A Complete Kayak Paddle Sizing Guide

kayak paddle sizing

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Whether you are an expert kayaker or a beginner, choosing the right kayak and the perfect kayak paddle is your primary first concern. Kayaking is truly a sport for people of all ages and sizes. The skillful art of kayaking comes down to an individual’s physical fitness, their performance, and endurance levels, and, believe it or not, having the right sized kayak and the right sized kayak paddle.

The kayak paddle is critical to the overall sport of kayaking, since it is impossible to partake in the sport without one, and indeed it needs to be appropriately proportioned to your body in order to be effective and comfortable. Truly, the paddle you choose plays such a significant role in your kayaking comfort level, and your overall energy, performance, and endurance levels as well.

A Guide to Kayak Paddle Sizing

Kayaking is truly a remarkably healthy sport that has fast become a favorite among people of all ages. However, without the proper tools in hand, the overall experience can be an unpleasant one especially if you fail to use the proper sized paddle when rowing. The kayak paddle is utilized throughout the entire kayaking adventure. With every stroke or row, there comes into play the use of your kayak paddle.

Since the bulk of the entire experience comes down to proper paddling, strength, and endurance, having a paddle that is proportioned to your individual size, weight, and height is sure to make your experience far more enjoyable and certainly more comfortable.

Much like a golf club or baseball bat, the kayak paddle needs to be fitted to match your body type and your arm’s length. In order to paddle the waters with stability and balance, as well as for long periods of time, the kayak paddle must afford you the features and comforts that will set the pace for healthy, consistent, and easily patterned rowing. If you are tall, it only makes sense that you will most assuredly have a need for a longer paddle. Likewise, if you are short, then indeed your paddle needs to be of a shorter length and definitely lightweight.

Kayak paddles come in various shapes, sizes and materials and range in length from 210cm to 260cm. Factors that are instrumental in choosing the proper size kayak paddle are your specific style of paddling, your overall height, and the size of your kayak boat. In determining the proper size of your paddle you must first take note, and define your preferred style of paddling. Do you prefer low-angle paddling where the kayaker uses a very relaxed style at a slower pace, or high-angle paddling, where the kayaker uses a much more aggressive style and a much faster pace?

Once you have determined your style of paddling then we move on to the size of your kayaking paddle. The taller the individual kayaker is, the longer the paddle must be (common sense, right?). The perfect formula for determining the perfect paddle is as follows

  1. Determine your style of paddling
  2. Calculate your height;
  3. Measure the width of your boat

Once you have perfected these calculations and measurements, then performing a simple search online for kayak paddle sizing charts will allow you to match all your responses to the specific categories on the chart, and represent to you the perfect kayak paddle for you to purchase and use. Though there are many different designs, styles, and brands on the market today, each of them presents with good features that are sure to provide you with all the performance you are looking for.

Keep in mind when purchasing your paddle, as is the case with any product, that you only get what you pay for. If you choose to purchase a ridiculously cheap paddle then rest assured your productive use of the product will be very short lived and limited. It is recommended that you purchase a paddle in the mid to higher price range, since these will typically afford you all the durability, strength, comfort, and performance you are in need of.

Final Thoughts

If you love kayaking, you love adventure, you love the still of the waters or the challenging rough waters, or you simply love the peace and serenity that kayaking offers you with the beauty of nature all around you, then surely you want your kayaking experience to be an enjoyable and comfortable one. If you are a beginner, waste not a moment longer, get out there and purchase a reasonably priced paddle of proper length to alleviate any unnecessary challenges or discomforts from your kayaking adventure.

For the expert kayaker, be sure that the durability and strength of your paddle matches not only your body type, but indeed your arms reach to allow for a proper distribution of balance and stability. Certainly, you wouldn’t go kayaking without a perfect kayak boat, one capable of accommodating your size, then indeed you should not expect to paddle the waters without a kayak paddle that is perfectly fitted to your size and is both durable and reliable.

Let’s face it – you can’t fully embrace the experience if you are not properly equipped to do so. Make certain your kayak paddle serves you well, and get out on those waters and row, row, row.





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