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Home > Gear Guides > How should I fit when sitting in a kayak?

How should I fit when sitting in a kayak?

For a proper fit, the cockpit of your kayak should allow you to have firm contact between your kayak and your back, bottom, hips, knees, and feet, without feeling scrunched or feeling like you have too much space.

Some paddlers prefer a larger cockpit, while others opt for a more secure fit. There are pros and cons to both designs, so keep these points in mind when making your selection:

  • Larger: If you are a big and tall paddler, a larger cockpit is easier to enter and exit. For individuals of any size, a larger cockpit allows more storage for carrying gear.
  • Smaller: Smaller cockpits make your river kayak easier to maneuver in rough conditions, but there is not much room for storage if you are on a multi-day trip.

Try to test out kayak cockpits before making a final purchase. When you sit in a kayak, you should be able to brace your feet against the foot pegs and thigh braces. These features can be added to kayaks that don’t have them, and some models feature adjustable foot pegs and thigh braces, so the same recreational kayaks can be used by more than one person.

Visit your local Sun & Ski Sports shop for expert advice about kayak cockpits.

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