driftsun Teton 120 Hard Shell Recreational Tandem Kayak.
  • Ocean Kayak Malibu Tandem.
  • Old Town Dirigo 155 Tandem Kayak.

How much do kayak paddles cost?

The price of kayak melodies can range from $ 40 to $ 500. The blade material is usually the most important factor in the shaft material through the paddling cost, which can also affect the price. The cheapest paddles available have an aluminum shaft and fiberglass blades and cost around $ 40.

Do kayakers float?

All kayaks paddle. … When kayak paddles float, they “float” slower than your kayak. If you drop a kayak into the water, you will look helpless as you and your kayak drift downstream.

How do you hold a kayak paddle?

You place the knuckles on the right frame at the top of the blade. And keep a loose grip on the other side. The width of the handle is such that when you put the center of the paddle.

Why are kayak paddles offset?

The paddle blades of the kayak paddles are arranged asymmetrically to reduce wind resistance. … The wind is the main reason for the twisting of kayak melts.

What is the lightest-weight kayak paddle?

The Werner Kalliste is the lightest kayak paddler on our list. If you’re looking for a paddle you can barely feel on the water, Tilt is a great choice.

What is the key to entering or exiting the kayak without tipping over?

First and most important, proper placement of the boat is key. Use your kayak paddle to stabilize by setting it perpendicular (90 degrees) to the kayak across the back, behind the seat. Half of the paddle should be lying across the boat and the other half should be on the shore.

Why are kayak paddles rotated?

The paddle blades on kayak paddles are arranged asymmetrically to reduce wind resistance. An alternative is to turn the paddle when it is lifted out of the water. In the long run, however, the turning movement proves to be unergonomic. … The wind is the main reason why the kayak paddles are twisted.

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